Thursday January 17, 2008


The day started out like any other day, the normal delicious Turkish breakfast with a discussion of last night’s shenanigans, in this case we talked about last night’s cannon ball contest in Pammukale’s healing water with a couple of Turkish guys, you know, the usual. After breakfast we headed out to Laodicea, a location with recently excavated ruins, most of which were Roman. We found shards of ancient glass, and even bones! Seeing the divots in the Roman streets made by their wagons amazed me and sent my mind whirling, so at least two thousand years ago Romans walked where we were walking, haggled and lived their day to day lives where I was standing; it is mind boggling to me. After leaving Laodicea we headed to Heiropolis where there were was a necrocropolis, a gigantic theatre, the Martyriumum, calcium deposits that looked like mountains of ice, and Cleopatra’s pool. While walking through the necrocropolis my eyes were filled to the brim with the stone tombs littered everywhere throughout the mountains, you couldn’t look anywhere without seeing a tomb that’s beauty still seeps through the lichen that covers it. We then hiked up to the theatre, which was the largest we’ve seen so far; it could easily seat at least fifteen thousand. A couple of us then set off hiking up the mountain towards the martyriumum, its octagonal shape was beautiful with its uniquely angled arches, such advanced architecture that it has withstood the test of time. Five of us climbed up on top of one of the arches and sat there enjoying each other’s company and the scenery; we were in awe of Turkey. Then while the rest of the group went to see the almost mythical looking calcium deposits, I played backgammon with our driver Yücel by Cleopatra’s pool and then swam in it. Cleopatra’s pool is filled with ancient columns and all sorts of ruins and is said to make one more beautiful, it was a magical experience and I came out feeling refreshed, relaxed, and more beautiful then ever, although my backgammon playing was much less than magical and certainly anything but beautiful. We all trekked back to the bus after spending at least four hours in Heiropolis, I think we all were a bit sad leaving such a phenomenal site, I know I was, but the sunset guided us back to our bus, and from there to our hotel. Everyday has been my favorite day here in Turkey; I just can’t wait for the next!

Jessica Thomas