PERGAMON – TEETERING TEMPLES AND PHANTOM SNAIL PINCHERS, TURKEY 1976

THURSDAY 21ST OCTOBER, 1976 – PART ONE

‘Went back in to Bergama and up hillside to old citadel of Pergamon.  Fantastic views of surrounding hills and plains and bird’s eye view of Bergama.  Hills very rugged and unfertile; lots of olive trees and sheep wandering around with bells around necks.

Ponies grazing among ruins.  Ruins quite extensive (Greek ones – Roman further down towards the town).  Remains of aquaduct, old city walls, library (200,000 parchments originally before taken to Alexandra and lost in a fire).

Temple of Athena and very steep theatre dropping down hill – steepest in Turkey because of gradient of hill.  Hilarious American Tour – “Gee what a super picture of a fig tree” as they passed the remains of the steepest amphitheatre in Turkey; “does anybody want a bit of marble?” and handed some round.  One woman went into ecstasies over a snail and looked suspiciously at us, saying, “You’re not going to take the snail away are you?”  I didn’t think we looked particularly like phantom snail pinchers.  Perhaps she thought we were combing the old ruins of Turkey for that very reason …’

ACROSS THE DARDANELLES TO TROY – AND MUDDY CAMPING, TURKEY, 1976

WEDNESDAY 20TH OCTOBER, 1976 – PART TWO

 

Paul with flowers in beard

‘Back to Eceabat where we got ferry across Dardanelles to Asia.  Sat in lounge, waiter came round with cay.  Rob trying to write diary again but men pestering him to buy jeans – offered 2000 lire!  Paul tried to sell his for 500L.

Next stop was Troy.  Went round ruins – about 9 different cities.  More impressive than expected – bits of city wall, rampart, theatre, pillars, storage jars etc.  Looked out across plain to Dardanelles and Gallipoli (?) in very far distance.  Looked around museum, various jars and pots and drinking goblets, as well as powder jars etc.  Some still had designs on – owls and little men.  No one quite sure which city was one of Homer – maybe 7th city.  Big wooden horse has been reconstructed by musuem.

 

Girls picking cotton in Western Turkey

Continued along coast and inland a bit.  Rather boring scenery, mostly flat and muddy; more hilly countryside covered in olive trees.  Felt ill.

Stopped at Pergamon – walking across road, Neva was missed by car by about an inch!  Bought nuts and raisins.  Shirley had her shoes polished; little boy in full command, bashing brush on box with great flair when Shirley was to put other foot up.  Nearly missed bus.

Drove few miles out and camped on sandy muddy stretch near water (house was built on previous camping area!) at Plajevleri – bar a few metres away, road on other side of tents.  Dogs barking round all the time and village idiot blowing whistle and snooping round tents.’