Day 52 – Alexandroupoli to Tekirdag

I woke to the sound of a private plane coming into land. I was about thirty miles from the border, the air had a bit of a chill in it, but after the days in the heat, I wasn’t complaining. Just before the border, I stopped in a town to munch on a few things I had bought the evening before and then down the road, over the bridge, and into Turkey. As I crossed the bridge, there were gunshots nearby over in the field, what the hell was going on? I passed with ease although quite a long wait to get through, I was now in Turkey.

I was on the main road which meant it was easy to cover the miles, the landscape was quite boring, and there wasn’t much of interest throughout until I stopped at a petrol station. A man wonders over to ask me if he could ride my bike, of course, the first instinct is to say no but before embracing all things I wanted to see what would happen if he did. Will he run off, unlikely he works here? Will he break it, doubtful? So off I jumped and let him ride it around the station. He then asked if I would like a drink, I accepted and then the next thing you know is you are sitting round a table drinking tea with his family and friends. They didn’t speak much English so once again google translate came to the rescue. Amazing what happens when you randomly put your faith in a stranger!

I left there after a few teas and headed on, as the afternoon came to an end, I kept stopping looking for an ATM for some dinner but no luck, one after the other said I would have to go to Tekirdag. I headed on, the sun went down, and there was just enough light to get to the city for some food. I walked along the pier where it seemed to be the happening place to be. Here is were a cyclist came up to me to chat, I wasn’t sure what he was trying to ask but I asked him about food, and he said he knew a good place. So we cycled together to it, I thought he was going to join me put we cycled up to this empty restaurant, then he said he was not going to stay, I figured it was very kind of him to take me all the way there, but he seemed to know the people. I sat down, and there was only one thing on the menu, lamb sausages. That’s fine, I can cope with that, but it was such a small dish, then I asked for it again maybe with chips and a pita. I wasn’t sure what I said, but then he takes everything off my table and goes to the kitchen, 10 minutes later he comes back with a plastic thing to go and then walks off. The guy who took me there must have been getting paid to bring people as it was probably the worst restaurant so far on the trip.

I decided to cycle on and out of the city, it was the first time on the journey I have needed to use my lights. I cycle out, and when I saw a road down a quiet passage, I moved down there out of sight from the residents and set up for the night. I was just over 100 miles from Istanbul; the plan is to relax and come just short tomorrow and to arrive the day after.