Battir village is looking quite beautiful from beneath. This village is next to one of the branches of Hicaz Reilway which is in Sam area. I am cycling between ridgeway of the village and railway. Other side of the road there is Israil. Railway is protected by wire mesh too. I need to go other side. Sultan said ” There is a brigde after almos 2 kms, you can cycling under it.”. There are olive trees in everywhere. I wonder who is taking care of these olive threes or anyone is picking. This is an unsealed road, easy to cycling for now. Almost 2 kms later I reached the brigde which is Sultan mantioned. Normally a car can pass under the bridge but a large rock is closed the passageway so even I can’t pass by bike. I have to take the bags out than I have to pass with bike first and after pass with bags. Off. Whatever, nothing to do. After all if I pass the other side I have visa. Nothing is illegal. After little bit fight I passed the other side. Naturally there is nobody but obviously anyone or any vehicle hasn’t pass this road for a long time.
After a while the road is destroyed and I enter stream bed. Fuck! Where will I go? I am looking at Gps but can’t see this roas, of course. I pick up phone and looking at Google Maps. The area is large, I am unsure about where I am going. Nothing is seen by Google Maps. Everywhere is covered by trees. Then I take the downhill way. Stream current had taken this way in past. Of course it is hard to cycling on stony ground. Also it is unnecesaary to force bicycle chain. I run out chain. Push dude, push oooffff 🙂
After a while pushing bike I found a path on my left side and I strat to cycling. Than the path has became fine. But this time ups and downs have started on the way. So be it, it is just fine.
After 2 kms I found a path which is blocked by woods and then I come to the area which is Sultan mantioned. When I am going to that area a group of people come from opposite way. They suprised when they see me. Why? Because I came from West Seria which is close 🙂
– Is this road keep going until Tel Aviv?
– Yes. Where are you going?
– I come from West Seria, there is a beautiful village 4 kms away. I think you have to go there. There are beautiful Roma gardens and walking paths, they will welcome you.
– Going that way? Scary idea?
Palestinians said same thing on the other side. These people gave me some water and I keep going. The roads are better then the other side. There ara signes at least, I know where I have to go. I went 2 kms more, at this time I come across a single man who is walking. We talked little.
He run out water and I gave some of mine which has given to me. After a short cycling I come across a small group. They make sport in an empty area. Men and women have very athletic shape. Aaa, I think they are soldires. I stoped beside them and watched for a while. The guy who command them was looking at me. It is normal, there is a Turkish flag behind my bike. I get off my bike, eating banana, drinking water. Meanwhile one of the Hicaz Reilway trains came. It stoped right in front of us. Pasingers and I staring each other. They looking at me like who the hell is he? So solders and I didn’t speak each other.
Than I came a road which is only for 4×4 according to sign. While I was cycling up and down on the road I speed up little bit more. The front wheel of the bike slipped ( it had never been like that, the wheel is gone) when I was not expecting. The bike was dragged down the road a bit. But the damage was little because bags protected the bike. I dodge a bullet. Meanwhile chest camera kit had attached, I must be recorded this fall too hehehehe. I get up and keep cycling. Just I was thinking cycling downhill is very fun suddenly I felt pain near my chest. I thought some trash which left over me from my fall and it caused this pain. But what ever it was it is burning now. I tried to take it off, fuck, there was an insect on me. It was going down. It was under the camera, ahhh, it bite me again. Son of a b… It was burning when it bite. It bite me four times more when I was trying to get it off and I did. I stoped. I caught it under my clothes and killed it by squeezing. What is it? Aaaaaaaa it is a scorpion. Good, I thought something worse (but sure if someone recorded my face it was like ” Now I’m fucked up.”). And this was missing. First let’s taki this S.O.S. kit off. I reaslied that I am about to faint, at least I push that button before lose my consciousness. Second I looked at gps. Closest village is 8 kms far away. Nice. Where is my camera? Hah right here.
– Scorpion sting me, I don’t know what is going to happen. But I must g oto the village and ask someone.
I did the fastest off-road driving in that 8 kms area of my life. Although all this actions and havey luggage the bicycle frame didn’t broke, I think it will never more. To tell the truth I got excited because I know what happens to a man after black scorpion sting: )One of my friends had run to his house becaouse he had been stung by black scorpion. 5-10 minutes later I saw him again on the way of hospital and his had was like a balloon. How fast can I go by bike in the middle of this fucking forest? I don’t have any antivenom because scorpions are different for each region.
