I won’t pretend the first stage of my odyssey was trouble free.
Getting the bus from the airport into Antalya was easy enough.
But things first got messy when the driver hit something – and I’m still not sure what – and then pulled over to remonstrate with someone – and I’m still not sure who.
He may have hit a wing mirror or another bus or a moped. All I know is there was still a lot of shouting as I hauled my ludicrously heavy backpack off the bus and headed to where the GPS said my hotel should be.
An hour later and with the GPS direction arrow stubbornly refusing to move (bodes well for my 300 mile cross country trek) I button holed a hapless policeman. He hadn’t heard of the hotel. Or the street on which it is located
The taxi driver he summoned for me nodded and beckoned me in. Half an hour later he abandoned me in a less than salubrious part of town with a shrug of the shoulders.
Luckily a call to Kate Clow, the redoubtable English woman who set up the St Paul’s Trail brought me to my destination at approx 1am – Kate making her way through the back alleys to rescue me.
Late night beers with a few other Trekkers and the hotel owner who – I am delighted to report- was gratifyingly drunk by the time I arrived.
For some reason he launched into an anti German tirade with particular reference to that nation’s more military activities.
“Where do you come from ?” I asked the distinguished looking chap in his 70s sitting at our table
“Cologne,” he replied.
So it’s 8am. 6am UK time
I’m sitting under an orange tree in the sun. The swimming pool looks inviting. And two tortoises are nibbling my toes.
Ill start the walk tomorrow.