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From Jane R. - Thursday, 11th September 2008, 00:53 (GMT)
Hey Maree, I have been following your travel blogs and all the pictures looking great! You looked so relaxed and getting adventurous by each passing day.... Wish I was there with you all guys... sounds so interesting and totally different from touristy package. Not sure which is more fun in this regard!? :-))Gee.....and really?? Am so surprised to learn that Greeks are not as friendly as the Turks or good old aussies like us. Guess that the more you travel and experience all sort of things exotic, ordinary, unusual, etc..the more you become more appreciative of things and life. God Bless .... take care. Don't get too homesick yet!! ha! Love Jane.
Maree says hi!
This way of travel is definitely way better than tourist packages. We have complete independence to do what we want and it's soooo much cheaper!!
Greek people are probably just as friendly as the Turks but it is just not as obvious by their body language and speech patterns (tone of voice). Apologies to any Greeks or relatives (Sorry Alex!).

From Jane R. - Thursday, 11th September 2008, 01:29 (GMT)
Yes me again, Maree! Brain freeze! ha! Just a quick note here whether you are interested or not...probably not, (like me ;-} ) Roger Federer won his fifth straight US Open (against Scot Andy Murray) and he is a very relieved man and still is a force to be reckoned among men's tennis circuit. Cheers, J x
Thanks Jane! Will pass the message on to Maree.
From B & V & G - Tuesday, 19th August 2008, 00:05 (GMT)
HI! Had a great few days with Gemma and Alex! Lots of great conversation and trivia.
Now we are reading your website! Gemma says she is not getting your emails!
Take care
Us xoxo
Wednesday 20 August
Hİ! Thats great that you had a great time altogether. Glad you got a chance to read our website. So far the trip has been uneventful concerning safety. We try to remember to take extra care when crossing the road because its easy to forget the traffic goes the other way. We still all look left first when infact we should be looking right! We are also mindful of the fact that Maree is deaf and cannot hear the traffic that comes from behind us when its necessary for us to walk on the edge of the road. Most drivers are quite considerate to pedestians. The traffic is mostly quite ordered and nothing like the chaos of İndia. Love us xox
From cathy - Tuesday, 29th July 2008, 04:32 (GMT)
have a great time, see you when you return
Thanks Cathy!
Can't wait to catch up with you again...İ'm sure we'll have lots of interestıng and exciting stories to tell!!
From Peter&Robyn - Monday, 11th August 2008, 01:42 (GMT)
Hi Maree,
We are thinking of you often,
and praying for you regularly.
Sounds like you and your friends are having a wonderful time. So glad you were able to go on this trip. Continue to enjoy.Missing you. Love. P & R
Hi!
I will pass your message and good wishes onto Maree. She has been quite sick for most of the trip but she is improving slowly. The trip so far has been quite difficult for her because everything is so different. I think she will enjoy being back in Turkey. Cathy
From Gemma - Thursday, 21st August 2008, 00:21 (GMT)
Hey everyone!

Still having fun? where are you? what's happening? I'm off to work for the next four days and we are on sale! Yah! i'm tired at just the thought! I road 40kms on my bike on tuesday! All by myself - i'm so proud!
xoxoxo
Wow Gemma! That' s fantastic! Where did you ride? Don't work too hard during the sales!
We are at Kaş on the west coast of Turkey. I have written a big post on this site telling of all our recent adventures. Everything's been great! We all get a bit tired and cranky at times...and overheat. But basically we're all getting on well and having a blast! Look after yourself and take care on your bike! Love mum xox
From cathy - Sunday, 10th August 2008, 06:48 (GMT)
im doing a home alone sunday 2day, read all your news, we went to turkey years ago but not a big trip like yours. take care
I didn't know you went to Turkey! We'll have to compare notes when we get back!
We've all been sick except fot Brad! But we are all slowly getting better...after taking antibiotics!! Thanks for your message.
From Sheri - Sunday, 10th August 2008, 02:40 (GMT)
All sounds amazing, hope the trip into Syria is good. A belated Happy Birthday to Ron.