When I came to the village I found a petrol station and told what happened. They called a medical crew. I told what happened again, they examined. They tols that scorpion stings are normal where I was : ) There is so many scorpions in the area. They asked the colour. I said black. Do you have allergy? No. they gave me an anticor. I learn that black scorpions can kill a man according to their size. Maybe a small one stung me, who knows? But the place which it stung me was like stone. I camped out somewhere near the petrol station. Just in case if something will happen latter in the day I am able to ask for help.
Also the case of going to Tel Aviv through forest is close. I will take the normal bike way. Oh yes, when the time when I started cycling I met with bike ways. The next day the stung place was still like stone and I had realy bad rash. Almost I was going to take my skin off by rashing. Belive me I was barely cycling. The itching was decreasing when my pulse rate was increasing.Cycling is cure all. Let’s cycling : )
I saw lots of cyclist (I mean racers and pedestrains) on the road when I was going to Tel Aviv in the morning. These cyclists were doing serious performance with groups or with friends. Suddenly two women passed me. Let’s go Gürkan, catch their wind. They looked back and smiled, I smiled back and said “Keep going on, nice tempo.”. Let’s be clear it was nice 1 hour cycling during looking at hot bodies. Momentarily my concentration was broke and looked at the map. Upps, I have passed Tel Aviv 12 kms. Hahahaha. If you attached to strangers like that, anything can happens. Let’s go back.
I came Tel Aviv. I entered the old city side which is called Hayfa. Awesom place. Just I came across Sunday 10.00am, the streets are full. It is just like breakfast at Hisar, İstanbul. Restaurants have breakfast places. Antique and craft shops are lined the street. There is a bazaar and everywhere is so clean. It is unbelievable. I am so close to Arabic territory but the difference is very clear. There are wastebins everywhere. What can I say dude? I am going to shore. The view is awesome, the sea and beach are very clean. Sands are shining and say “Come to me, come to me and swim.”. It is november and the weather is very nice.
I am going to our ambassy by taking coast way. Yes, we have an ambassy in Israel. But we don’t ourselves be represented at the level of ambassador after the Blue Marmara case. In response all consular affairs are same. So the Republic of Turkey is a country that recognizes Israel and we have a mutual visa applications. So yes, you’re a state like all other states of the world we say.
The beach has return cycling path. I have been in lost of Mediterranean countries Turkey, Italy, France, Spain, Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia. I’ve never seen such a bike path in any Mediterranean country. Also you can’t see such a landscape on bike paths in other countries. You pass people groups who are cycling, doing sports, playing tennis, playing volleyball or sitting. Waow. They made marvelous path. Next days I realised the path is more than 50 kms. I pedaled on all.
Turkish police attaches at our embassy door have heard from me in the door. Hasan, Kazım and Yusuf. Thanks to them, while I was there they brought dinner at home.
They invited me to their home. I met Yusuf’s little daughter Beyaz when I went this house. Subject came to the health sector. “Gürkan we had been in hospitals in Turkey and here. There is huge difference about treatment between Turkey and here. They are good.” they said. I think it is normal. I’ve seen so many people pushing prams at streets latest in Bulgaria. There were groups of people who were jogging with prams when I went to the beach for jogging in the morning. Everywhere baby. (Meanwhile, Turkish mall of diapers on the market. I noticed.) For obvious reasons th country needs more population, that’s why young genaration is continuosly pragnent. Naturally these children will be in good care. I have no experience in baby or child care. I have nothing to say. But I am crazy about them : ) God gives patience to families.
Another issue that caught my attention, everyone is making waves surfing. Yes, wave surfing. In Turkey, in Italy, in France, in Spain there are Mediterranean sea. Did you ever see there? No I did not see. But here they do wave surfing. even one day, I came across a hill that overlooks the beach. At least fifty people at sea, I yelled “There is no wave dude. Are you crazy.” The men are staying on top of that surf board 4 to 6 seconds, and then drop off. Because the wave ends. My friend here is Mediterranean, not the ocean. The strength and form of waves are certain. Are they doing 6 seconds, they’re doing. What I understood of it. (Events will become clearer in the following section.)
When you look at the whole country, the Jews had their own system of Sharia. As in Saudi Arabia. They called something else instead. For example, one day I’m going to enter the embassy. “Can you open the door?”, I asked officer who was next to the door. He said it will be opened inside. You are just there, open it dude. What would you mean it will be opened inside. Than Yusuf saw me and opened the door. I asked why he didn’t open the door me and he said that today is their religious day, they don’t touch anything contains electricity. Haaaaaaaaaaaaaaa. For instance the man is sitting on top of the skyscraper, how does he go to home or out, where is he pressed? At that time, elevators are working automatic, stop on each floor. They found the solution to everything you can think of. People are trying to find place for astringency society in business sector. These people take money from the state just read book and pray, other people are very uncomfortable about this. A young Jewish friend “men think they save the country by praying and therefore believe that they deserve the money given to them by the state.” he said. Naturally, people are angry that the taxes which they pay to be spent like this. Also earlier this religious socity hadn’t taken into military service. “We have a man of religion, how we work in the military?” they had thought. In 2014 the state has began recruiting them.
