In the space of 4 months, having been hosted so many times along the way by different people, I have eaten with a myriad of spoons, knives and forks, slept on multiple pillows, and stood underneath so many different showerhead.
This is probably the equivalent to what your average human would use in an entire lifetime. So essentially, although they are futile things to experience- I have still had a lifetime's worth of those experiences in the space of a few months. And this is exactly why I'm so in love with this trip and the very concept of it. I am experiencing the full spectrum of human experience without even trying! I am grateful to be eating from a myriad of spoons, for each one is ultimately unique.
Waves gently slapping the rocks below, sun having already gone down, with the distant murmur of a brass band playing. Istanbul. The meeting point of both Europe and Asia- the only city that literally crosses two continents. And the mix is clear, with the two rubbing shoulders. So, It has taken me 3 months and 3 weeks to cycle the entirety of the European continent and to arrive here in Asia. I spent a day yesterday having a proper look around, and then in the evening I took the ferry boat over to the Asian side of Istanbul. It was a precious moment for me, with live traditional music playing on the boat. I wanted cycle over the bridge, despite knowing that it was forbidden. But, luckily before doing so, I decided to ask a local traffic policeman to see if it was possible, and he said that if I attempted it, he would cut off my willy. It was a joke...I think. So, I decided to get the ferry boat, as any sane man would (just in case this is the formal penalty of cycling across the main bridge lol).
Oh Asia, oh Oriental culture - there is this deep and loud longing for these far away, exotic countries that will bring the unknown and the novel in so many ways. A strong orientalism, a fascination with some of the cultures that await me in this new landmass - Japan, Taiwan, Indonesia - wow, the very idea of visiting these places has excited me from a very young age, and soon (sort of) I will be traversing them by bicycle. And it's these nations and peoples that were a big catalyst for me to actually begin this crazy voyage in the first place, to fully allow the caterpillar of my idea to transform into the butterfly of this reality.
And for me (I can't say the same for you) these potentialities of oriental wonder and beauty, by far outweigh the dangers that they stand side-by-side with, on these beautiful lands. And if anything, the hurdles and challenges that I will come across on route, really shall make the beautiful moments all the more earned and nourishing, for I would have worked my socks off for the blissful times, and undergone suffering, of some kind for sure, to experience the heightened high times.
But for now I am being eased into this continent, with the helping hand of Istanbul, a cultural hub where both contents rub shoulders.
FULL POWER PEACE AND DOVES!