Sunday, June 04, 2006

Police Escort

Our destination today: the ferry last stop, called "Great Island": Buyukada, and its Greek monastary and little church of St. George, who does appear in a number of icons with his sword and writhing dragon. At the mountain top along with the church is a restaurant with delicious salads and grilled meats. The problem: at the end of a slow horse carriage ride in this car-free island, it's a long hot walk up a cobblestone road.

Though it winds through glorious pine woods with frequent framed vistas of nearby islands in the mist, it's a very hard walk. Our host's solution -- he had called the local police chief and requested for his important American visitor a ride in the police van! We much enjoyed the walk back down, and the slow carriage ride into the village, where horse carts carry people, groceries, construction equipment, and everything else.

To start the day, accompanied by our host and his family, we had walked around our host's childhood neighborhood on the Asian side, called Kadikoy. From the boat stop (Iskele) our ferryboat went in the opposite direction from that of the previous day, this time toward the islands in the Sea of Marmara.

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