One day I went out to dinner with our trade attaché at the embassy, we talked. Trade attaches in the countries go and establish ties with Turkish businessmen. They know what is exported or inported between Turkey and those countries, which Turkish companies are working in those counties and they know many more details. I was talking about Turkish products in markets which I saw in West Seria and in this ragion. It seems our export is very good in this country. The issue that I wonder is how do Turkish products come to West Seria? The answer is quite surprizing.
– Gürkan, the number of products which we export are certain in this country. But some of the products which are sold here are not sent directly to here. They are product of help.
– What are these help products doing in the market?
– The help products from Turkey are delivered to UN. After unknown. They are sold through tunnels from Gaza to Israel and West Seria market. You can find until Lebanon border. Normally, these products mustn’ be sold in the domestic market. They are not on our export list.
– How can those tunnels be so big? How do all these products pass?
– So the trucks can pass.
– Hımmm.. Gaze needs money, so they keep fighting someway for selling these products.
– Yes, exactly.
When I was pedaling there they were talking about Muslim states hace come together and give support by sending cement, sand, iron and other materials for the reconstruction of Gaza in Egypt. If this support is used in the construction of the city still a question mark. I can not go to Gaza by bike so all hypothetical comment, there is a one-sided information at the moment. I need to visite that side too. But as I said before; Palestinians do not want me to go there. I’m surprised it too.
In addition, in my conversation with our trade attaché, I affirmed once again that Israel is the head country which we trade.
In another day I met with our military attache and getting information about the area. “Gürkan there is a place in North. Young generation of Turks need to know this story. Mybe someone wrote about it about yours will be different. I can’t give the exact name of the area but you will find there. I am sure about it.” Hmm, I was very surprised when I listened to the commander. “No problem, I will go there.” I said.
I had the opportunity to participate in the October 29 reception when I was in the Tel Aviv. In this reception I met the President of the Association of Turk Jews Israel, days later I did an interview with him about Turks, Jews, Muslims, and Turkey. One day I’ll find a place to write, what we talked in this interview. At the same night I met with the heads of Circassian community. When I said I went to the north of the country, “Let us know. We wanna guest you.” they said.
There are a clock tower of the Ottoman Empire and a house where the governor Jamal Pasha had lived in TelAviv ‘s Ottoman period. The house has been restored by Republic of Turkey. Also it has been hired for 50 years. And brought into a museum. I had the opportunity to visit this museum. The date on which the museum will be opened our realitonshüp with Israel was bad. So we haven’t opened the museum as a punishment.
We have done the restoration. Everything in inside which is described and illustrated of the Ottoman Empire history. But we haven’t opened this museum. Almost every day tour operators are beginning their tour in front of the museum, to show the environment to tourists. That day we entered the museum even tour operators’ eyes are on us “Wondering if they open?”
After few days in Tel Aviv, I’m on the road again.
New villas and skyscrapers continue to built along the coast. But they finished the bike path first. It got my attention to bicycle parking area in front of the construction sites. I’ve seen the same thing in the Nordic countries. They finish the bike path to the construction sites first. So that workers who are sitting nearby can use the bikes.
One day while I was cycling, weather turned bad. Aha going to rain. I wish someone invite me to his home and show me Israeli hospitality. Then the rain started at a time. Aboooo coming down pretty fast. I went under a tree now, I’m gonna take my raincoat Or I’ll wet my pants up in the rain. I put on my raincoat and a car passed me than stopped then came back. After standing in front of me for a while the window was opened.
– My home just there. You can stay at my house if you want. There is a hot soup.
I looked, smiled and said thank you. : )
This frined from Israil is called Marion. He is a musician. He make a studio part of his house. he told me that generally he earns money from birthday paties, invitations. Sometimes he takes to the stage in rock bars. During a conservation he said “Sportsman/woman and musicians don’t have any value in this country.”. Generally these people from both sides leave the country to accomplish something. If someone becomes successful, goverment gives hand to him/her. I had heard similar stories earlier in the countries which have borders the Mediterranean.
– Let me be clear Gürkan I had some hesitations about inviting you at home when I first saw you.
– I recognized late the Turkes flag which is behind you bike. Israel is not really loved in your country.
– Have you ever been in Turkey?
– So why have you invited me at your home?
– After my military duty I had traveled the world with my backpack too. I have been in lots of countries. I know the problems which a pasenger has, moreover you are doing it with bike. Your thoughts and experiences are different. When you are on the road your thoughts and point of view have changed, I know that. I invite you to think this way.
– Thank you Marion, you think right. : )
Later we were 5 people at home, Marion’s friends came. Carmel, Kran, Adam. Someone said a word during the conversation “Gurkan we want to end this war. Believe me, we do not know who chooses the current Israeli government, but I can say that as 38 years old man no one came to a head who I voted for.”. Meanwhile, Marion was asked if I had gone to Gaza. No, I said.
– You’re a traveler, how come you didn’t go there. You have to go and see !!
Palestinians say go there, Israelis say don’t. I don’t understand shit of it. Need special permission to enter Gaza. So you can’t go there by waving you arms. CAn I get this permission? I talked about this issue with the Ambassador, they said ” You’ll probably get documents but you can’t go there. My Israel visa is for a month and I also spend time with pedaling in both regions until now. I’ll go up first. When I arrived in the region for the second time (this will be the year after), I’ll toure the down side.(I learned the reason for the persistently ask me to go there. I prefer to go see there and write by myself.) That night Marion had invited me to his house, but becaouse of he had work to do and I don’t want to be alone at his home so I went to KARMEN’s home to stay. Karmen, exquisite art teacher in a school in the region. Expertise sculpture. He made me a very nice evening meal. Some says that some people put their spirit into the foos which they cook; Karmen is one of these people. The food was fantastic. The conversation was fun. I’m glad to recognize him.
The next day the rain stopped and I had to keep moving from where I stayed. I saw an incredible number of agricultural land on the way. Palestinians working in the agricultural lands. But the owner of the lands are Jews. All lands are belong to a foundation in Israel. So nobody has a piece of land. Everything belongs to state of Israel. I am a person who red Falih Rifki Atay’s “Zeytindagi ” novel this page comes immediately to my mind:
“I traveled to Palestine from Jerusalem to Jaffa several times. New town villages of Palestine is Jewish monuments. This is not new, this is a new Palestine. The Village headman is a British Jew who is wearing tuxedos in the evening. Red-cheeked German Jewish girls at the top of horse cars returns to the village from vineyard by singing. Arab Muslims are required services for these people. Grapes are squeezed by these Arab servants. Wine is drank by Jews. Former Arab village in Palestine is a land masses. The gardens were ruined, people naked eyes are diseased. Towns in Jewish Palestine are with orange scents, surrounded by sycamores. In February, the women who have open the chest and neck are waiting the end of war in otel lounges where bouquets of roses with sharp smell and mature oranges are decorated.”
100 years have passed. The details which Falih Rifki Atay told continue same today.
I got in Haifa late at night. One of my followers Erdem Korkmaz’s friend Inbal was following me for a long time. When she realise that I was in Haifa, she asked me to stay with him. But I didn’t have the power to move so I set up my tent in an area where close to the mountains outside the city.
Because of I set up my tent into woodes and a bit far from the city wild dogs began to howl. I realised that they were not dogs when just saying wow so many doys are here I looked at them carefully. Well, I unload my bike I set up a tent together I can’t reunite again even if they were coyotes. Their numbers was pretty much and they were trying to protect their area. There’s nothing to do, I began to talk with them.
– Dear Friends, I’ll stay here for one night only then I’ll go. Please don’t make any noice after entering the tent I’ll sleep I am very tired.
I enter the tent and slept. Coyotes also have stopped shouting. So the animals are right too, a stranger entered their land.
I went the house which Inbal invited me early in the morning. Haifa has been fairly built on an elevated site. I go on the road seemed very roundabout from GPS, I said I went there to find a shortcut. There was a forest road coming into town just to my left. Since then, I said, “……………………… using a shortcut.”. First, the dog attacked. 🙂 They ooked very wild, I got off the bike so I attacked them. After a long period climbed 18%. I looked back tourists come on foot from below. Here’s a historical place? After a while, the road became impossible to go by bike. I’m climbed 18% over the place will I go down? Of course no. I remove all bags from the bike and carried them one by one up to 200 meters above where I am going to push my bike. Then I gather them again. When I was moving on my way through the trees there was a man who was praying. I thought I’ll keep moving in front of him when he’ll finish praying. Meanwhile, the tourists came up to the area where I stand. This has been holy water from cistern which I stand next. People come to wash their hands and faces and drink water. I began to watch people when sit straight ahead. I took an apple. There are a group of traveler, me and praying man in the woods. The man’s prayer ended and he came to me.
