Thursday, December 25, 2008

Thank you to everyone who made a donation to the Maitreya School - Your gift is appreciated. We hope you all had a great Christmas and have a happy New Year! We are off to the Buddhism course so will be out of touch for the next week.

Love you all, K and C

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas!

We love you and miss you all....xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxo

video

Monday, December 22, 2008

New photos

Our home away from home - Bodhgaya. We are sitting here tunned into Christmas music with the Christmas lights going missing you all!!! Merry Christmas and enjoy!!!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Take out the Paper and the Trash.....

I was teaching grade 8s the other day, and during the lesson, while students were working on something a girl walked up to me and asked me if she could throw out a bunch of paper and crap she had in her hand; very polite. I said sure and went on helping the kids I was working with. Out of the corner of my eye, as I was helping these kids, I noticed the girl walking towards the side of the room. Then in one, normal, motion, she opened the window and threw her garbage out the second story!!! Closed it and sat back down. I burst out laughing!!! Just a typical day in an Indian school!!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

New Photos!!

Here they are from South India!! Enjoy!!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Holiday Gift Ideas:-)

As you all know (or at least we hope you do from reading our blog:-) Cory and I have been volunteering at the Maitreya School in Bodgaya, India. From volunteering there and visiting the villages where the children live we have seen the small miracles that the school is able to do for the kids. It gives them uniforms, which in some cases is the only outfit that they own, it provides them breakfast and lunch, pens, notebooks, paper, an education and most of all gives these children and the people around them hope. Hope that one day things will change; that one day they will be able to live in a house made out of bricks; hope that they will be able to defy the caste system and change their lives for the better. That one day things will be easier.

So if any of you have someone that you would like to get a gift for this holiday season and not quite sure what to get them, please consider sponsoring a child at the Maitreya School for only $20/month or $240/year, BUT any amount will be used for a worthy cause. If you are interested in making a donation or getting more information the website is : http://www.maitreyaproject.org/en/education/index.html

Thank you for your consideration,
Kristin and Cory

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

New Photos!!!

Sorry they took so long but here are the rest of the Turkey photos (and check out the new Books for the Traveller's Soul section on the right:-)

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Hot Lunch!! Pick up your Hot Lunch here!!

Dhaba - Wallas

Mumbai has over 5,000 dhaba wallas - who are workers that deliver hot lunches to hungry office workers all over the city. They pick up lunch boxes from restaurants, and homes (where the wives have made lunch for their husbands) and carry them in hundreds on heads, bicycles and trains to a centralized sorting spot in the city. They are then sorted using a sophisticated system of numbers and colours (as many of the dhaba wallas are illiterate) which is used to determine where the lunches will end up.


More then 200,000 meals are delivered each day - always on time, rain, monsoon, or shine. It is said that there is only one mistake for every 6 million lunches delivered!!! and this is a country that is famous (to travellers anyway) for things being late, disorganized and chaotic! Who would have thought!



Friday, December 5, 2008

If I were Prime Minister of India, the first thing I would do would be....

  • Build a road to my village
  • Let everyone go to school
  • Give everyone a bicycle
  • Help the poor
  • Give clothes to everyone
  • Provide medicine and health care to more people
  • Build a school for kids
  • Give electricity to the villages in the north
  • Get rid of bad policemen
  • Provide food for the poor
  • Let everyone play cricket
  • Not allow fighting

Answers given by grade sixes and sevens at our school. We would love it if any of you teachers in Canada would ask your kids the same questions to see what kind of answers they came up with? It would be quite different I would think.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Cows, Goats and different types of Lama!


Namaste from Bodhgaya!

What's that you say... what is this Namaste nonsense??? Aren't you guys supposed to be in India? Well, yes, we are in India, only a chicken-chirping, roof-riding, horn-honking (excuse me, "blaring"), butt-busting, nausea-negotiating 5 hour bus ride south of Patna, in the beautiful little Buddhist oasis of Bodhgaya!

This small town (29,000 - ok, small for India) is quite a site. It's the holiest of the holiest for anyone from the Buddhist religion, and yet a town in the poorest state in the country. December and January it is full of Tibetan monks and nuns who make the annual pilgrimage here to visit the very temple where Lord Buddha himself became enlightened, and thus Buddhism was born. They setup shop (and restaurant), rent or purchase bicycles for milling around (which is quite fun to watch as many have never ridden one), visit temple daily for chanting and meditation, and fire up the stoves for the best apple pie, cinnamon roles and chocolate cheesecake to be found in the subcontinent!

