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9 AUG - Istanbul, Turkey

Date received: Thu Aug 09 2001, 10:08 AM PDT

A slight change in plans.

After several days of arguing with various authorities in registration/customs/exports, they definitively said that I cannot take a Turkish motorbike outside of the country if I am not a resident or if I don't have a work visa. There are a few outside chances I could have tried, but at some point you have to draw a line, and this was it. I don't want to invest thousands of dollars and another month only to get stuck at the Turkish border.

So, after almost two months of roller-coaster attempts to get my motorcycle travel leg off the ground, I have given up. I am moving to plan B (or maybe I'm on plan X by now): I am going by bicycle. It has always been in the back of my mind, but I really wanted to make the motorcycle trip work.

So now, I need to get my bicycle together. I have decided that I would rather take my own bike, rather than buy everything here, and since I don't really want to make my friends sift through all of my possessions trying to find all of my things, I am going home to sort it out myself. This is also an excuse to see family and friends, who I haven't seen in almost a year. I managed to arrange a flight for tomorrow. I will be in San Francisco Friday evening. I will stay two or three weeks, then return to Istanbul.


Copyright 2000 Peter Birch All Rights Reserved.