– I think you would go up, you stopped when saw me.
– Yes, I waited for you to finish your prayer, I did not pass in front of you in tight spaces. I do not know exactly your religious rules. Also I have no hurry.
– You can’t get your bike up from this point. The road is very steep, slippery ground due to the humidity. But today I had come here for you. We’re push the bike togother.
I like the point of view. We removed the bike by pushing to top of the hill it was pretty hard but we managed. I thanked him. Just I moved to leave;
– Hey, take that 100 shekels.
– No, thank you I don’t need.
– You are a passenger and guest. I’ll be sad if you don’t take it.
Even it doesn’t come to my mind that this man give me so much money as 100 shekels. I even wonder if I’ll give money to him. I am angry with myself, I had seen so many people to visit the countries still I have prejudices! I am still amazed at opposite events. It’s a good experience. Even after he tald me that he wanna host me, but I promised my friend.
After this point, Inbal’s home was quite close. I had already been to his house in a few minutes. The first time I meet with her. She was quite friendly and sincere, and she was taking lessons to speak Turkish. (Now we speak each other in Turkish on facebook.He even read my article now all in Turkish.) Why Turkish did I ask? She said that she loved both our country and our people. She has phd student and completed 4 universities. Her husband works in a private company in Haifa.
They live in a modest apartment. Meanwhile rents are flown sizes in Israel. If you gonna buy a house, buy the higher-end price. Locals or foreigners everybody complain about property prices. 2 days I’m a guest in their home. During this time, she is taking me to Baha’i Gardens. It is called Bahai gardens in this area but actually considered to be the center of this religion. A religion with more than 10 million believers and followers of this religion able to find in every country in the world. Racism and classism to anyone who was defending the citizens of the world, and he did not help the believer can say that the Iranian religious center. I can say that Iran bassed religion which has no racism and classism, advocating that everyone is a citizen of the world and has helping people. So, why the center is in Israel now? The representatives of the religion exiled to this region in Ottoman Period, they have also buried here, in the city of Akko.
When I entered the garden first they asked where am I from. I told I’m Turk. They gave me Turkish brochure to my hand. First time someone in somewhere gave me a Turkish brochure while I am visiting abroad.
Then we join a group and someone began to give information about the garden. For example, employees of the gardens who are pruning and watering them are people of Baha’i religious but people who make tourist trips are Jews. Their assemblies is here and they meet once a year. The entrance to the garden is also free, they do not get paid for being a religious center. They also don’t want to make a donation. At least they not asked me that time! I have seen places which take 300 shekels in Jerusalem
A bank, Arab Israel Bank caught my attention while I was in the city tours. Probably it is a bank which is using by Arabs in the country. The one of branchs was in Haifei, it was quite large. I was able to use public transport when visiting the city. There is ‘Fenikü’ such as the one we had in Taksim, but with a twist. 🙂
We had a night out around the city and I pulled out a my camera to take a photo during rain. Exactly in that moment a lightning came out, such a landscape emerged.
I wanted to tell the military system of the country during our conversation with Inbal. After 17 years in the country they are sent to all the young girls and boys, and they did 3 years of military troops. In the and of military duty $ 10,000 – $ 15,000 given to young people. Young people travele the world for the next year with this money. Then they go to university when they return to the country. Age 21. Goverment provides ease in rent for their home because of going to military; pay all or a certain portion. Education is free. They benefit from free health care industry. When I asked where they go on vacation Thailand, Morocco, South America .. I understand now why these guys are doing wave surfing in Tel Aviv. If you learn to stand up in these small waves, so that if you have success, you do pretty good waves for surfing in the ocean waves. Currently which countier are the world’s largest software giants? Japan, South Korea and Israel. 90% of the population of all three countries are travel all around the world, what a chance. Betwee travel somewhere new and creation have a great bond. Turkey’s population is 80 million, departing from the country was 8 million of Turkish citizens in 2014. 2 million of citizens went to Georgia, 1 million to Bulgaria, half a million to Greece, after sorting Germany, Italy, Saudi Arabia. Yes Inbal and her husband introduced me around the city, they were told their thoughts between cultures and peoples. It was nice to be guest in here too.
