This post is about a 16km walk from Kocaali to Karasu. I hang out with a baker, then I fail to get a Covid vaccine booster shot.
Another morning, another empty place. I stepped out of the door and pulled the Caboose onto the street. I moved west and then northwest without talking to anyone, without enjoying it, without appreciating the experience. I just dragged my feet (especially my right one), hating everything and everyone.
the old oven
Then a guy waved me into his shop. The shop was a bakery, and the guy’s name was Samet. He offered me some tea and some simit, and we sat down to talk. I felt better. In fact I felt good.
Samet showed me the oven that his grandpa had built in 1970. It ran on burning wood. When I noticed that it was warm without there being any bread in it, I asked if it was always on, and Samet said yes and smiled. Then he sighed. All that wood needed to run the oven was expensive.
Samet was a man who smiled and sighed a lot. He smiled, because that was his nature. And he sighed, because the last one or two years had been difficult. The Turkish economy was tanking, and everything was getting more expensive. But how did you raise the price on something as fundamental as bread?
I went straight toward the local hospital after this. My Covid vaccination had been in June, and I wanted to get a booster shot. But before I got there, I noticed a Turkmen restaurant and decided to stop for lunch. I ordered spinach mantı with yoghurt sauce, something I had never had the chance to try during my walk through Turkmenistan. And it was excellent.
When I arrived at the hospital the nurses told me that I could not get vaccinated. They were very friendly about it, and they even called their superiors to make sure. But in the end there really was no way to get the shot without a Turkish ID number.
I shrugged and walked along the beach promenade for a while. It was getting dark, and there was a light drizzle in the air. Then it started raining.
Of course, I thought to myself, of fucking course.
Villas in Kocaali:
Samet in his bakery:
Samet the baker:
The road to walk from Kocaali to Karasu:
A river near Karasu:
Turkmen Mantı House in Karasu:
Turkmen spinach mantı with yoghurt:
Selfie at Karasu Hospital:
Rain clouds descending upon Karasu:
Rain in the enpty part of Karasu: