Ephesus- day two

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Middle East » Turkey
August 12th 2007
Published: October 22nd 2017
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Alex giggles down at the dog under the tableAlex giggles down at the dog under the tableAlex giggles down at the dog under the table

This is at the restaurant by Lake Bafa.
Geo: 37.9538, 27.3714

We had a nice breakfast at our hotel in the morning. It was the same basic spread that we have seen at our other hotels. One twist on it was a spread made with tahini (sesame paste) and grape syrup. It was different from anything I've had before and tasted pretty much like I would have expected it to. It wasn't bad, but I think I'd just stick with jam.

We headed out for the Basilica of St. John and some other ruins that are co-located with it. I'm afraid I can't report much about them because Alex wasn't feeling too well and I stayed back in the gate area with him so that he could be near the facilities. He made friends with the attendant who gave him grapes and more head pats. We watched a kitten and his mom for a while and found that entertaining. While the rest of the group was inside, Josh met and made friends with a teenager from South Korea who gave him a small plastic drum with the symbol of the S. Korean flag on it. He also bargained for an "ancient" coin from an "archeologist" on the site who had just happened to dig it up. We read in the guide books that this is pretty common and that one way that they "age" these coins is to use the digestive tracts of their sheep. There was no way Josh was going to buy one for 20 Lira, but they hit a reasonable price at 2YTL. This may have been the best bit of bargaining I've seen from him so far.

Alex pulled himself together and we headed over to the Ephesus museum where we were able to see some of the artifacts of Ephesus that had been excavated from the site. They had special exhibitions of Eros artifacts and a Gladiator section that was just fascinating! The boys especially came away very impressed with the weapons, bones and stone reliefs that they saw and were more enthusiastic about some of the things that they had seen the previous day when they knew that gladiators had been involved. I guess that was the "hook" they needed.

On the way out of town we stopped at a ceramics place to buy a few things that Grandpa wanted. We learned that if you show up on your own without a guide that everything is 50%
Mountains around Lake BafaMountains around Lake BafaMountains around Lake Bafa

There are so many ruins around here that sometimes it's hard to tell where the rocks end and the ruins begin
off! So, folks, if you ever come to Turkey, never shop with a guide! The good news is that I was still more impressed with the ceramics that I saw and bought in Capadoccia than I was with the ones there.
We started the drive for home with the idea that we would find lunch/dinner around Lake Bafa. This is a very large saltwater lake that used to be part of the Aegean. The mountains/hills around it have huge, rounded rocks sticking up out of them. I would guess that this is because they used to have water around them. The odd thing to me about Bafa is that it is a huge, beautiful lake with virtually no development around it whatsoever. After a little searching, we managed to find the small town near the town of Bafa and on the lake that was listed in the guidebook. Sure enough, there was plenty of rustic life to be seen, as promised in the book. It's primarily an agricultural area and there were lots of sheep, donkeys and cows, but the inhabitants are still on the lookout to make a quick lira from passing tourists. My mom bought a pretty piece
Temple of Zeus at EuromosTemple of Zeus at EuromosTemple of Zeus at Euromos

We basically stumbled on this on our way home from Ephesus. Supposedly Emperor Hadrian built this. The city reached its height of prosperity between 200 B.C. and 200 A.D.
of white cloth that is adorned with a hand-crocheted border and little flowers from a lady who was herding her two cows down the street.

We went to the "wrong" place for lunch, but it was fine. My mom had picked one out of the guidebook where she wanted to go, but got mixed up and directed us to another. By the time we got seated and she opened up the book again, it seemed silly to get up and leave. I laughed because one of the big draws for her was that the restaurant where she wanted to go had "all organic produce, most of it from their own garden." I had to point out that pretty much all of the produce we get everywhere here is organic and most of it from a garden that is at least close by. The salad, when it came, bore this notion out. The children, and the adults actually, were very pleased by the fresh, hand-cut fried potatoes. We had to order another dish of them. The Pelican restaurant where we ate had a beautiful view of the lake and the ruined church that we came to see (it sits out on an island). The only real downside was that it also had a very quaint view of cows in the barnyard and the flies that love them. Luckily there was a stiff breeze going that kept the smell going away from us and we never noticed it. All the leftovers from the meal went to a Labrador puppy. Before we left, Josh took some "renegade cow" videos and considered the purchase of a leather bracelet. Kate bought a beaded bracelet. Alex just beaned around.

We wound our way back through the countryside and headed for home. We had one more unexpected stop when I spotted what looked to be a ruined temple not too far off the road. When I saw a turn for it, I pulled off and we found ourselves in the ruined city of Euromos, home of the Temple of Zeus. I will get pictures up and you can look at it. It's the best preserved temple we've seen so far. The caretaker says that not many people come there because they just drive on by to Ephesus, but there was a fair amount to see. I have to say that we would have scooted off pretty quickly (there is a 5 YTL admission charge-pretty outrageous, I think), but Grandpa started chatting with the caretaker and they wandered all over the site together, including up the hill to the ruined theater. In the end, he only got 13 YTL out of us because that was all we had. He tried to sell a coin to dad, but the wallet was empty. They he tried to trade Dad for his watch. No dice!

The rest of the drive was uneventful. We listened to Harry Potter on the CD player. Wait, I take that back. I also pulled over by the side of the road at one point and made everyone watch the sun set over the water. I'm not sure exactly where we were, but I think it was even better than the two that we saw in Yalikavak. That's always a good way to end a day and an excellent way to cap off Grandpa's last day.

Additional photos below
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Josh started singing, "I ain't got nobody..."
Great fries by Lake BafaGreat fries by Lake Bafa
Great fries by Lake Bafa

I believe we've mentioned that fries here are usually served with mayo and ketchup. We wish they'd stop!
An amphora scale at our hotelAn amphora scale at our hotel
An amphora scale at our hotel

Amphora stack well, but they only sit upright if you have a holder.

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