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The Rat who is made of Stainless Steel

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BB Piano
I don't remember where I left off, and the Internet connection here is sssssssllllllllllloooooooowwwwww (and I'm not near one of the hotspots) so I can't check at the moment. I'll probably keep it brief anyway, as I'm here on holiday after all, but I want to diary it at least.

I finished off my packing on Saturday morning, and Lu did amazing things by finding more space in the case I was already having to sit on to close - not ideal seeing as my DSLR was in there. Hopefully coming back it will be a bit easier, as there shouldn't be a hundredweight of nappies and a week's worth of baby food (well, less than a week's worth, as we had to reduce it for space).

We headed off to the airport around 2pm, and parked at APH Gatwick - the transfer bus driver was amazingly courteous, so kudos to them. He even got us a luggage trolley, which was a God send when juggling suitcases, toddler, and hand luggage. It was a short queue for check-in, then a quick rush around Gatwick airport. I wanted to get some Hugo Boss stick deodorants, as that's the one toiletry luxury I afford myself... well, that I'm interested in. The choices weren't great, as Boss seem to have retired their older but better smelling deodorants. Then we bought a few other bits 'n' bobs, including a case for the PowerShot - it was a choice between an expensive and not great Canon leather case, or a Crumpler case (and a few others). I preferred the latter.

We boarded around 6pm, and it was only a short wait before we took off. The flight was fairly uneventful, although Amélie didn't sleep much, and woke up towards the end in a bit of a grump. We must have arrived around 1am local Turkish time (BST + 2 hours). You have to pay £10 each for a Visa to enter Turkey, which seems slightly petty, and then it was an average wait before our bags turned up. The reps were all outside in a special area in the car park, and were a bit disorganised it seemed. Weirdly we had a private taxi transfer (why were we the only people headed to our hotel?), so we headed over to a dark area of the car park and found our taxi, which was more of a minibus. The driver offered us cooled water, which was much appreciated, and we headed off.

The transfer felt long, and Lu (and Amélie) were shattered. I stayed awake for the whole journey, around 2 hours, but couldn't see much of anything in the Turkish night. We arrived at the hotel, and Lu felt we ought to tip the driver, but she didn't have anything smaller than £10 (20 Lira). We tipped him anyway, and he looked a bit put out. I'm not sure if we made some cultural faux pas? C'est la vie. We then checked in at the hotel, with a receptionist we struggled to understand, and went to our room. We were probably settled and ready to sleep around 4am.

We finally surfaced around 10am, and took advantage of the hotel's "late breakfast", which basically meant a super limited choice. From there we went for a walk along the sea front. Ichmeler (where we're staying) is a curious place. It's a small town set in a natural gorge, so there are beautiful hills covered in trees on both side. The development in the gorge is the unusual bit, as it seems to have been very well managed, or they were very lucky. It's not some tropical paradise, but little if anything seems to be more than 2 stories, and the beach has a large pedestrianised path that apparently runs all the way to Marmaris (9km away). Our hotel is on the beachfront, and has its own private beach, but then so do all the other hotels on the beachfront. The beachfront also has a number of restaurants, which sell both Turkish and British food. I hate British-ised resorts with a passion, and over developed resorts, but this felt like about as good a balance as you can strike. Also everything here feels really clean and well looked after, again unlike a lot of half finished stereotypical Spanish resorts, and similar.

We then had a late lunch, around 2-3pm, at one of the beachfront restaurants, and then headed back to the room to crash. Lu went for a swim late afternoon while Amélie and I slept on, then Lu came back for a sleep and I went downstairs with the laptop, to discover the hotel Internet is sssssssllllllllllloooooooowwwwww (around 12 kB/s). We couldn't wake Amélie easily, so debated whether to have a dinner in relay. I picked her up out of the cot though, and she woke up. So we had a semi-late dinner, and another walk along the beachfront (which Amélie toddled most of, then fell on her face and grazed her cheekbone. This added to two grazed knees from earlier, and a finger that she managed to cut on some broken glass she found).

Then it was back to the room where we crashed again. Amélie struggled to get to sleep, but she did after an hour or two.

We surfaced around 8am this morning, and got to breakfast around 9:30am. We spent the remainder of the morning around the pool, then went to another beachfront restaurant for lunch. Now Lu and Amélie are napping, but I'm too awake for that. It was 38C on the beach, which feels lovely.

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searching online suggests tipping is normal, and rates seem about the same as here, around the 10% mark. He should count himself lucky, I wouldn't have tipped him ;0)

Enjoy yourself!

Heh, I blame it on traveller fatigue! :-)

Very much enjoying here :-)

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