Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Eroded Beauty (On The Road Of Beauty)

Pamukalle is co-located with the ancient city of Hieropolis. I can't remember exactly, but I think the people latest there a little longer than others we visited.

For me, it kind of highlighted the pointlessness of a graveyard. You fancy thing up, remind the qorld how great you are by method of a sprucy airy tomb facing the rising sun or whatever and what happens? Ypur family pack up and leave town, graverobbers come and steal the food and wine you carefully had placed in there in case you woke up and some donkey from Australia shows up in 800 years, climbing on your tomb like nobody's business asking annoying questions like "what sort od people lived here?" and "why did they leave?" and "wasn't this a healing city, why are there so many graves?"

He has to ask these questions you see, because his tour guide offers information like a fish offers a good meal. That is to say, you can only enjoy it if you like fish and you can only get information out of him if you are a blonde Hungarian female wearing a bikini in the hot baths. Another way to put it is that our tour guide was a geologist.

Pamukalle is both gifted and cursed as it is located right on a fault line. Turkey suffers from regular earhquakes, most indetectable to people (except probably information scrooging geologists). There's one particular earthquake that the church in Hieropolis should have noticed though. Actually, based on their chosen location for the church they couldn't possibly pretend not to know a fault line existed there, because the church was built right on top of it. Split right down the middle!

Some carefully architectures Roman arches remain, along with a huge amphitheatre atill in use, but for the most part it seems earthquakes won the battle against the people of Hieopolis.

The blessing part of the fault lines is that gases from the earth can get out to heat the mineral waters at Pamukalle. The high calcium content allows the water to forms pools of a very distinctive shape. As the waters escape they carry enough calcium with them to form naural aqueducts and continue over and over again to make massive walls, I'll get the photos up after I have returned home.

The calcium deposits also take over the landscape and start to fossilise many of the things they get their mitts on. We took a photo of a 10 year old discarded glass bottle which is now a part of the rock. I imagine it will tell people in 3000 years that we liked to litter.

So while Sefu was hopeless on the people side of the equation, he provided great insight to the geological goings on in Pamukalle and Hieropolis.

Eroded Beauty really continues in Cappadoccia, but I certainly don't have room for that here but I must mention the bus system here.

It's incredible. The entire country is connected through a magic bus system, that may not always run on time but seems to always get you there. The whole trip has been like that actually. If you were to ask me how I got from Istanbul to where I am sitting now I don't think I could possibly explain it.

You arrive in a town that's not where you thought you were getting off but the bus has cleared out. You only have time to wonder "is this a problem?" before a guy with no ID shows up, 'shouts' at a bunch of guys in Turkish, pauses to say "no problem, 5 minutes no problem", 'shouts' a bit more and then puts you on another bus that takes you where you want to go.

What's miraculous is that they do this without ever looking at your ticket or appearing to know any words in English exxept for 'no problem'!

Sent from my glorious e71 which is most definitely not an iPhone!

1 comment:

  1. Loving the stuff bro, unfortunately your glorious e71 which is most definitely not an iPhone definitely does not have selpl cehhkeci