There is a word I keep hearing a lot: yok. It means “no” in Turkish.
Excuse me, is there a way around that tunnel? Yok.
Do you have soup on the menu? Yok.
Is there a place to sleep around here? Yok.
I am still thinking of this word while I am setting up my tent. Everything is wet.
It’s the wetness of the Black Sea. As soon as the sun went down and the temperatures started dropping, the moisture that had been floating around in the air decided to descend upon everything. I was still on a highway around a peninsula and I could feel the handle bars of the Caboose get wet. There weren’t that many buildings around, mostly it was just vegetation on both sides of the road.
At some point I stopped at a roadside restaurant. It had a large area outside where people could sit. There were some pavilions, and there was a little shop. No patrons anywhere, just a few people who seemed to work there.
I asked a lady if she had any idea where I could sleep. She nodded and went to fetch her manager. The manager was a short young man who seemed very bored. He listened to what I had to say and replied with yok. No sleeping, not here.
Anywhere close by? Yok.
Maybe in a park that I had located on the map? Yok.
I was wondering if there was some kind of misunderstanding, so I typed a question into my translation app and showed it to him.
He didn’t even look at it. Instead he made a gesture as if to swat away a fly. I was the fly.
I stood there for a moment. Then I did what I always do: I shook the dust off my feet and I continued on my way. It took about a half hour to get to the park on the map, which turned out to be a campground.
And so here I am, and everything is wet.