I continued early in the morning. I started to go to the Jordanian border this time off from the coastline. It began rolling hills and green fields. The north of the country is rather green than the south. I was off the main road and went to secondary roads. It entered the alleyway by the larger and more spacious Kiputz and I began to see. Now what are these Kiputlz? A kind of colonialism system. Just Jews live in. They don’t allow Arabs to enter. The inside order is different. Each Kiputz has a factory to worh or a production to produce for income. The income from factories which come from after selling insde markets or out side markets is shared equally between all people. Evrey family keeps watch for main door. The rents of houses which are inside are cheaper then houses in out. These areas had been used for castle or defensive walls in 1947. Kiputz villages and Arab villages are side by side. I come across afternoon pray in an Arab village, I entered the mosque and I prayed with community than I went out. When they learned that I am Turk, everyone invited me to their houses. But I already promised someone to stay in Circassian village for that night. I met a teacher when I was there and asked some questions :
– I have a few questions that I was wondering about. I would like you to know if you’re available.
– Of course I’ll be happy to answer.
– I’ve noticed that in Arab villages in the land of Israel, the sound of the call to prayer come out from the mosques. Is it forbidden? Or not?
– No, of course not. Everyone pray and go to mosque.
– There is a school in next to us. Is this a public school?
– Yes, it is the Arab primary school of the Israeli state.
– Which language do you study?
– What, you have been teaching in the native language? What about Hebrew?
– We give training in their native language. Hebrew is the secondary language education. After they learn English.
– This application is available in all Arab schools in Israel?
Frankly I have not seen such an education system in areas where have more ethnicity in many counties in Europe. Also there wasn’t any state policy about education in ethnic language when I left Turkey, I do not know it is there at the moment. I thanked my frien and I’d be on my way but a group of young people stopped a car 100 meters away and bagan to beat a man who is sitting in the driver’s seat.Young Arabs were fighting eachothers, they were cursing. There was an Israel police 100 meters away he was just watching them. He didn’t even intervene. Some Arabs next to me, say that it is a girl fight. Just I felt pity for him, he step on the gas and went. I young man from next village loved a young girl from this village blah blah blah. People have posted a satellite to Mars, they still fight for girls.I learned that the 4 different Arab parties in the Israeli parliament. Why are they 4 instead of 1? They don’t agree.
The family which is going to guest me to night is sitting at the head-Kaman village. The specialty of the village is one of the two Circassian villages in Israel. The other village’s name is Rehanna. Two villages have total of 4,000 Circassians live. Circassians have been settled in this region under the umbrella of the Ottoman Empire. One of the interesting characteristics of the Circassian is they memorize lands which they went as their homeland. For example, the protectors of the King of Jordan are Circassians. Or businessmen who are in good positions are Circassians in the country. I called Sinan when I came to the village, he came and got me to home from entrance of the village. His wife is Silvia and his doughters are Şirin and Neris. Samething just happened here; I wanted to stay one night and I would go but I stayed 5 days. Also we made harvest olive of the season together. That’s why I stayed longer.
I had time, I could stay longer and I like the family very much. There was same old feelings from first day to last day. You’d think that we met 15 years ago, not 5 days ago and I just come to visit them. Foods, conversations, new experiences, new knowledges, everything was so nice and friendly.
Everyone who lives in Kafar – Kama village is Muslim or Circassian. Silvia is a teacher in the village school. Yes, yes same again. The education is in native language in Circassian schools too. I mean fisrt language is Circassian and secondary languages are Hebrew and English. I made a presentation in this school, also I attended in a folklore class one night. Neris is student in this school and school has all facilities. The number of teachers and students are enough.
Şirin is in highschool, she goes to Muslim and Juw mixed school which is in down town because there is no highschool in her village. One day I went her school and made a presentation in her school too. Teachers and students who listened to the presentation were very surprised and asked me lots of question. Even the theacher said about me ” He is one of the supermans in our time” and all class applauded me. Sinan gave me detailed tour in Şirin’s school. There was a agricultural land in the school. The school produced their own milk and cheese to make income for school. Also students get farming lessons on the land. Sheep, chickens, cows, palm trees. Everything is perfect and very clean. I think, such a system in a highschool is a big success. I saw some similar system in Netherlands Utrecht. The univercity had own agricultural land and veterinary students got practical courses.
I directly came to here from Haife during my journy. We went to Akka as a family in one of the days which I spent there. The castle walls are incredible on the shore. When I was the castle “It is impossible, trying to surround the castle from the sea.” I said. So Napoleon had defeated started the war against Jezzar from the beginning, it was eventually defeated. Napoleon said “I could take the whole eastern if I wasn’t been stop at this point.” and added between notes. Ottoman buildings in the city are still there even being restored. Already standing like fortress. You think opening ribbon made yesterday. 🙂 In particular, the major historical sites, artifacts that may be of touristic value are restored Israel.