Being in the poorest of the poor regions and being a manageable location (that's white for 'small') many foreigners (mostly westerners) have come and established schools, projects, organizations, foundations and even institutes all within a 20km radius, which service the surrounding communities' needy. And to complement the influx of both the westerners and the Tibetans, there have been numerous decent accommodation options built in recent years, which brings in even more visitors in these months. To top it all off, each government with a Buddhist following in their country has decided that they must invest copious amounts of money to provide monestaries and temples for their pilgrims while one-upping the temple next door (Thai wins, by the way). So, in a nutshell, you can take a horse-rickshaw into town to get a glass of Chai, while passing Indian kids with no pants outside mudhuts yelling "Hello!", stop at a roadside cafe for some carrot-cake, after which you meet up with some whities for a brewski, then go and buy peanut butter from Mohammud's general store, while listening to the sound of munks chanting, and staring at butter lamps around the Stuppa. WOW!

The Maitreya Education Project is our current home. We are staying at their "compound", which although is fenced off and a very serene, is not located in any sort of unsafe area. Basically the bottom line is that if vacant facilities exist in India, they will quite efficiently become occupied if made available. Our accommodations and meals have been graciously looked after for our efforts, and with a Nepali chef, you can just imagine the variety! Actually all kidding aside, the food is fantastic (and there is tons of it!), and our room is very comfortable. Doug, our trusty Edmontonian principal currently running the show lives with us, as does Kabir-sir, the Indian born monk with a degree from Oxford (yes, the Oxford), and Sandhya-madam, one of the nicer and more educated teachers at the school (my girlfriend, as Kristin likes to put it). On a side note, our room happens to be one down from where His Holiness the Dalai Lama stayed in 1999 when he last visited Bodhgaya - pretty fuckin' cool if I do say so myeslf!

The story on Doug is he came to visit the Maitreya school (a component of the project - more on that in a minute) one summer they happened to be looking for a new principal (aka every summer), and he liked it so much he decided to return ... for 2 years! Well looked after and with free-reign to do as he pleased (being a private organization) he was ready to do his part and make an extraordinary difference in the lives of the 400+ lucky students that attend for free (with food, books, and uniforms included). And then, he realized something that he had overlooked in his utopian vision... he was in India! And India, does not work like Edmonton! Paper, was not only not available at the school, you couldn't even find it in the town! Resources did not exist, fax and email were not available, teachers bought their degrees (kind of like a fake id ;-) ... seriously! All in all, he succumbed to the way of life here (and the 45 degree heat in the summer) and has made a pretty darn good go of it in his first 6 months!

And now for the students! Let me just say that if there was a way to bring back 25 Indian kindergartners to Canada (legal issues aside), Kristin would do it in a heart beat! They are the littlest and cutest weiners around, and Kristin absolutely adores them! (She gets to teach them music class too!) It is amazing, and all of you who have ever worked with children that really have nothing will agree, to see how happy kids can be. If not for the school, the kids would be hanging out all day working in the fields rolling hay like their friends. But for some reason or another, these kids' applications stood out over the other 9000 received annually by the school (25 of which are accepted) and so starts a wonderful and hopeful educational journey for each of them. With Buddhist founders, a holistic 30 minute assembly begins each morning that focuses on meditation and one of the 16 humanistic qualities that make a good person. Then a day filled with English and Hindi lessons, tea and snack time, yoga classes for phys. ed., and Karma Yoga at the end of the day where students clean up (sweeping included) their respective classes unfolds. It is not all as beautiful and perfect as it sounds, but for a school that really has almost nothing (tables, benches, notebooks, semi-qualified teachers, it's doing pretty freakin' well.

Kristin and I are into our 4th day tomorrow and now have our schedules for the next six weeks. English, music and yoga are our areas of expertise (are they?), and with little to no curriculum, and one exam at the end of the year as our source of evaluation (yes, something else Doug can quite get teachers to understand the flaws of) we can pretty much go to town! Kristin tried her first lessons this afternoon (grade 8 and 9 English - we're teaching together for this first week), and not only was she flawless, she actually liked it?! What the hell???! Kristin likes volunteering in a foreign country (my god India of ALL places?!)?? I guess the apple pie really did do her in!

