Still on the train from Istanbul but due to arrive in Erzurum mid afternoon. The events of the day were very much the same as yesterday - staring faces and salesmen. Our visitors included a young Turkish man and we walked with him to the restaurant car, which was at the far end of the train. Another man offered us some hash (this would be the most regular interruption to our days until we reached Malaysia!). We played cards and read to pass the time. The scenery changed as the train passed through the countryside against a backdrop of snowy mountain peaks - there was a lot of snow. The villages looked much poorer and it was noticeable how many were mud huts rather than brick. There was also a number of army barracks. After 41 hours for our £1 fare, the train arrived at Erzurum at 3pm.
Clearly we were travelling along a well trodden route as a coach was waiting at the station to take us to a hotel (6TL) and entice us to book with Mihar Tours for the bus journey to Teheran for £3.50 - there were five of us in our party. Hotel Aras was very handily situated next door to the coach station. Our dormitory had 5 beds, cold water and grubby sheets ( thank goodness for the warm clean personal sleeping bag) and everywhere felt damp. We went for a walk and bought some food for Friday's journey. Michael had decided to sell some of his excess clothes especially the inner lining from a outdoor casual jacket and this led to some amusing conversations. One attempted sale was in a hotel - we were provided with some free tea and enjoyed a friendly chat before the owner touched Heather's leg and so we quickly moved on. Dinner was kebab and soup but alas the meat was not too good a quality. Tired, cold and damp it was time for an early night ready for the 5.30am start of tomorrow's coach trip.
Travelled overland to Australia in 1972 taking 4 months and after 20 months in Australia travelled back through Indonesia taking 3 months. I have read and admired lots of blogs on this website and have decided to add my diary from my first travels. I will endeavour to update my pages in line with the 1972 dates. Unfortunately my films from London to Kabul were lost in the post and therefore I cannot add my own photographs until later in the journey! The first ten days were spent travelling through Germany and some days were staying with student friends hence they are less challenging (and mayb... full info