It was a good decision to move to Friendship Cove. The sea is a smooth mirror. (Usla’s photo of the sunken baths.) Legend has it that Mark Anthony built the baths and gave Cleopatra the entire Turquoise Coast as a wedding gift. There is a sense of delight to think about swimming in the same spot as Cleopatra. I’m not quite ready to face the cold waters and unsure of my upper body strength since the accident, so I remain cautious. This day, April 26th, is a scheduled hike, up a mountain, down the other side, up another mountain and down the other side, steep, rocky about 4 hours long. I’m unsure. I climbed the Superstitious Mountains out of Apache Junction in 2012, before the accident, straight up, two hours for spectacular views. Usla offers an alternative, to head in the opposite direction and take a shorter 50 minute hike and meet them coming down.
The long hike photos are Usla’s. The hikers are motored to the shore in batches.
Mike, Norman, Owen, Barbara, Joan and Judith pause on the hike for a photo. The hike is described as pine-shaded, with the smell of wild herbs and the music of goat bells.
The goal is to meet with a shepherd family. The wife has prepared them some shepherds bread and they will talk about their remote lifestyle. Here they meet the family. The shepherd allows his goats to eat in the wild. They return at night to be milked and get water. They eke an existence from the dairy products, living off the land, and wooden spoons that he makes and sells. Their house is very small.
In the meantime, the rest of us are headed up the back way with Mehenten. A typically steep and rocky trail like others we’ve seen in Turkey.
We take a break in the shade of this copse of trees with a stone structure. Mehenten doesn’t know what it’s function is.
We find a shepherd’s rest stop seemingly in the middle of nowhere. Just a few boards with a tarp over the top attached to a tree. A rudimentary shelter for a nap, and a quick cup of coffee or a drink of water.
We join the main group at a Greco-Roman site called Lydea.
Below the temple is another shepherd’s place in the valley. He lives in much the same way as the others. The rest stop may belong to him.
On both hikes, beautiful views of the Turquoise Coast, lovely coves, and blue, blue waters.
On our return, Usla takes a group photo.
After a change of clothing, I pop up on deck and hear a great splash. Owen jumping off the railing. (Usla’s photo.)
I know he is a good swimmer, but I probably would have nixed the idea. Too late, Gramma.
Since he already jumped, I made him do it again for the camera, not realizing that Usla had gotten him jumping.
As they say, all’s well that ends well. Who could argue with that big happy smile anyway.
After lunch, just about everyone braved the cold water and it is cold according to Gina, Joel and Maria. Maria can swim to land and back to the boat without stopping. She is a very strong swimmer. Gina is gung-ho. She says, “yes, its a bit cold.” Brrr! I stuck my hand in and it came back rigid.
The Captain decided to barbeque chicken for dinner. After dinner, some played cards, caught up with their journals and some watched a movie about the battle of Galliopli. A horrific loss of life through the stupidity of Allied leaders who failed to plan or assess the cost and horror of attempting to cross Turkey and capture a harbor for Russia. They needlessly sent 100,000 men to their death and gained nothing.
I had more pictures but the signal is loading so slowly, I gave up.