Namaste friends!
We miss and love you all!

Love Kristin-Madam and Cory-Sir

For those of you following at home: Goa --> Delhi --> Patna (eeee...) --> Gaya --> Bodhgaya

Monday, December 1, 2008

A blast from the past - courtesy of Russ and Vera

To conclude our perfect Turkey trip we decided to join C&K in a must-do Turkish experience…the Hammam. So the girls and guys split up to compare our treatment at a very local Turkish bath.

Hammam for Her

K and I were a little unsure of Hammam etiquette, specifically, what, if any, piece of clothing does one get to keep on, and who is doing the scrubbing and massaging.

Pretending it was no biggy, we walked past scantily-clad men in order to get to the women’s section, I guess that’s better than the other way around.

The cashier with the constant cigarette hanging from her lips pointed us to our change room.

The hand signals from our 30-something, very-buxom attendant, could only have meant “take it all off and use the towel”, so we reluctantly bared all. When our pleasantly smiling masseuse escorted us into the hot, marble bath area and and tore off our towels we found out that towels are just for drying, not for hiding. She pointed to the marble slabs where we were to sit and wait for our next round of charades.

Once we got over our North American female angst and allowed ourselves to relax, we really enjoyed the wonderfully luxurious Hammam experience. Very warm room, just enough moisture, a mix of clear running warm and cool water to pour over ourselves, a good scrubbing from head to toe, massage and thorough and gentle hair wash by a capable and caring woman.

Oh ya, did I mention she doesn’t wear much?

Hammam for Him

When Cory and I returned we were given towels, told to strip down, were directed to a steam room and were told to sit there – all of this in broken English and me with zero comprehension of Turkish. This steam room may have been the hottest place I’ve ever been in my life!! Within two minutes sweat was streaming from pores I never knew I even had. It took mean, lean Cory about five minutes to be pouring sweat so I didn’t feel so bad. Still not sure where all of this was going but unable to stand the intense heat of the steam room and thinking I was going to pass out I left for the room adjacent to the sweat box to cool down. Here you lay, yah right, on heated marble slabs before your treatment begins. Best I could do was sit on them. Was actually feeling somewhat cooler. Saw a thermometer on the wall and asked Cory to check the temperature – 104 degrees!! Thought I was going to die. All of a sudden, a huge and I mean 300 plus pounds huge, hairy, sweating Turk with a towel loosely wrapped around his enormous waist walks in, points to Cory and gruffly says “Come”. About three minutes later I hear Cory scream from another room. Now I know I’m going to die!!

Next he returns for me. Takes me to a marble shower stall, motions for me to sit on the floor, proceeds to remove my towel and starts dumping tubs and tubs of cold water on me…now I know why Cory was screaming. Starts soaping me down, not too gently either, then pulls out his secret weapon…his scrub pad. Proceeds to rake this thing over every part of my body and I’m thinking I must be in a Turkish torture chamber, not a Turkish bath. Now for the massage. He hands me over to his counterpart, a 275 pound hairy lightweight who introduces himself as Mamed. Asks for my name, Ros is as close as he gets. Tells me to lay on the marble slab face up, crosses my arms, pushes down on my chest with all his weight and breaks my back. At least it feels broken. After working me over, none too gently, for 20 minutes of so he drags me back to the shower stall where he tells me to sit and proceeds to dump gallons of water over my head.

Tells me to stand up, says “finished” but stands in the doorway of the shower stall not allowing me to leave. Here I am, a broken, drowned rat with my towel hanging somewhere around my thighs and Mamed looking at me, almost affectionately, smiling and repeating, ”Ros… Mamed”, “Ros… Mamed”. “What the hell is he looking for?” I wonder somewhat uncomfortably. Finally one more “Ros… Mamed” as he rubs together his thumb and forefinger and it hits me…he’s looking for a tip which I’m relieved to provide. After cooling down and changing, Cory and I locate Mamed and his sidekick sitting in their towels, still sweating, chain smoking and drinking apple tea. We thank them, offer some Lira and leave them to treat their next victims. As we meet Vera and Kristin and wander into the night looking for a restaurant to celebrate our last dinner together I can’t believe how refreshed I feel. I think of the experience and think of Mamed, almost affectionately, and smile.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Not in Mumbai

Just a quick note to let you all know we are not in Mumbai - thank God. We are currently in Delhi flying to Patna today and then heading to the school in Bodgaya to teach.