So tourism revenue requirement. Hejaz Railway Museum where there is, using the Hejaz Railways, it was never came to my mind that I will acrosse with a country which is protecting or restoring the many works of the Ottoman Empire. Even the Ottoman armada which is in the market area was incredible. I got permission from the owner of apartment which is opposite it to look at it closely and take a photo from the balcony of the building.
Sinan took me to an other area in Kadar – Kama village. Mimar Sinan’s when he had been is apprenticeship time worked in the construction of the palace where we are going. I do not know how much is true. The sign was made in 1993, perhaps the most recent excavations were done that date. I asked him why not been restored. “It needs financial strength Gürkan we don’t have that power.” he said.
According to Sinan, the historical monuments are located Circassians propertyies. I said something like this before. The land of Israel belongs to a foundation, it is not such a situation inherited from father to son or daughter to leave. But these lands, these two Circassian villages, belong to Circassians. And they have deeds dating back to the Ottoman Empire. So they can sell or they can buy heritage. “Why don’t the Israelis come?” I asked, after all it is Israel. Well, why would they come after we don’t want to sell? I think Jews don’t come and live in this area where especially Muslims already lived. There are all Jew villages around the Circassian villages.
I do not know how this 5 days pass. Silvia was feeding me with the most beautiful Circassian food for 5 days. Sinan has prepared an tahini molasses before I go. Also he gave a smoked Circassian cheese on top. And when the time came separation,I waved my hand sad and quietly and looked back jut once. I flew away in this slot too. We still chat this family we never break our touch as many families I have met on my journey.
Now it is time to find that place in Tel Aviv which is mantioned by military attache. I wonder where is this place, it would be the back side of Lake Galilee. Meanwhile, I went down again 200 meters above sea level. There is a place where Jesus was baptized on the western side of the lake. I dropped passes that point and I visited there. People worship into the water. After shoping by the gift shop they go back in the city or somewhere nearby attractions.
I’m trying to find a place in the eastern part of the lake. A place at the foot of the Golan Heights. But I have not found so far. An Israeli who lives there told me that on side of the Golan Heights to see the ruined bridge of Hejaz Railway was also possible. Now the bridge is not a priority. Now I go up but I supposed to don’t progress in this direction. I came back and I went to secondary way. Nobody is there, not a soul. I’m going through a Kiputz, I finally found little after cycling little bit more. Yes, let’s go right from here.
I’m starting to progress at the end of a dirt road in a few greenhouses and see the Turkish flag waving. It has an interesting feature of. The area is not Turkish territory. Still not killed any Ottoman troops in the field. Nevertheless, constantly waving the Turkish flag.
Turkish aviation history’s first martyr pilots Fethi Bey and Sadiq Bey’s point of falling aircraft while the world’s first for the longest time in 1914 and at this point also built a monument of the Ottoman Empire, where is that point? Up to now nobody has been writing from a place with the exact coordinates of that point. This task fell to us in form.
WHERE DİD GOLDEN WINGS FELL and THE MONUMENT FOR MEMORY OF PILOTS
In the eastern side of Lake Galilee to go to the village of Ma Gan and turn from 92nd street to 98th street, left Kiputz name “Hao”. On the opposite side there is a way to fully stabilize. You already see signs of Galilee lake below looks at the full face of the Golan Heights. 10 point for the view.
So who made this garden, who planted these trees. Who found this monument. Turks or Arabs who live in this area? No, he is living in Kiputz which is in down. But I don’t know how to go there. I have never tried to go inside of Kiputzs. When I was setting up my tent behind the monument, a car came. Israel tourists were visiting the area, we talked little bit. I gave information about what the monumen is for and why it is built. They already know.
” This project is the first longest air journey in the world” Wow, they realy know. 7 different cars of Israel tourists came to the place until night. I didn’t know about popularity of this place in Israel comunity. Actually if you wanna add some value into the country history, this is one of these points. “The world’s longest aircraft in the first time, the point where the plane fell. The longest flight ever made in the 1914 campaign. ” Very important point. Ottomans built this monument at that time because they gave the message of we are still alive and powerfull. The empire has gone but they still tried to prove something.
The place which I set up the tent was 200 meters below sea level. There was a lot of wind, If I didn’t set up my tent into woodes on this land, I could not sleep all night. In the morning I collect my belongings and went to Kiputz at 7o’clock. I’m shouting in front of the door, nobody opened. Then the door opens. A man came to asking what I wanted. I came from Turkey and stayed at the mausoleum yesterday, I said. When I asked abou the people who take care of this place he showed me immediately:
“Your man is over there, go and see him”
Hmm, I think for a long time no one came to visit him. I’m going to the man’s house to examine the inside of the Kiputz. I knock at the door and an elderly man looking at me after my bike.
