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Published: June 20th 2009
Today there was excellent breakfast followed by a trip to the local weekly market. The market here is not all that large (compared to, say, Ayvalik) but we did find all one would reasonably expect. Seasonal vegetables, fruit, herbs, cheese, honey, clothes, houseware and spices. We bought paprika and pul biber.
We picked up the rucksack and dropped off the spices before catching the minibus to Ephesus. The site was extremely crowded - we think a large cruise ship had docked in Kusadasi was taking people around, one give away being the crew members in naval whites. Many from the ship seemed more interested in taking photos than trying to understand the site and Ephesus is not a difficult site to understand. Others turned the place into a fashion show, stumbling around in heels or complaining that their clothes were getting dusty. It was funny to watch.
We heard the official and licensed guides say some very strange things. One had this amazing story about the place belonging to the Amazons. And everything prior to the Romans being a matriarchy. Another (in the museum) explained that, before the Romans, there had been no attempt at portraiture. I was standing
by a bust labelled '5th century BC general' - quite clearly Pericles but I said nothing. I'm just glad I can still date pottery without reading the labels.
We took a load of photos. It's an interesting enough site and very well restored. There's further restoration work going on at the moment and it will be very good to see it when it's finished. It's not as big or as hot as I remembered it. And, on the way back down (unless you start at the top you need to walk up then back down again) it was far less crowded and far more pleasant. The theatre is immense, one of the larget in Asia, the Library is fabulous, I think I shall let the photos talk for themselves....
The museum was as expected, there are some nice bits, including some small bronzes, one or two decent busts, a fabulous ivory frieze and of course, the Artemis statues. It is also air conditioned which after spending a few hours in the sun was a welcome relief.
We got back into town around 3:30 - took another stroll round the market which was more crowded than it had
been in the morning - then Ashley had a shave and his ears singed. So he is keeping up the beard-free-look. We bought some cookery mags on the way back to the hotel and we're sitting on the terrace reading them now.
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