Thanks for all the notes of concern. Hopfeully the attacks end ASAP!!!

love k and c

Friday, November 21, 2008

Got It India

Well we said good bye to Russ and Vera after an amazing trip (more detials on that to follow:-)and flew at 4:30 am after a fun night of sleeping at the airport to Crazy Mumbai (formerly Bombay). We landed in Mumbai not knowing what to expect - hopped in a cab and held on for dear life - there are no road rules and it is okay to scrape the car beside you!

On the ride to the hotel got a look at the city - there is 15 million people living there half of which live in slums or are homeless. It was a pretty sad drive - people are living everywhere, on the shoulder of the highways tarps (homes) are set up, every piece of land has someone living in it - people were sleeping on the islands of the highway, there is no sidewalks because people are sleeping and living on them - it was huge change from turkey and sad adn unbelieveable to not only the poverty but the amount of people living with no homes or water.

We managed to find a place to stay and then tried out luck at eating out and it was amazing!!!!!! The best indian food we have ever had and since then we cannot stop eating everything we see - the food is so full of flavour and taste!! and you can get a gourment meal for two for $7.00! I reccomend coming to India just for the food!

From Mumbia we headed to Mahabaleshwar south and east 8 hours a nice town in the hills and the strawberry capital of the country so we of course had our fill!!

From there we took an interesting ride to Goa, which started by hoping into a cab in Mahabalshwar which drove at least 80 km/hour on a mountain ridge and a one lane road with cars, buses and trucks coming head on and no one pulling over just both drivers hoking at eachother. I had the luck of sitting in the front seat which i don't know if i hated it more or the driver because of my constant scared cries for him to slow the hell down!!!

The cabbie dropped us off at the bus where we got on a sleeper bus to Goa, which is a normal bus made into beds only and no chairs. I use the term sleeper loosely as although we did sleep (a little), I question whether they might change the name to bouncer bus or are you driving on a fuckin' road, or straight down a rocky cliff bus or is there a kid driving the bus, or is the man driver just blind bus or the bounce so high in your sleep you hit your stomach on the ceiling bus or just discount tours, as in discount being alive when you get there!!! Yup' those would be better names for the company.

We are now in GOA where it is hot!!! and beautiful, its right on the coast, so we are chilling out, tanning and hopefully drinking a few beers for a week and then we fly to the school that we are working at.

India has been a great surprise so far - we are both loving it and the food!!! Speaking of which there's a bakery we have to go hit up!!!

Love K and C

For those of you following at home: Mumbai --> Mahabaleshwar --> Goa (Panaji first, then Anjuna Beach)

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Ok, so, what exactly are you saying?

Russ and Vera have arrived and seem to be loving Turkey! The only problem seems to be that they don't speak Turkish, and most Turks they don't speak English! Other than that, travelling in Turkey is a piece of cake (isn't it always?)!

After a long awaited arrival and an even longer flight, mom and dad arrived in Istanbul a week ago rearing to go! Dad was on his new Blackberry upon arrival (which we didn't even know he had, let alone knew how to use) sending emails and texts to Jamie, Judy and whoever else, from Istanbul!! Who is this new man! We explored Istanbul for a few days, dodging carpet salesman after carpet salesman, bargaining at the Grand Bazaar (at which mom became a whole different, half Turkish, half French, half Spanish-speaking, negotiating fiend) and sampled Baklava, Turkish Delight, and every Turkish appetizer known to Istanbul! After many enlightening and hilarious conversations with our hostel owners Emrah, Metin and Ali, as well as a night of free entertainment from our restaurant host trying agressively to get any and all tourists to eat in his restaurant (he knew about 6 words in 14 different languages and felt that Macaroni and Fish were his best sellers) it was time to leave for the Cappadocia region... via overnight train!

