Day 34, Aug 15 - At Journey's End
Trip Start Jul 13, 2012
35Trip End Aug 16, 2012
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As I am carrying my bike out into the streets I spy two men taking apart their bikes. I approach them and they are two German brothers who have just finished their trek from Munich to Istanbul and were heading back later that day. Almost same trip as me. Best of all they have brought with them a pedal wrench. Awesome. I actually did not get their names so I will call them Hans and Franz. They are heroes number 4 and 5. They are not just heroes because they had a wrench and were happy to help but because they just finished up a similar journey. We chatted for a while. Agreed that Serbia was not a good place to bike and they had mountain bikes. Also that the final stretch into Istanbul was crazy
The rest of the day was touristy. Started off touring the Basilica Cistern which was fantastic and not just because the temperature was 17 degrees inside. My favourite spot in the city. After that I walked over to Galata Tower and around the narrow city streets on the other side of the bridge. On the way I noticed a shoe cleaner lost his scrubbing brush while walking. He was grateful and offered to clean my sneakers (which is weird to me) for helping him. But of course this was not genuine and he started immediately with sad story looking for money. I gladly paid him because I thought he was funny.
I took a boat cruise on the Bosporus Strait dividing Europe and Asia. Walked through the Grand Bazaar, which was too insane for me. Just shop after shop in a confusing massive structure and everything looked the same. I sat at a terrace of a local burger place at the harbour. While there some poor bastard's car broke down and he was trying to push it across the massive and very busy intersection. The drivers of Istanbul are not courteous in the least and I am amazed how closed the vehicles came to hitting him as he stood outside his car trying to push.
I walked around a lot of places and finally ended up in the Blue Mosque as my final stop on the night before the hostel.
At the hostel I updated the blog and had a large Efes beer and chatted with Isham the guy who was working there.
A very good end to a fantastical and crazy journey.