– Hi, I am looking for Yerach Paran
– Hi, are you Turk? (the flag behind my bike is seen)
– Yes. Last nightI camped and slep over the Golden Wings monument.
– Realy, did you stay there las night?
– Come, come to inside.
Giving news to his wife, he comes right away. We are sitting at the table in the room. They speak Hebrew among themselves. They held each other’s hands, both their eyes full with tears, I can see excited.
– Excuse me, who are you, what is your name? Why do you come here?
I told them who am I and what am I doing,
– You are the first one who came here just see the Golen Wings and camp there, you know that?
– Yes, I guessed.
– We have done that area for this reason. We dreamed of Turkish citizens come to stay around there for years ago. You are the first person to come our dream true. We want to tell you how we done there.
I’ve never seen people so polite. They were teachers they would go to school but they canceled their first lesson from me and prepared me a breakfast.
In 1957 he first saw this monument. At that time he was interested in agricultural work around the monument. In 1990 he began to research the history of the monument. Memorial was first recognized in 1940. Results of his research he found an article title ‘National Mourning in the Ottoman Empire’ in the old newspaper archives. Topics in this region about the falling plane. It was about a falling plane in this region. Newspapers wrote that the fall was because of broken wings of the plane from the sky. Not in any combustion engine. Local people were very scared and didn’t understand. Because 11 years after the invention of the airplane it was such an unbelievable such a thing. Nobody knows what was falling. Governor, reported by radio to Istanbul. A delegation came from Istanbul. They has taken the corpse and remove to Damascus Selahiddin Tomb.
This monument consists of 3 parts which was built by the Ottoman sultan. At the bottom there is a remain stone of Roman period which had been in 40 km away. The bearing kind of columns. The middle stone was taken from this area. The top stone was taken from a quarry in the Jerusalem and Al-Fatiha was overwritten by the Ottoman alphabet.
He had put up a walls around it until 1996, he has improved the environment. There is no water in the area so he had brought water from down village by his car to grove these planted trees for 2 years. He send a message to embassy in 1998. There is such a place, come and see. He hadn’t gotten any answer for one year. Later he had send another message.For irrigation needs plastic pipes, can you finance thes asked. Meanwhile, he has planted both Turkish and Israeli flags in the area. Turkish flag was rentmany times by the wind, he was re-planting in everytime. Meanwhile, plastic water pipes and tanks have been paved. The area has began to irrigate. And one message came from Turkish ambassador, they have said they want to see this area. In 1999, Turkish state has given an allowance for this area. When the man has gotten ages his children than his grandchildren has began to look after this area. Turkish government gives money only tree fertilizer. Other than that, this place has taken care sincerely by this family. A ceremony was done in this area which is Mr.Fethi and Mr.Sadık died in February, 2014. The family was invited to the Air Force Command of Republic of Turkey and given a medal of honor.
The man telling this story and my eyes full with tears. I’ve held up and I thanked him. Do not thank me, thank Katya, I did there with her pension. Hahahha. I went and hugging her.
We spend more time with these lovely people after a while everyone goes his own way. In this part of my journey I have seen once again when by living miles to kms the mistake made by a country couldn’t cost that all communities in the country.
I met Özlem and her hubdand Julian next day. They also changed their holiday programs in the country just to meet with me. We meet in the city of Beit She’an, we went to an oasis in the region. Thus, after so much desert trip, I coincides with an oasis for the first time.
Then I went directly to Jorden from north border gate of Isreal.
The border gate was empty. There were a few Palestinian students. They live in Akko in Israel, but they were going to college in Jordan Ibrit. So the Arabs or Palestinians who living on the Israeli side the border are quite comfortable using. The Palestinians in Jorden see Arabs in Israel as traitors. But they also allow for this transition.
It was the easiest border which I crossed in my life. There was an Israil car behind me. But the man who was driving the car was Arab. When I was thinking of how he’ll pass the border, I stopped and changed his license plate from Israil plate to Jordan plate.
It was like when I was student in Cyprus, Cypriot Greeks has opened their border gates to Cypriot Turks. So all Cypriot Truks went to Directore of Population in the Greek part and took Rum passports for them and their children who were born after war. In this manner England and European gates are open to them. In here this men have Israel passport so USA gates are open for them.
It’s time to go from Jordan to Saudi Arabia, let’s go. First I need to learn that the visa of Saudi Arabia is ready or not. 😀