Sunday, May 11, 2008

Turkey Sunday May 11


Well, Google suspects my computer may have been infected by a viros, and it won't let me view my own blogs. It's strange that they'll let me post new information, but not view what I post. Oh well, another new twist to the overseas travel blogging.

Today's adventures were a lot of driving, and some more interesting and distant ruins. We started out with a monastery which was first used in 495AD. It houses 12,000 residents, some buried in the chairs they worked in. It sits atop a hill near caves which were the first ever monasteries, dating back a couple thousand years earlier.

We then drove along the Syrian - Turkey border for hundreds of miles across the land being reclaimed and irrigated by the building of the Ataturk Dam. Drawing water from the Eurphrates River, this huge collection of 22 dams promises to turn dry farmlands into more wheat for Turkey's dinner tables. We can see the results as thousands of green acres stretch to the horizon.

We stop for lunch at a restaurant in Urfa, the home of the birthplace of Abraham, which we see after we eat. In the afternoon, we drive out to Harran, famous for its beehive houses. Nearby is a ruin which began as a temple to moon, was converted to a church, and later became a rest spot for caravans.

On the way back to Urfa, we walk to the site where Rebecca took Jacob to the well in the Old Testament. The well sits just beyond an arched gate, leading to a tall astronomical tower.

Before dinner, we walk through the copper market in Urfa. Pat buys a pepper maker which is usually used to make small cups of fine Turkish coffee. She also convinces me to get a local blue scarf headware we have seen old men wearing in the bazaar.

To view the photographs for the day, click on: Turkey Sunday May 11

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