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S: TURKEY: December 18-31, 2010 Vol. I

BC: Pamukkale

FC: Ephesus

1: Itinerary Saturday, December 18: Left Detroit Airport on overnight flight to Paris, Charles De Gaulle Sunday, December 19: Arrive to Istanbul after connecting from Paris Monday, December 20: Anzac Cemetery; Lone Pine; Ferry ride; Gallipoli Tuesday, December 21: Troy; Izmir; Kusadasi Wednesday, December 22: Virgin Mary's House; Ephesus; Temple of Artemis; Thursday, December 23: Aphrodisias; Hieropolis; Pamukkale; Friday, December 24: Konya; Whirling Dervish Museum Saturday, December 25: Goreme; Turkish Carpets; Folk Dancing Sunday, December 26: Cappadocia Region: Fairy Chimneys; Valley of Imaginations; Underground City of Oskonak; Monday, December 27: Ankara; Mauseleum of Ataturk; Civilization Museum Tuesday, December 28: King Midas' Tomb; Bursa; Mosque tour Wednesday, December 29: Istanbul; Hippodrome; Blue Mosque; Cruise of the Bosphorus Thursday, December 30: Tokapi Palace; Hagia Sophia; Grand Bazaar Friday, December 31: Flight home

2: Detroit to Paris | Taylor, Grandma and Tyler ready to board our AirFrance Flight to Paris | Sunday morning over the Atlantic Ocean

3: Europe was having one of the worst snow storms in history the December we went to Turkey. When we flew into Paris, the airport was closed and there were no terminals open for the plane to dock. We had to stay on the plane for 3 hours in a whiteout. Finally we were able to dock and luckily the airport reopened and our flight to Istanbul left 1 1/2 hours later. | The whiteout conditions at the Paris Airport

4: OUR HOTEL IN ISTANBUL. TASLIK HOTEL | This was a very interesting hotel! First we had no luggage, half the baseboards were missing, and we are pretty sure we ate camel sausages the first morning for breakfast. We met up with our group the following morning and starting our adventure in TURKEY | Turkey

5: Gallipoli | Our first day of tour, we came upon a very typical Turkish restaurant that was an adjourning building to a gas station. This is very typical in Turkey. Here we were able to taste typical Turkish cuisine and to many of us were surprise by the commode in the lady's room. EASTERN TOILETS! Luckily we did not have to use them because "western style" was available. Needless to say there were a flock of women in the restroom taking pictures. | HOW TO USE AN EASTERN TOILET: 1. Do your business 2. place tissues in trash container 3. fill bucket by faucet with water 4. Pour water into toilet. 5. Pull chain hanging from ceiling to flush | Stuffed Zucchini with rice. Yummy!

6: Where's the Zoo?

7: On our first lunch stop of the trip, they had a small "petting zoo" of several animals you could take pictures of and admire.

8: ANZAC CEMETERY We had to privilege to stop at Gallipoli to see where the Ottomans and Australians fought during WWI. This is a cemetery dedicated to the Aussie soldiers who gave their lives on the Turkish shores. This was also a BIG highlight for me. I have only dreamed of touching the waters of the Aegean and my dream came true! It was so wonderful to accomplish this and realize how blessed I have been to travel around the world.

9: A comforting sight to see: The CROSS

10: Anzac Cemetery

11: View overlooking the Aegean

12: Battle at the Lone Pine was a WWI Battle between the Ausssies and the Ottomans.

14: WWI trenches that are left in the hillside. It was amazing to see and walk inside these pieces of history.

15: CRUISIN' | Our ferry cruise | Europe to Asia

16: View of our Turkish port aboard the ferry

17: Some delicious food in Cannakkle! Top Left: Tyler's Mackerel (We had to have a de-boning session) Top Right: Turkish cake coated in syrup (every Turkish dessert was drenched in syrup) Bottom Left: My delicious, scrumptious chicken Bottom Right: Taylor's flan dessert

18: LUGGAGE? | We just learned the fate of our luggage aboard the ferry...

