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  The Chatter Box : Blathering On
How's this for a tour company? by mrsteabag on 20 July 2010 8:39pm
Politically Incorrect Tours! Places like the houseboat hotel Michael visited in "Himalaya" on the border between Kashmir and India; Iran; Afghanistan; many parts of South America...you get the picture. Maybe I've inhaled too many of the chemicals that the farmer next door has dumped on the field, but it's a thought.
The slogan: "Why let a little upheaval get in the way of your travels?"
Re: How's this for a tour company? by Loretto on 20 July 2010 9:22pm
I was thinking about going to teach for two weeks in India next year, but with the sabotaged trains, I am really wondering if it is safe at all?

Having grown up in Ireland though, I know that there are areas that you just don't go to. Belfast is a lovely city now, but as our tour guide said in August of 2009, "The only tourists we had here in the 70's and 80's were soldiers."

I hope the July 12th unrest is not going to bring things back to the way they were.

I suppose every country in the world has hot spots. Just be aware of where they are and be an educated traveler.
Re: How's this for a tour company? by tucsonmike on 20 July 2010 10:35pm
Look at the other side of that. If I had had my pocket picked, or been mugged in France, has France suddenly become unsafe?
Re: How's this for a tour company? by Spursfan on 21 July 2010 10:17am
We've had several bombs go off in Kusadasi (the place we go to in Turkey) over the years, mainly placed by the PKK (Kurdish terrorists). I can remember one going off outside the main post office while our son was in the town, and a couple of weeks after we had been using them, a bomb was left in a Dolmus (minibus) on the route we use from the apartment into town and back if we haven't got a car, with horrendous results (you probably saw it in the news). That was the one that really made me think 'That could've been me!'. (Frighteningly, we had been on one of the minibuses on that route (and there must only be a couple per route I would guess) just before, and a weird Iraqi man sat next to Zak and was sayng how much he hated the Americans. Poor Zak was trying to ignore him. At the time our friend and I were laughing and saying Zak had pulled - but it wasn't so funny a couple of weeks later - was it him???)

However despite this, we haven't let it stop us enjoying Turkey.

In October 2008, PKK (Kurdistan Workers’ Party) operatives entered SE Turkey from Iraq (I think) and killed 17 soldiers - a day before we were due to visit SE Turkey!!!

Quite a few of our Turkish friends tried to put us off going - but the places we wanted to visit were quite a way from the actual site of the killings so we still went. Obviously if they had been in the same towns....! We did visit places that were PKK strongholds and I did feel a bit nervous I have to say - it seemed that every man I passed looked a bit sus!!

We could quite easily let all this ruin our views of Turkey - but you can't. On the whole Turkey is a peaceful place and the people are welcoming and friendly to the extreme.


Re: How's this for a tour company? by Loretto on 21 July 2010 2:50pm
I would love to visit Turkey one day. I looks beautiful, especially the place with the Fairy chimneys!!! You are right, don't let it ruin your views. I am supposed to be teaching in a rural town in the north east. I'll d my research and find out more information. It won't be until next August anyway.
Re: How's this for a tour company? by Spursfan on 21 July 2010 3:25pm
Cappadocia is magical, Loretto!! We have visited it a couple of times - it is quite a way from our base - and want to go again sometme. We'd like to do a balloon ride (like Michael) but I am not sure whether I would chicken out!

The husband has already done one balloon ride (a present from me for his 50th) but I like to have an engine when I am flying!! I LOVE flying by plane but I am scared of heights.

When we first visited Cappadocia in 1988, we ate in a restaurant inside one of the fairy chimneys!! Not sure if it is still there. But it was lovely.

One of the most embarrassing things in my entre life happened there, too!!

We had just bought our first Turkish/English dictionary, and I looked up the words for 'The' 'bill' 'please'. Unfortunately I forgot the dictionary was aimed at Turks, and I read the phonetics. So at the end of the meal I proudly said to the waiter 'De beel pleeeez' or something similar!! He looked at me as if I was speaking Martian and at that point I was wishing for a hole to open up!! Anyway they were really nice about it and we got the message over.

I still get ribbed about it now, 22 years later!! Luckily, my friend did the exact same thing a couple of years agi when ordsering onions, and asked for 'anyan'!!!


Re: How's this for a tour company? by Loretto on 21 July 2010 11:59pm
Too funny!
Re: How's this for a tour company? by Spursfan on 22 July 2010 5:00pm
Of course, I have long since learned the proper way to say the bill please - "Hesap lutfen" (sorry no accents on Palins??!) or just "Hesap" as it seems other countries don't seem to be as keen on saying 'please' and 'thank you' all the time as we Brits do. In fact one of our particularly close Turlish friends commented on it one year when we were in a restaurant. The waiters would bring something and we'd say 'thank you' then they'd bring another and we'd say 'thank you' and another and we'd say 'thank you' etc etc.

I didn't even notice I was doing it until Osman pointed it out!!



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