Sheri and the kids :)
Hi Sheri!
We left Antakya, Turkey and travelled by bus for about 2 hours to get to Aleppo, Syria. It took an hour at the border for us to get visas, which cost about $35 each. While we were waiting in an office with army guys checking our passports, we witnessed people yelling and arguing with the same men then exchanging money placed in pockets or scrunched up in hands for visas. I have never witnessed bribes before! It was very interesting!!

Thanks for Ron's birthday wishes!

Love to all the family!
From Gem - Tuesday, 12th August 2008, 23:06 (GMT)
Great to hear the stories! Scruffy is well and Bill and Val are coming over for tea this weekend.
Have a blast
xoxoxox
Hi Gemma!
How was your visit from Bill and Val? Scruffy seems to be enjoying staying at home with daily visits from his dog sitter, Jenny.
Hope all is great your end and that you are enjoying reading our stories. Stay in touch. Love and kisses, mum xxx
From Gem - Tuesday, 26th August 2008, 23:59 (GMT)
Great to read your stories! I'm checking everyday! I am so jealous! You have no idea! Happy to see Maree wearing her cool travel pants in the photo - does she wear her black merino? Wow! What a backpacking classic (you with you pack in the Souk) Wish i was with you! Me and Alex have had colds for the last week. He even had 2 days of work. Uni is still a waste of time..three weeks of class left!
xoxoxox
Hi Gemma!
We are both wearing our Mountain Design clothes almost every day! Maree looks great in her travel clothes and often wears her black Marino! Our sandals have been a great success! They're so comfortable! I like my new ones because they're leather...and I love my 'Solomons' (shoes)from your shop! Thank you so much for all your help in clothing us all for our big trip! Backpacking is great fun!
Our holiday is going quickly now so we are trying especially hard to enjoy every day. We are off to Greece tomorrow on the ferry. Yay!! We can't wait!
Today we visited Ephasus and met Sonjay, the man at the jewellery shop who thought you were Brad's sister. He is really nice! Needless to say Maree and I both bought some really nice jewellery from his shop! Also without realizing it, we sat in exactly the same seat that you sat in for lunch at the restaurant next to the cave of the 'Seven Brothers'. Do you remember? What a coincidence! Sonjay met us there and supplied a driver for us to go to the house of the Virgin Mary.
Hope your cold gets better and that uni goes quickly. We're all very proud of you. Only one year to go!!
We'll try and update the site again soon. Take care. Love mum xxx

TO RYAN
Sorry ryan İ accidentally pressed 'Reply' before I wrote anything!
That's great you've been getting lots of castings. I'm sure you'll get something soon. Congratulations on your goal and first win of the season! That's great. Also terrific you're thinking of going in a big race!
Goodluck with your two band gigs. sounds like you have been kept very busy lately!!
Look after yourself and say hi to Bronwyn.
Love mum xxoxx
PS Seda is really nice. You will really like her! Hopefully she'll be coming home with Bradley at Xmas.
From Gemma - Monday, 1st September 2008, 23:19 (GMT)
Hey guys! Loving the pics! Great to see everyone smiling! The water looks so amazing for swimming! What's Greece like?
Greece is very picturesque, but Greeks are definitely not as friendly as Turks...or Aussies!!!
From Gem - Wednesday, 17th September 2008, 00:14 (GMT)
hey guys!
Love all the pictures! Someone turned on the summer switch here and it has been 27! YES! Last day of uni today! YES again! nearly finished all my assignments!!!