19: OUR LUGGAGE TALE When we first arrived to Istanbul without our luggage, we were told that our bags were found in Paris and were scheduled to fly to Istanbul in the early morning. That was a bunch of bologna. Our tour guide helped us with the language barrier the next day when contacting the company who was in charge of retrieving our bags. It appeared that the young lady who we spoke to at the airport when we arrived did not understand what Grandma was trying to tell her. Even though she copied our itinerary and hotel information. While on our ferry cruise, looking forward to having our luggage in several hours, we got terrible news... two bags were missing in Paris. The other two bags would not arrive until Thursday. We had no clue who's bags were missing and who's were found. I had a purple suitcase and Grandma had a green one so we thought ours were found. The other two were black. So the pictures to the left are us finding out the fate of our precious luggage. We were angry, sad, confused, outraged, sad, angry, confused, and outraged. I think you can understand how we felt now. It wasn't until after we received our luggage and put on clean jeans that we could laugh about it. We finally heard on Thursday that the other two bags were found. Instead of getting the first two bags on Thursday, we got them on Friday. We were so excited when we got to the hotel that night.. Who's bags were gonna be there?/We watched anxiously as Burcu (pronounced Bur-jew) rolled the bags to us.Whose was it??? THE TWO BLACK LUGGAGE CASES Everyone clapped as we cried. Tyler and Taylor cried with joy and Grandma and I cried tears of sadness. How could those colorful bags get lost and the black ones not? At least Taylor shared her clothes with me and Tyler gave Grandma fresh socks. The next day, Christmas Eve 2010, in Konya, Grandma and I got the best Christmas presents ever.. OUR LUGGAGE.

20: TROY

22: Troia: Home to Priam, Hector, Paris, and Helen | The fields shown indicate where the Aegean once was, now 5 miles away

25: Troy was a city that was built 9 different times by 9 different civilizations. The picture on the left shows several different "Troy layers" Priam's Troy was Troia #6

26: All 9 layers of Troy can be seen in this picture | Trojan Council House

27: Top Left: Remains of Priam's Palace walls. I was able to retrieve a small stone that was tucked away in between two blocks. Right: Ramp belonging to Troy #1 and proves the Trojan Horse was pulled into the city.

28: Turkish Countryside along the Aegean Sea

29: Hello Everyone, Turkey is beautiful! Full of olives, olives, and more olive tree! The people are so friendly and I feel like I'm stepping back into time. Love, Chelsea | Williamson Family 6540 US 127 Paulding, Ohio 45879 U.S.A

30: Izmir

31: Izmir is the 3rd largest city in Turkey with a 4 mil. population. Izmir was also once home to the famous Homer and most importantly, Izmir was called Smyrna, one of the Seven Churches of Asia talked about in the book of Revelation.

32: Virgin Mary's House

33: Virgin Mary is believed to have lived her final years of life in a house up in the hills outside of Ephesus. She was brought there by John as a promise made to Christ on theCross. There are no records of Mary at Ephesus, except for a church named 'Church of Mary'. It wasn't until the 1930s When a nun had a vision of a hills with trees and a spring and saw this house. Years later, an expedition took place and found the house of Mary. | Holy water spring | wall of wishes to the Virgin Mary

34: EPHESUS | Funny sign outside the entrance gate at Ephesus along the shops

35: The bottom picture is not the famous stadium at Ephesus, but the Council Stadium where the business of Ephesus was discussed.

36: 1. | 2. | 1. Statue of Goddess Nike 2. Picture of the Library of Celsus from the Main street

37: 3. | 4. | 5. | 3. Another look down the main boulevard 4. Mosaic street 5. Close-up of Mosaic street

38: Several random pictures of Ephesus. The two bottom pictures were taken inside of the old Roman Bath House

39: The top two are from a temple dedicated to the goddess Medussa. The Library of Celsus and a duck Mosaic are the others.



