THIS POST MAY CONTAIN AFFILIATE LINKS. PLEASE READ THE DISCLOSURE FOR MORE INFO.
Currently on my third visit, Turkey is making its way up the list of favourite destinations. Other than the last 16 hours of November, I spent the whole month in Turkeys 4th biggest city, Antalya. I finished the month in Adana, Turkey.
The month was solid, but I’ll admit it wasn’t the most fun month ever.
(the links takes you to the location on Google Maps)
>>>The Highlight Reel<<<
Volunteering At The Turkish Airlines Open (golf)
It was totally worth coming to Antalya for this. The tournament was from the 2nd – 5th of November. Including a day before the event, this was all I thought about for to start the month. The volunteer organisers, Peter and Loy, made the experience awesome. I was ball spotting most of the time, which isn’t the most glamourous of gigs, but I enjoyed being around golf again (and the food was good!).
We get complimentary rounds of golf at the course too, unfortunately they were issued as I was leaving Antalya. Guess I’ll have to go back next year?
RELATED POST: WHY YOU SHOULD VOLUNTER AT A GOLF TOURNAMENT
Cutting Back On Coke Zero
I admit, I was in a pretty bad habit. My Coke Zero consumption was at least 500 mls a day for a few months now and leading up to the marathon I figured it would need to continue as not to ‘rock the boat’.
Weirdly, confessing to a friend how much I was drinking which led him to say he can’t wait to tell his wifey. That freaked me out and I basically went cold turkey except for 1L on the two Thursdays before the race. That’s a significant change. Unfortunately, I’m never great at noticing the changes, but no doubt they’re all positive.
What I have noticed? The decrease in plastic waste I’m creating. THat was the other motivation.
Making Some Videos
Over the last few months, I’ve filmed plenty but never got around to putting anything together. Struggling to sleep one night I was spurred into action. Since then, I’ve posted a few videos on Facebook. Not pro videos for sure, but people say you need to do something for fun before taking things seriously, right?
Running All Over Antalya
With a bit of pressure after committing to the Mersin Marathon in a private FB group my buddy Megan created, I was running all over Antalya (198.86km according to MapMyRun). Send me a DM on Facebook if you want to add me on MapMyRun. I came up with some cool fun ideas for running motivation to write about over the coming weeks.
Cheap Domestic Flights
If hyou come to Turkey, make sure you look into internal flights across the country. THey can be incedibly cheap, even if you book a couple days in advance. I’ve booked three flights (Istanbul to Antalya, Antalya to Adana, Adana to Izmir) and the most I’ve paid is 15 euro, and that includes a checked bag!
They have been as cheap, if not cheaper than the bus. While I like hitching, sometimes it doesn’t feel worth it to me.
Lol, this isn’t saying much. But it was cool and rewarding to cook my meals. Antalya isn’t a vegan-friendly place, and given my energy output was significantly high than normal (because running) I was making sure to consume a lot of calories. So it was time for some boil-ups (it counts as cooking!)
The standard meal was lentils, zucchini, and eggplant. Thankfully the farts could have definitely been a lot worse. The original plan was to eat the exact same thing every day, but that didn’t last long for no particular reason.
Lack Of English
I realise I’m spending time in a country where I should learn the language but I struggled this month. Not with learning Turkish but finding people to have a fluent conversation in English with. In the hostel I was staying at, the occupancy rate of my 5-bed dorm was about 30% (1.5 people) and a few of those who were in the room, spoke little English. I’m trying to get better at asking questions but that’s tough when needing to resort back to the ultra basics to get any conversation going. I could have searched harder for people no doubt./rant
With a lack of people to talk to at length regularly, I was on my own a lot this month and should have produced a lot of content. But I fell into my old ways and watched way too many videos on YT and scrolled FB mindlessly.
Being Called A Terrorist
On the second Friday of November, I was waiting at the lights en route to a Couchsurfing meetup when a cop grabbed me by the shoulder. Despite the language barrier, he was having a bad day. The only word I understood was passport, which I wasn’t carrying (never do). Turns out that’s illegal in Turkey. He was then directing the word terrorist towards me in a loud voice, not exactly comforting.
After a few minutes convincing him my I wasn’t a terrorist (he could also say deport which had me thinking do I get to choose where I’m deported too?), he let me go.
Tip: Always have a copy of your passport on your phone. I was asked for my passport two more times during the month, and showing a photo on the phone was totally ok (they were both way more fun as well).
Losing All My Photos:
Towards the end of October my phone died as I was hitching from Albania to Greece. It was a slow death and despite trying everything, I had to do a hard reset of the iPhone losing everything on there. This included losing about 7,000 of my 8,000 photos because I am hopeless at backing things up 🙁
I’d started to back them up on this awesome program DeeGo (100 GB of free cloud storage) but was too little too late before she died. Brightside: have purchased iCloud storage now!
What I Finished Reading In November 2017
I’ll start expanding more on books I’ve read in upcoming editions of The Monthly Rundown once I’ve figured out what I can do to make the info useful.
- The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell – 8/10 would read again.
- The Rat Chasers Olympics by Colin Cotterill – 6/10 don’t need to read again.
- Real Artists Don’t Starve by Jeff Goins – 8/10 Reminded me a lot of Stephen Presswells book so would read chapters again, sporadically.
Blog Posts From November
- Attempting To Recreate An Ancient Olympics Running Event
- My Dream Road Trip In Australia
- A Recap Of The Experience Of Watching Turkey Play Albania In Football
- The Most Popular Sports In India
- Tips For Tourists Going To Watch Football In Western Europe (guest post)
What’s Coming Up In December
THE BIG RACE DAY IS TOMORROW (December 3rd) AS I DRAFT THIS POST, woo.
I’ll be hanging in the Adana/Mersin area until 5th of December when I fly to Izmir. There are no fixed plans from there, but the theory is I’ll be flying to India (possibly Morocco) sometime in mid-late December.
Also, want to attempt a three day fast at some point in December. Have done a few 48 hour fasts in the past, but no 72 hour one yet.