Planning our trip to Africa everynight! I can't wait to catch up and hear all you stories!
xoxoxox
Hi Gemma!
Glad to hear all your uni work is nearly finished. You will be so relieved! Can't wait to see you and Alex and hear your plans for Africa. Hopefully I'll put some more photos on the site today (maybe even the "bikini pics"!). It sounds like Summer is just around the corner. It has been so hot for most of our travels. Until we got to Greece it was high 30s to low 40s every day. In Greece it was low to mid 30s. Since being back in Istanbul we can feel a slight touch of Autumn. It is high 20s during the day but cooler after dark. Only 2 more days with Brad before we fly home. We're nearly ready for a rest and it will be great to sleep in our own bed again and not to live out of a backpack! But everything is good and we're looking forward to seeing everyone at home. We'll miss Bradley when we leave. We have all been such close companions and pretty good travel buddies! Take care. Love mum xxooxx
From Jenny - Sunday, 27th July 2008, 07:54 (GMT)
I wish you ALL, the best of trips. I am so jealous!!! Will follow every step.
Bradley, look after my little sister, Maree. I want her back in one piece.
Happy birthday Ron. You are still just a whipper snipper!! Cathy, have a fantastic time.
Love to all and keep us posted at every step.
Love Jen
We are having a great time so far. Maree is doing really well considering she hasn't experienced travelling in a developing country before. We are really looking after her. Because she is deaf we take extra care when crossing roads etc because she can't rely on her hearing plus the traffic comes from the opposite direction which can be very confusing!
Thank you for your good wishes. Take care. Love from all of us!
From Jenny - Thursday, 31st July 2008, 02:10 (GMT)
Hope you had a good flight all. Watching this space!!!
So glad you've had tıme to look at our sıte! We are havıng a great tıme!! The flıght was good but i really hate landıng and takıng off!!
From cathy - Monday, 4th August 2008, 23:58 (GMT)
just checking in to see what you are up to, be safe. c
HI! Thanks for your message! So far everythıng is going well!
Our friend, Maree, unfortunately got 'Delhi Belly' on the plane just before we landed ın Turkey and was ill for a couple of days and I got the first cold İ've had for about 18months! But we are all well again and enjoying our travel experıences!
Take care and thanks for having a look at the sıte!
From Jenny - Tuesday, 12th August 2008, 12:28 (GMT)
Back in Jervis Bay for 24 hours or so. So can catch up on the news. Love the image of the broken down bus! Women doing the chat thing and the men doing the huffing and puffing throwing all that testosterone around!!! Good one girls!! Naomi is going to Syria in Dec with her uni gp to do intensive Arabic at the French Academy there. I think she said it was Aleppo (?5 hrs out of Damascus???) Hope you are all feeling better. Hate being sick and away from home but have to expect a bit of something I guess. Time is sure speeding by. Watch those stomach twitches. Thinking of you all. Love and hugs. Jen
Thanks for your mesage Jenny. We are all slowly getting better. Maree has really been struggling with everything. I'm sure she will enjoy her holiday when we travel to the coast of Turkey in a couple of days. Maree found some of the sights in the souq (bazaar) very confronting, especially the entrails of goats and sheep...and the plateful of skinned goats heads was pretty aweful!!
We are doing our best to look after Maree. Take care, Cathy.
From Jenny - Monday, 18th August 2008, 11:36 (GMT)
I'm so sorry you've been so sick, esp Maree. It's just the most awful feeling. You are all in my thoughts. Do you know coca cola is one of the better drinks for any gastric stuff. It has the potassium in it to replace the minerals and kills the germs all the way down. It is better than other drinks. Hope and pray you can ALL thoroughly enjoy the rest of the trip. A rest seems in order fairly soon. Lotsa luv.
Just back from Sydney again. Mum still in hospital. Fractured sacrum!!! Very happy in hospital. 62 yrs married yesterday!! xxxx
Wednesday 20 August
Hi Jenny!
Thanks for the great advice re Coca Cola! İm very happy to report that from yesterday we are all well! Yay!! Actually Ron drank Cola wıthout knowıng it was good for his stomach and he seemed to get better quite quickly. Even my cold that İve had since arriving has fınally gone too! You are right about having a rest...We arrived late this afternoon at Kas (pronounced Kash) on the south coast and are resting here for 3 nights. Hope your mum gets better quickly. Cathy
From Val and Bill - Tuesday, 19th August 2008, 07:22 (GMT)
Tuesday- home. Good dinner Sunday withTrev.Roz.Gemma .Alex.Bea ch Walk on Mon. Hotel quzznight-read planetranger.Vand B
Hi Bill and Val!
Glad to hear you enjoyed your time in Newcastle! Thats great that you are readıng our website! Take care. Love from us xx
