04 May 2007

Holiday Diaries: Introduction

The last piece of reading before I came to Moscow was "20 Days without War" by Simonov. It was roughly about the writer's escape from the Stalingrad frontlines away to Tashkent. So I have decided to name this diary "11 days without Moscow"...after all it was an escape..

It all started a month ago when Oguz, a colleague and partner-in-crime, came up with a weird idea: to be wasted in Amsterdam for a week.

Oguz Turan, my partner-in-crime and a very well-known invader in Moscow, in his latest ad campaign for Pipi Beverages.

After initial enthusiasm, the necessity and the respective fiscal burden of a Schengen visa (the last barrier of Turkish Invasion to Europe) and the fact that it would cost a fortune and our health to stay in Amsterdam for a week, we decided to find a holiday spot that is both economical and welcome to Turks as much as possible. To our surprise, Croatia, eager to get its post-war status of a favourite holiday destination, wasn't asking for any visa to Turkish citizens (a mistake they will soon regret) and Bosnia, the neighboring country which has close historical and cultural ties to Turkey (because of the fact that we practically invaded their lands for hundreds of years) was also in our sphere of touristical interest.

Dinc, exploiting his partisan background near Neretva river.

Added to our crew, Baris, another colleague with a history of backpacking, threw his enthusiasm and joined us through our oblivious journey through the Balkans.

Baris Yenigun, the acclaimed civil engineer and another veteran invader in Moscow, known for his good-looks and irresistable hair, tasting Borek in Zagreb.

We only had a draft route and deliberately didn't make any reservations, not to make it another fat european package holiday. To our surprise those countries also had a large surplus (and supply) of private accomodation, which made up of a considerable amount of household income. The route was to begin in Zagreb and continue to Sarajevo by train, then to see the bridge in Mostar and go to Dubrovnik by bus. After Dubrovnik we wantyed to go to Split and back to Zagreb...everyhting was to be spontaneous..and so were.

The Crew: Oguz the "Hostel Man", Dinc the "Breadman" and Baris the "Boris, the unlikely Russian"

The journey started with our whisky soaked take-off from Moscow on 20th April...

(Next: Zagreb: The city that doesn't work)

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