31km to the airport
And 1300km in a plane (I can’t count those for my total sadly!)
Today I raced from the centre of Ankara to the airport. I had left it a little late and only allowed an hour to do 31km. with the traffic, it took an hour and a half. My friend Doğa was with me but I was racing so fast he couldn’t keep up and gave up. If I had waited I would have missed my flight. I am soooooo grateful to him, Nihat, Halil and all the guys who looked after me at Cafe Delmundo. And Doğa will cycle to India so I will be following him and hope to see him and the others again.
Turkish Airlines had said there was no problem with the bike and I had asked if there was a service so i could pack it. They said yes but when i got to the airport there wasn’t. So I had to rush to tale it apart so that one of those booths could wrap it in that sticky secure wrap. The woman behind the check-in desk was so worried I would miss my flight, she ran around the airport looking for me! (Amazing. Turkish people just love to help you…. ). As Silver went down the conveyor I had no time for any prayers but I just hoped for the best.
I ran to the gate. It was a mad dash but I was on a plane with just minutes to spare thinking, well that was exciting!
The flight to Istanbul took an hour. And there was just 2 hours to my next flight, and then 2 hours from rainy Istanbul to warm Cairo.
I was in Africa! Another continent. Plus very important considering I am raising money for African causes.
Getting the visa in Cairo airport was ridiculously easy and just 15 dollars (or 105 Egyptian pounds.
Putting Silver back together was harder but after a lot of sweating and a lot of interest from the airport workers, she was ready to go. It was quite late and taking a taxi this time was the sensible option.
And I am now at a hostel with a new cycling friend Alex. He lost a few parts in transit so we will go looking for a bike shop tomorrow.
It does not feel tense here at all. We ate for £5 (about 0.5 euros) and sat and drank tea and smoked a Shisha. And the people seem friendly so I think it’s going to be great.