In northeastern Turkey we reach Kars. The Pronvin town with its intricate history lies silted in a wintry melancholy. From here we explore the former metropolis Ani on the Armenian border. In the past, however, as important as Constantinople, she was not granted a century-long success story. Ani lies today in the rubble of herself.
But then our host shows us a suggestive translation suggestion on his cell phone, which lets us shoot the blush in the face. Do we really want to stay here?
Recognition number 57: If the drinking water bottle is frozen next to the bed, it was cold at night.
If I had to describe Şanlıurfa with a color, that would be purple. In the provincial town in the deep southeast of Turkey, briefly called by all Urfa, women and men wear mainly purple headscarves in all shades - lavender, lilac, purple. Emina also wears such a headscarf, as well as a glittering and sequin-embroidered red velvet coat, as is customary among the rural women here. She came to meet me on the main road from Urfa, as I was doing my last errands before I drove on to Iran.
A city by the sea is blessed. Istanbul is located on two seas and unites two different worlds that coexist here.
Nostalgia is the suffering of an unfulfilled longing. The desire to return. That's how I felt when finally the trembling lights of Istanbul stirred under me and I realized what I had. We parted in gray-colored November. I went to marvel at Africa. I left and she stayed.
Now I returned to the shores of the Bosporus.
A bar with no name, a nondescript black door, an entrance hall that looks like she's in an employment office - and a quarter ...
The sun rises over Cappadocia. No cloud can be seen in the still dark blue sky. The air is clear and cold, almost windless. I wear my clothes in the onion system and yet I shiver, pull my woolen cap deeper in the face. Still the frosty night does not give up without a fight.
I'm a bit queasy when we climb into the braided basket of the hot air balloon. Then we take off and float over one of the most impressive landscapes of Turkey.
Istanbul. Between tradition and modernity, the city is above all the link between Europe and Asia. Nowhere is it easier to switch from one continent to the other. Nevertheless, the Anatolian Istanbul fades a shadowy existence - far away from the Blue Mosque and Hagia Sofia. But anyone venturing across the Bosphorus will experience the city completely new, discover overflowing markets and perhaps enjoy the Turkish lifestyle - somewhere between Çay, Muezzin and rugged guitar riffs.
On September 14, 2001, I started my first big trip. Three days before the World Trade Center had fallen, but Felix and I could not stop that. Our community service was over, money in the account. But where should it go?