Page 5 of Patricia Somewhere Travel Blog Posts

North America » United States » Florida » Gainesville October 28th 2008

To my blog readers: No, I am not on the road again, but a few days ago I went somewhere, not far at all. I left my office in the middle of the afternoon, under the Florida heat, to join the democrat crowd and to welcome Michelle Obama to Gainesville. It was very exciting being one of 11,000 enthusiasts ready for change, hopefully helping to make history. Michelle was a very good speaker and she definitely ignited the crowd. The US policies have affected the lives of so many, here in the US and abroad. Even as a traveler, I felt the negative effects. When travelling abroad, in many countries I no longer felt free, or more importantly, safe, to say “I came from the US”, afraid of becoming target of one of the many enemies ... read more
Let's restore the credibility of this flag
Rally in Gainesville

Middle East » Turkey » Central Anatolia » Cappadocia September 22nd 2008

Sorry it took long to finaly get to my last entry on Turkey, but here it is. Here in Cappadocia I have: 1- hiked THE SURFACE thru villages, mountains and caves 2- I have gone 8 floor levels BELOW THE SURFACE at an Underground city 3- ... and so, the obvious next move would be have to be going ABOVE THE SURFACE, like 1100 meters above ground, on a... HOT AIR BALLOON RIDE Yeah, I did it! The minute I laid my eyes on the fabulous terrain all around me in Cappadocia, I said: "If I'll ever go on a hot balloon ride, it will be here". And so it was. There isn't much negociating on the expensive price, even if you shop around. But it's one of those unique opportunities, and once I made up ... read more
Flowers & stone
Local Dolls
View from the balloon

Middle East » Turkey » Central Anatolia » Cappadocia September 20th 2008

WOW! What a magical place! Cappadocia is UNIQUE, unlike no other place, with its magnificent landscape reveling the curious cones, pyramids, mushrooms and hats of the fairy chimneys. No doubt one have to be here to marvel the place's wonders completely. Pictures fragment the whole scenario and in Cappadocia you are surrounded with 360 degrees of natual beauty. I never had so much trouble selecting pictures for a blog... I took hundreds but they still can't traslate the beauty of the place I experienced. That's it... you need to experience it and a still picture doesn't capture the feeling. GOREME VILLAGE: The town casted a spell on me immediately. It's fairytale like, with the fairy chimneys, ancient pigeon house, the stone walls, the tortuous cobblestone streets winding up and down the hills, flower pots made out ... read more
Ceiling of Cave church
Cappadocia landscape
Hiked to the top

Middle East » Turkey » Aegean September 13th 2008

IZMIR We did just a quick business stop in Izmir. Just a big city, nothing really special. The highlight was actually staying at a posh hotel with breakfast on the 37th floor, overlooking the Aegean Sea, while trying 11 types of cheese (out of 13!). I also got to try honey with the hive and all, which is common for breakfast, besides more yummy olives and dried fruit. My taste buds loved the experience but my stomach had to handle the bad consequences, probably from all the chesses. Being largely Muslin, the Turks don’t eat or touch pork, but at the Hilton, bacon was on the menu, for 9 Euros. You'd have to be a bacon-lover-rich-foreigner to order it… ESKI FOCA (Old Foca) We took a 2 hour bus ridefrom Izmir to the small coastal fishing ... read more
Foca Harbour
Fresh Veggies sold on streets
Over a Turkish Breakfast...

Middle East » Turkey September 11th 2008

Istanbul has been named Augusta Antonina and Constantinople, and nicknamed the Paris of the East during the glory days of the Ottoman Empire. Today, I witness a metropolis still reflecting the beauty of the past with added touches of today, as it continues to modernize. I started the second day very early in the morning, while most were still asleep. That’s a wonderful time to wander the quiet streets of any place and get a glimpse of its world without vendors, visitors, traffic. A few locals were starting the day pass by me: kids going to school, old ladies opening windows, cats stretching on top of walls. I window-shopped, admiring the beautiful Turkish carpets, ceramic, hats, and souveniers, without being pushed to buy anything. By 7:30am I thought of visiting the Blue Mosque before the ... read more
Turkish Coffee
Traditional dancer
Turkish Delight