Mom had graciously booked us private sleeper cars for our 17 hour journey, and dad humbly picked up endless amounts of snacks (including 2 bags of chips, 2 packs of cookies, 2 cans of beans, 12 assorted peices of fruit, 4 chocolate bars, 10 500ml beers, 5 different packs of nuts and a few other "secret" emergency rations) we were set... or were we? As soon as a few fellow passengers started to board the sleeper car with not one, but multiple FULL loaves of bread, and numerous 2L bottles of pop, dad started to sweat. After asking at least 7 times if we thought we needed more food, a panick-stricken dad lept from the train and darted (I haven't seen him run this fast since his last marathon) for the snack stands in search of more chips, beer and provisions. This absolutely hilarious ritual happened 2 more times before the whistle blew and dad collapsed on the his seat, exhausted! The rest of us were in tears! All this and we still had a meal to eat in the dining car; Kristin's first meal on a train and she was very excited. Our gracious host (his name escapes me as I didn't understand him the first time) came around with blankets, pillows and a wonderful smile, and told us in pretty good English "I will be of service to you on the trip and just tell me anything you need". So, accordingly, dad responded excitedly with "what time does the restaurant open?", to which he replied simply "no". "Sorry, dad said, "no"? "No" the man replied again. Although I don't think he really was, dad wanted to be confused, as "no" there is no restaurant meant "no" we don't eat dinner. "No restaurant"?, dad pleaded, "no" the man replied again. And after we all looked at each other thinking the same thing, dad shrugged his shoulders and did what any great dad would do when the restaurant was closed and his family hadn't eaten; cracked a brewski, ripped open the chips and said "bonne appetite"! And the laughter and pigout continued late into the night. (A quick note here to say that he also jumped off the train at 6:00am the following morning to grab breakfast at our only "long" stop on the 17 hour journey).

Cappadocia (the town of Goreme specifically), is like walking into "fairyland" at Disneyworld. It has rock formations like no other place in the world (that we've been to anyway) that look to some like giant mushrooms, others like giant rocky-icebergs, and others still like huge penises. No matter what your perspective, they are quite bizarre and quite large; and they're everywhere. Stranger still are the insane number of caves that have been chiseled out of the rock and at one point around the 3rd century, either lived in or used for Christian chapels or barriel grounds. In fact, we visited a whole underground city, that from ground-level is invisble, but underneath is 8 levels or floors (so far) of rock rooms and full and beautiful chapels. It was constructed and used by Chrisitans as a place to pray and live when the Romans ruled the area. Christianity wasn't official at the time and thus illegal to practice. Quite an astoudning work of architecture! Entire villages could live down there for months at a time undectected by their enemies, and had underground passegeways that connected right to the floors of their homes. They even had a full ventilation system that was an 8 storey tunnel connecting all floors with the outside above and the watertable below!

In the spirit of caves and weirdness, we all stayed in a Cave hotel, which Kristin has decided she can live in permanently. Quite a cool experience that left us humming the Flinstone tune more often than not! Tonight we are off to see the famous Whirling Dervishes for the first time, and tomorrow onto another UNESCO world heritage sight at Pummukale (googlt that! ;-)

Miss you all and will write again soon!

Love K and C, and Vera and Russ

For those of you following at home, Istanbul --> Cappadocia --> Konya --> Pummukale

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Slideshow Added!

Hey all!

Most of you have checked out these pics at shutterfly already, we just wanted to play wıth the slideshow tool in blogger! (Plus, we were getting some complaints about speed, so hopefully this will help ın the future!)

If you start it backwards, there may be some new ones you haven't seen yet, otherwise, there all the same!

Stay tuned for more!

K and C

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Hobbıt Town

Well after all these years İ have finally fıgured out where Cory came come - Safronbolu - a town buılt for hobbıts!!!! Well actually a town buılt by the Ottomans ın sometıme ın turkısh hıstory:-) Every door, room, entrance way ıs extremely small, made of wood and as hobbıtesk as you could ımagıne - pıcture Lord of the Rıngs ın real lıfe. It ıs a pretty neat town and has been declared a UNESCO sıght so hopefully ıt wıll keep ıts fhobbıt atmosphere!!

We had a great tıme ın Safronbalu and ı thınk have managed to try every turkısh treat so far ıncludıng tons (ıf not to much) of turkısh delıght whıch ı thınk we may both be sıck of but ıt was amazıng nonetheless and so much Baklava whıch ıs way better ın Turkey than ın Greece - just melts ın your mouth amazıng!!! We had a good nıght hangıng out wıth some turkısh locals ın Safronbolu one nıght - the conversatıons were quıte comıncal consıderıng we only each knew about ten words ın eachothers languages - but fun nonethe less!!