42: The Library | of | Celsus

43: The inside walls of the Library where the many scrolls of papyrus were stored. Engraving by the German Archeologist that discovered Ephesus. | The Library had double walls to keep out the moisture and the humidity from destroying the important scrolls. I discovered these walls behind a corner inside the | Library. I believe these are the double walls. *These walls are not on display to the public.I was exploring upon my discovery*

44: Outside the Library

45: The Market Place

46: Stadium of Ephesus | Where St. Paul was to speak

47: ...But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us. Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:... -Ephesians 2: 4-8 | approx. 24,000 people could fit in this stadium. This estimates the population of Ephesus was 240,000. Imagine trying to preach to 24,000 angry Ephesians! | The acoustics is still so good you can stand at the top of the second layer and hear someone snap their fingers on the stage! | STAGE | 2ND LAYER

48: Temple of Artemis at Ephesus | Here lies the slim remains of the grand Temple of Artemis (below). The top left picture is the Basilica of St. John, where the remains of St. John are said to be. | / | Basilica of St. John

49: The beautiful view from our hotel room in the wonderful city of Kusedasi, Turkey! This was my favorite stop of the whole trip. You can see Greek islands in the distance.

50: Pomegranetes, the fruit of gods

51: Home of Aphrodite

52: Sign used by early Christians to spread their faith secretly/

53: Mystical | Aphrodisias

54: Council Stadium

55: The lion paws represent the power of the council

56: The 30,000 seat, 2x the size of football field | <-------------

57: ........ STADIUM OF APHRODISIAS | If you looked up the definition of GIGANTIC, this is it. This site is so impressive and the best part...you can walk the entire length and explore the entrances at the bottom. The arches at the top were stores and concessions during the games. The stony area (marked with an arrow) is where they fed Christians to lions before Aphrodisias was a Christian city.

58: Pamukkale | a Natural Wonder

59: Calcified | Terraces

60: Pamukkale was Grandma's favorite stop of the trip. She had been looking forward to this day since we receive the itinerary in the mail. This was unbelievable. We were able to walk on a strip of the terraces barefoot. It was hard, slimy, slippery, smooth, rough, and warm. These pictures do not do them justice. | *Chelsea somehow got stung by a bee down her shirt. This caused great irritation and put a damper on Pamukkale for her. Tyler also got lost here by exploring the Hierapolis at sunset. We were afraid he would not make it back...alive. But he made it back, 3 minutes after our curfew with the bus.*

62: Photo with Camel: 1TL | The morning following Pamukkale, we stopped to see the terraces with the sunrise. At the stop was a Turk and his camel. He had a sign that said, "Photo Camel- 1 TL. We were so excited to sit on a camel! We could actually feel his spine move as we sat on the hump!! When we were done, the man changed his price to 10 TL a picture! We were not happy and did not give him the full 20 TL. However, it was a once-in-a-lifetime experience! Thanks Grandma!

63: We've moving out of the Aegean and into the Central Plains of Turkey. Hello fields and mountains!

64: Karavanserai | Holy and Clean place where the Muslims could pray along their journey | These acted as hotels during the time of the Caravans. The Caravans could stop here along the Silk Road and rest for the night.

65: Inside the main room where people and camels slept | Absolutely Amazing!

66: Turkish Countryside | The mountains are actually volcanoes. This was the first time I had ever seen a volcano!

67: Average Turks in the country. Here the people tend to be more conservative Muslims

68: Rock | Dwellings

69: Pigeon Holes for correspondence | Christian Symbol

71: Goreme was a Monastery and Abbey. This work of art is truly amazing to behold!When the Muslims arrived and took over Goreme, they scratched the eyes off of every hand painted figure. Photos were not allowed to be taken wherever there were paintings, but I was able to sneak one picture. It's hard to believe this little village was carved out of the side of a cliff. | Goreme

72: Dying the yarn

73: This is where I bought my authentic Turkish Carpet!

74: Carpets, carpets, and more carpets! We were given a show on all these beautiful carpets! The bottom right is the carpet that I purchased. It was the one BIG purchase I planned to make in Turkey!

75: We were served chai tea, apple tea (pictured), white or red wine during the presentation. The right two pictures are the same rug. The rug is 100% silk and when the lights are turned off with a light behind the rug, it becomes GOLD!

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  • By: Chelsea W.
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