Day 11 (Thu, Sep 25): Cruising / Kusadasi / Ephesus excursion
We spent the morning at leisure on the way to Kusadasi. Had breakfast, then spent the rest of the morning on the Lido deck. We met a couple from Las Vegas named John & Eileen Swete. Had buffet lunch at the Lido Bar with Ross and Robin.
When we got to Ephesus there was some disorganization at the gate. Everyone from the ship descended en masse and had to buy tickets for their cameras. We each ended up with six pieces of paper. Inflation is everywhere. Ephesus was a very handsome place, once among the richest cities in the Roman Empire, capital of the Province of Asia. There is extensive excavation still going on there. Our guide was a Turk named "Ned" who had spent some time in Texas (air force training). Our bus driver was named Ali; acording to Ned, Ali was "the hero wrestler in all these parts" 20 years earlier. On the way back the bus stopped at the roadside and several of us had our pictures taken near a pair of camels.
Ephesus, being an important seaport in the ancient world, had a lower city on the waterfront and an upper city for the citizenry. New arrivals were quarantined below; for two weeks they weren't permitted through the Market Gate adjoining the Library of Celsus.
We had a get-together with the tour group this evening. During that I played the piano but only managed a few numbers before the ship's band showed up and drowned me out. After dinner we went to the Lido Deck and sat outside and had a beer. Were joined by Valerie Bailey. The rest of the tour group showed up for the "Festive evening at sea: 1001 Nights Dinner and The Masquerade Ball." We didn't participate. In fact, we found ourselves preferring the company of individuals from our group to the "entertainment" provided by the cruise company. I don't think we fit the mold of "American tourist" very well. Too much emphasis on shopping and a making a fool of yourself (or watching others do that). Give us a drink of Metaxa and conversation with Christina anytime. During the evening, about 8:30, we sailed from Turkey, heading for Rhodes.
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