We are now ın Istanbul eagerly awaıtıng Russ and Veras arrıval on Frıday!!

Happy early Halloween!!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Roosters explanatıon!!

Just realızed İ forgot to explaın the roosters!! We ended up campıng ın cırallı right beside the beach - ıt was beautiful and quıet in the day but we woke up the first night to i swear to god about a thousands roosters havıng a party!!! vıdeo to be attached later - for those of you who have travelled you know the curse of the rooster!!!

Sun, Sand and Roosters!!!

Hey everyone,

Hope you all had a great thanksgıvıng!! We mıssed the stuffıng here, but not the turkey(-:

thıngs here are goıng great - we have recently been ın Olympus a beautıful coast town wıth towns of camp lıke hostels where you stay ın treehouse - very cool and relaxıng!!! They also have really comfy platforms wıth rugs, and pıllows makıng ıt perfect for chıllıng out and that ıs exactly what we dıd!! We learned backgammon - the natıonal game of turkey, whıch ıs actually quıte fun!! Ate untıl we were goıng to burst, tanned on the beach and chılled wıth other canadıans we had met along the way - we even got the electıon results as ıt was happenıng - damn conservatıves!! we were all keen to try another trekkıng adventure but once we got there ıt was just to chıll to leave so we settled for a few days hıkes and some serıous tannıng, chıllıng wıth other canadıans and drınkıng the famous and only beer here efe!

after fıve days we have left and are now ın egırdır - a cute lıttle town around the thırd largest lake ın turkey - we are thınkıng of tryıng a hıke agaın but shall see how motıvated we really are!!

mıss you all lots and hope your doıng well!!

Hapy late bday baıner!!!

K and C

Kas - Olympus - Cırallı - Egırdır

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Pıctures!

Here's the fırst batch!

Clıck on the lınk below or copy and paste ıt to see what the trouble we've been gettıng into!

K & C

http://share.shutterfly.com/action/welcome?sid=8Act3DRozYt2HV

Monday, October 13, 2008

Turkey for you, and Turkey for me...



We fıgure ıt's only fıttıng that we type thıs today, beıng what we assume ıs Thanksgıvıng! So a HAPPY one to everyone and we mıss you all TONS!! (Actually sıncerely wonderıng ıf we're goıng to be able to make ıt to June!)

Turkey has been wonderful!!! The town of Fethıye, where we last left you ıs out favourıte thus far (out of 3 ;-) - I know, tough decısıon! It's a beautıful lıttle port town that ıs just so charmıng and quaınt (lısten to me I sound lıke the Travel Network). But ıt was, and a nıce break from the crazıness that was Greece.

It only took 2 days before we decıded to set off for our fırst hıke. A 2-dayer, apparently ın a few sources ranked as one of the top ten "walks" ın the world. Ok, so we lıked to thınk of ıt as more than a walk, but ıt was possıble the most stunnıng hıke we've ever done (and any South Amerıca followers know we've done a few)! Unbelıevable ocean vıews the entıre tıme, not too much up and down and we dıdn't have to carry our tent, etc as we could stay at a Pensıon (essentıally hostels here) on the way. He was actually full when we got there, so he saıd we could stay for free ın a Tree House (whıch are bıg ın Southern Turkey - kınd of lıke an open raısed bungalow but wıth vınes for a roof) as ıt was pretty cold at nıght. We had our sleepıng bags so the 15 degrees at nıght wasn't too frıgıd. And asıde from payıng a lıttle too much for a cab on the way up to our departıng poınt, we were happy as could be!


we ended the hıke ın a town called Olüdenız, whıch ıs supposed to be the paraglıdıng capıtal of the world (ıt also happens to have an unbelıevable beach). Almost the entıre second day we could see paraglıders calmly passıng over us, and trust me, ıt was pretty clever advertısıng. We got back and promısed that ıt would be our only tourısty thıng we dıd untıl our parents joın us at the begınnıng of November (thanks ın advance guys ;-), and so we dıd ıt, and how crazy ıt was! we both agreed that ıt was up there ın the top 5 thıngs we've ever done!

And then we decıded to do our second hıke, and that's when thıngs got ugly. A 3-day jaunt on a dıfferent sectıon of the same traıl we hıked on earlıer, our hopes were hıgh... but so I don't go on forever, I'll gıve you a brıef summary whılst beıng techncally saavy and creatıng my fırst blog lıst:


  • ıt took us 1 hour to fınd the begınnıng of the traıl whıch happened to be 5 kılometers from where we thought

  • we walked uphıll the entıre fırst day (6 hours)

  • we met some Amerıcans half-way up the 1st day who told us all the wells beyond were empty (there were no rıvers eıther) - of course, beıng the tough Canadıans that we are we could handle not drınkıng

  • at one poınt the traıl markıngs were mysterıously were covered over wıth whıte paınt and at that exact moment (not even kıddıng) a gırl from a nearby vıllage appeared and would "show us the way", for a small fee of course

  • Krıstın woke up the 2nd day wıth about 26 (yes, she counted) bıg bıtes of some sort

  • goıng up agaın all of day 2, we ate lunch at a well that was almost dry and had tons of snaıls ın ıt... (of course we drank from ıt ;-)

  • the major downfall to the entıre operatıon came at thıs poınt when the clouds opened up and gumball-sızed haıl basıcally beat the shıt out of us for one hour and 20 mınutes non-stop - we were freezıng, had completely lost the traıl markers (whıch us what kept us occupıed for the hour and 20 mınutes) and were posıtıve we were goıng to get hıt by lıghtnıng - after the storm subsıded (beıng the keyword here), we walked sheepıshly along what we thought was the traıl but decıded ıt was probably a dumb ıdea (consıderıng we were walkıng back ınto the storm) and turned around to head back to our lunch spot to camp, ın darkness and soaked

  • Krıstın woke up the 3rd day (yes, she got the worst of the experıence) wıth a lıttle unexpected vısıt from you know who (especıally ıf you're female), durıng the month at you know when, and she hadn't brought any you know what... (I MUST POINT OUT HERE THAT SHE WAS STILL SMILING! - although less so at thıs partıcular poınt)

  • We decıded that was fun enough and hıked from 8:30 'tıll 5:00, 22km, downhıll (thank god!...sort of)

And today ladıes and gentlemen, we are chıllıng at a campground, lıke nothıng ever happened! For those of you followıng at home, we are ın the Turkısh Southern-coastal town of Kas, and plannıng to move onto Olympos shortly! Happy thanksgıvıng agaın... we know what we're gıvıng thanks for!!! ;-)


Love K and C

Greece Lıghtnıng!





So Greece came and went wıth a flash (no pun ıntended :-). You'll have to excuse the mınor grammatıcal errors throughout our adventurous posts as the real "i's" are way too far over on the rıght of the keyboard to make any effort to get to and other grammatıcal commanılıtıes are just as annotıng ın some cases. Rıght, so Athens was HOT, stıcky, amazıng to see, crazy wıth cars and traffıc, and truly not a green space ın sıght! We dıd get up to see the Acropolıs though, whıch gıves you a faırly all encompassıng and stunnıng vıew of the massıve cıty beyond. But 2 days and 1 faırly "rough" (but cheap) hostel later, we were out of there and headed for one of the Greek Islands called Rhodes.

It was a smooth overnıght ferry over to the ısland, we headed for the top deck and layed out our sleepıng bags and pads for a very comfortable 14 hour rıde. We thought we were a lıttle "loser-ısh" wıth our compfortable setup, untıl a greek couple one-upped us by settıng up theır tent... ınsıde! Needless to say, we were rıght where we belonged.

Upon our arrıval ın Rhodes, ıt dıdn't take us long to fıgure out that were way to cheap to pay to camp at those beaches when we could take a boat ımmedıately (only an hour and a half) to the Turkısh port of Fethıye, and stay at beaches just the same. And so we were off! And so, the offıcıal tally was 3 days ın Greece, and not a regret about ıt!

Friday, October 3, 2008

Happy Birthday Boy and Uncle Bill!!
Happy early anniversary Adam and Jylian!!!

Miss you all lots.....and are sweating tons...its about 35 degrees here:-)

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Arrival


Hey Everyone, We just wanted to let you all know that we have arrived in Athens!! We had a pretty good flight minus the three hour delay in Montreal, but we were able to each have three seats the whole way so could stretch out and sleep!! We are now on our way to see the Acropolis!! Miss you all lots and will write more later!! Love K and C