Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Pergamum, Turkey

School's been going pretty great. I quite like my teachers... Much better compared to last year. Believe it or not, I'm actually looking forward to all of my subjects except for drama, health and sewing. Drama is rather (REALLY) awkward, health well, I never really liked health and sewing? Sewing is fun but I'm not particularly good at it. I'm nervous about my fitness tests in P.E. I have the beep test (This running test. Tests your stamina), 1.6 km run, flexibility test and sit ups test. 

MY SECOND DAY IN TURKEY : We visited two ancient sites. I think it must've been Christmas day? Turkey doesn't celebrate Christmas since 99% of the people are Muslim, so it's more of a commercial thing and it's just like another day. But even if it's considered as 'commercial', in Istanbul, I didn't see a lot of decorations. I thought Istanbul would have a lot of decorations since it's a major city, but nope. I was kind of disappointed with the Christmas I had, I mean I didn't have any big dinner sort of thing. it was just at a Turkish buffet. Oh and no, I didn't eat turkey in Turkey! 

I'd also like to add on to about the food. I was honestly just so disappointed with the food, I was expecting a lot more from Turkish cuisine. But it was the same like I said in the previous place. BORING and you get sick of it. I think the tour group should've given some free time so you could pick where to eat for lunch or dinner. That was the case with Reliance when I went to South-Eastern Europe with my parents & my mum's two sisters, Yi Ma and Yi Yi. We had some meals provided by the tour, then we got free time to explore around and choose a restaurant to eat at. This tour, we didn't get any choice. My dad suggested that maybe it was the fact that we were in Turkey. Well, couldn't they have just dropped us off and recommend a restaurant? Or let us order whatever we want instead of the set meals. Eeyer. 

So before I get off topic, that morning, we visited the ruins of Troy. I was actually really excited to visit the ruins of Troy. Before I wasn't aware that Troy was in Turkey. I always thought it was in Greece since movies portray it in Greece with you know all those wooden horses and trojans, blahblahblah.  But it's actually all Turkish. According to our tourist guide, Bill, the Turks were really angry when they portrayed the location in Greece in the movie Troy with Brad Pitt lol! 

There was a really big wooden horse. I climbed up , the stairs were very steep. 

But frankly, I think that the ruins of Troy really isn't that great. It wasn't up to my expectations. I guess it's because everything is everywhere at each site, and it's kind of hard to imagine what was what. You just see a lot of old rocks and bricks. 

OH ON THE WAY (I think) we were driving around this beautiful mountain (Reminded me of Croatia), and we saw a GREEK ISLAND from far! Lesbos! The word 'lesbian' is actually derived from the name of that island. I want to visit Greece one day. Especially Santorini.

We visited another ancient site, Pergamum (Or Pergamon. The pronunciation is Pergamon). We visited the Asclepion of Pergamum which was a medical healing centre back in the ancient days.  Methods of treatment included praying, sun and water baths, exercises,  walking bare-footed, listening to music, drug therapy and giving blood, etc. There was also a stream so the water was nice to listen to. 

I also learned that the theory about snakes healing people. Our tourist guide said that a man who was dying, was so sick and wanted to kill himself. So he stumbled across two snakes, thinking that they could bite them and he could die. But instead, he healed!  
The statue thing of the two snakes
The Asclepion of Pergamum is really beautiful, I loved visiting that place. There is a library, but what is left isn't that much, so kind of hard to imagine what it would've looked like. The Asclepion of Pergamum also has a big theatre! The theatre is stunning. Bill said that it's a 'small' theatre, and I didn't understand what he meant but later on when I went to Ephesus, I understood why since I saw the theatre there. The theatre in the Asclepion of Pergamum can hold 5,000 people. The one in Ephesus can hold up to 20,000 people! However, in my opinion, I think the one in the healing centre looks prettier and more unique. Everything is preserved well! Found in 4th century BC. I really admire ancient things. 

Dinner was pretty average. I think it was at a buffet? I'm not quite sure. 

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