We are staying at the lovely Elmwood Historic Inn (here) for two nights. I've just finished a lovely breakfast and am sitting in the parlour, complete with an Anne of Green Gables rag doll beside me.
Steve is here for several meetings on his new research project, the ARK. It was a 1960's experimental project to combine old technologies with modern life expectations and was very cool. But the community it was built in thought they were mad, they had just added indoor plumbing to their homes, why would anyone want a composting toilet. Pierre Treudeau loved it but most of PEI didn't. Anyhow, out of this game little project, things like solar heating, passive solar heating, circles of carbon and so forth developed. Steve can write his own blog if he wants to explain it all better, but I'm moving on.
Work on the giant hanky continues. I'll be stitching on it later this morning while I watch the latest video from Karen Ruane.
"Turkey?" you ask. "Alright!" I say.
Capedocia. Apparently this community arose from Christians fleeing persecution. The soft stone was chiseled out with tools that had blades about 2 inches wide. You could see the chisel stroke lines in the walls. This area was originally the site of volcanic detrius of different kinds. Soft stone underneath bals... stone. I know it wasn't balsamic, that's vinegar, but something that starts with bals... Chapels, homes, monestaries, convents, farms, and a larger Cathedral were all carved out of the rock. Guards pevented us from taking indoor photos. In the meantime, the inhabitants were chased out during the 1940's or so, and it is now a tourist destination. There are several towns and villages in the valley that still blend the caves with new construction but we could see these only from the look off spots.
This is a convent, but unstable due to earthquake damage. Doors originally tended to be set back as you can see below, but earthquakes have damaged most of the stair cases leading up to dwellings and front passage ways have fallen away.
Ishel is enjoying the day in Capedocia. I nearly threw up when she did this. I have no idea if there is a steep drop behind her.
Each day in Turkey something happened that was huge, impactful, delightful, generous, thought provoking and (not or) life altering. We were there for 10 days. That is a lot of inputs. I am unable to have a favourite location because it was all so powerful. However, given a chance to return, I would vote for this spot. I would love to see how the farming was done in a desert valley, how the water was stored, how you moved from your own home to visit a friend across the gorge, how do you light the rooms without smothering yourself with fumes. It was fascinating. And the effort! In one chapel nave, where a statue would have stood, the tool used to chip away the stone was not much wider than a flat screw driver. I can't imagine the dedication to beautify a cave for a statue that might not be well lit. Or kneeling on stone floors to pray. Or hauling fuel or waste around. Or any of it. We think the pioneers must have had it tough, but this environment, with the harsh sun, little arable soil and no near by river must have been grueling. Yet is existed for hundreds of years and has modernized itself very nicely into the landscape.
What would you like to see next? The Haiga Sofia, Ephesius, more mosques, tile work, a palace?