Middle East » Turkey September 11th 2008

The uneasy feeling about Turkey generated by the movie “Midnight Express” has long been replaced about great curiosity about the country. While hopping around the Greek Islands years ago, many were the tourists telling me: “If you like Greece, you will love Turkey”. Surprised, I’d exclaim an astonished “Really!?", followed by a curious “Why?”, to hear answers like: “The people are friendly, the food is delicious, traveling and shopping is a bargain”. Turkey than became my dream destinatıon even though it's no longer a bargain destination. My curiosity about the Turkish culture has endured time. The world political climate after September 11 made me abandon the idea to venture into any Muslim country for a while. But since the world “climate” has improved and my reasons to go places are purely cultural, I refuse to let ... read more
Aya Sohia
Pretty teen face
Blue Mosque and Me

Asia » India » Rajasthan July 30th 2008

LAST LEG OF OUR INDIAN TRIP: How to get back to Dehli from Rishkeshi, for the flight out of India? Train would get us there either too early or too late; there were no tourist buses at this time of the year, and we were determined not to get into another public bus, ever again; taxi was too expensive, but appeared the best option. As we careful weigh our opinions, I got a message sent from a God (later I decided it was probably from Shiva, the God of destruction). The owner of the tour company we hired for the Golden Triangle trip, with Raju, the nightmare driver, was offering us a free ride to the airport in one of his cars, which happened to be in Rishkeshi. He had previously promised to make up for ... read more
Our car with broken side mirror & wind shield
Guru I prayed to protect us.
Our broken car & Amanda

Asia » India July 22nd 2008

HARIDWAR What a nice surprise this holy city by the Ganges was! Spiritually, it's more significant to Hindus than Rishikesh. It's one of the 7 sacred Indian cities, attracting a multitude of pilgrims and shadus to bathe and do "pujas" where the Gange River emerges from the Himalaya. Haridwar has the frantic confusion of the Indian cities, but in a much smaller scale. A huge plus was the fact that we were left alone, without pushy vendors or touts. The crowd was more interested on their pujas than on us. We hired a cycle-rickshaw for 3 hours (just little over one dollar) to visit the city. Kids waved to us and some hang from our cycle-riskshaw for a free ride. Friendly people all around. Har-ki-Pairi Ghat was an amazing site to witness Hindu rituals. It is ... read more
Har-ki-Pairi Ghat
Bathing on the Ganges
Priest in tiny blessing "temple"

Asia » India » Uttarakhand » Rishikesh July 20th 2008

LEAVING McLEOD WARNING: Do NOT take the train ride from McLeod to Rishikesh. It's hell! We were told 11.5 hours; it took 24 hours in stinking crowded bus and train. The train station is too far from McLeod, particularly since the bus driver stops too often. The bus ticket was much cheaper, but we were told: "the train is so much more comfortable"! So, we bought an "AC/sleeper ticket"..., or so we thought! The train station is in Pathankot and how to get there was a matter of "math": 90 Rupees for bus versus 1,500 Rupees for a taxi. The bus seems the logic choice, right? WRONG!! We know that because we decided to leave raining McLeod on a freaking public bus, the dirtiest we had gotten here in India, again packed way beyond capacity and ... read more
Paid for air-conditioner, got these non-working fans:
Sniffing bubble gum to buffer the bad smell
Migrating family in the bus

Asia » India July 16th 2008

QUICK STOP IN NAAGAR Loving the scenery and peace of the Parvati Valley (minus the Israeli crowd), we decided to go to the town of Naagar on the Kullu Valley. Another great breakfast at Moon dance Cafe taking in the mountain views, followed by another rollercoaster bus ride on the super narrow roads, with the squeeky brakes, the blind curves and the old bus packed beyond capacity. I sat by an interesting local man caring a basket full of fresh roses. He shared that he picks the flowers from his garden every morning, filling the basket which he drops at a road side Hindu "temple" (it's actually just a tree with red and golden cloth and ribbons around it: see picture) on the way to work. And so it happened: the driver stopped, he handed the ... read more
During a "kora" with a friendly Tibetan old lady
Protest against the Chinese and the Olympic games on the streets...
Monks and colorful croks

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