From Jen (Scruffy's Nanny - Wednesday, 20th August 2008, 11:42 (GMT)
Hi Guys, Scruffy certainly is a "kid magnet"! We're surrounded by neighbourhood children everywhere we go. Who'd have thought I'd be sitting around in the middle of the road chatting with these most charming young ones!! Of course, Scruffy gets impatient after a while and "speaks" to let me know we need to continue our walk. Bossy little monkey! Give me a Rottweiler any day!:)
Hi Jenny!
Glad to hear youve met the lovely kids in our street! İ think Scruffy appeals to children because he looks a bit like a stuffed toy! We think he is very cute (of course!!) and he has helped many kids who are afraid of dogs get over their fear. Thanks Jenny for everything!İ hope Scruff will still remember us when we get back!!
From Jenny J - Thursday, 21st August 2008, 03:51 (GMT)
Phew. Am so pleased there is a turn around in health. That's wonderful about the coca cola. Only good in gastric situations. Rots the gut otherwise as we all well know but I reckon travelling in "different" places it is probably one of the safest drinks!!!! The rest will be so nice after all you have done. The time is going so fast. The images you paint in your diary are very vivid. Loving every line. And that swim in the mediterranean. How was that. Glorious!!! Bless you all. Hug to my girl. Love Jen
So glad you are enjoying reading our adventures. This is a great way of recording the holiday as well as letting everyone at home know what we are doing and that we are safe, having a wonderful time...and well! Great advice about the Coke! Thanks Jen!
From Phil Skinner - Thursday, 21st August 2008, 21:29 (GMT)
Hi maree,
Sorry have not sent a message earlier - I was in Chicgao for a week etc and then catching up here.
Seen you have not been well - hope all OK now and that you are enjoying your trip. We miss you back here at WBC - but enjoy yourself - God Bless - Phil Skinner
Hi Phil
Thanks for your message. Hope you had a good meeting in Chicgao. I'm really well now and enjoying everyday. Time is going quickly. We went to Ephesus today where Paul was ımprisioned. Very interesting place with lots of history. We are crossing over to Greece tomorrow. Backpacking is lots of fun as we get to see so many places.
Love Maree
From Jane R. - Friday, 22nd August 2008, 00:08 (GMT)
Hey Maree, Glad to know what's been happening with you. It was certainly a big ask to step out of your own comfort zone to experience it all, good or bad.... God has been always with you all the way I am sure. Did you actually go to the place called Damascus? Wow! That was where Saul became Paul in the New Testament. I do appreciate all sorts of unfamiliar and exotic things you have experienced through your travel. I am sure you'll come home with wealth of wisdom and knowledge. Always praying and thinking of you. Lots of love from Jane & Geoff. BTW. Rafael Nadal won the singles while Roger Federer ironically won the doubles in the Olympics.!!?!? :-)
Hi Jane
Great to hear from you. Yes I dıd actually go to Damascus! Got a culture shock there but it was still amazing to be in the same place as Paul! Went to Ephesus today where Paul was imprisoned. Off to Greece tomorrow.
Lots of love
Maree
From Jane R. - Friday, 22nd August 2008, 00:12 (GMT)
Hey again Maree, one more thing I forgot to ask. What's coffee like out there or are you missing our good old coffee back here?? The best one in the world I am sure!!! :-) Take care. Not sure when you will be back home. Pls contact me on mobile as I have accidently deleted your number from my new mobile!!!Keep gritting and smiling. :-)
Hey Jane
The coffee is quite strong in Turkey! I've been drinking mostly turkish tea which is quite nice. I'll be home about the 24th Sept so I'll contact you on mobile then. Love Maree
From Louise - Friday, 22nd August 2008, 00:29 (GMT)
Hi Maree,
Just thought I'd send you a cheerio from our beautiful Blue Mountains. I was thinking about you last night, wondering where you were now. Then this morning, Jenny sent me this address to reach you. It has been interesting reading about your journey. Sorry you were ill. But, hopefully you will enjoy good health from now on. Have fun..... Louise
Hi again Louise
Wrote to you two nights ago and again just a while ago and lost the lot! We are now in Naxos. Caught a speedy ferry here from Mykonos. Greece is a beautiful place. We go for a swim and walk around the villages everyday. We are just relaxing in Greece after a hectic time in Turkey. Lots of love Maree
From Ryan - Monday, 25th August 2008, 12:27 (GMT)
HI!!!!


Wow! it sounds like you guys are having an amazing time :) its a shame you went when the olympics were i on, its been the talk of the town.... for example we only got one medal in cycling including track cycling while britain got 10 golds! crazy :) Anyhoooot I am glad to hear your having fun. Everything is great here going to lots of castings. We won hockey for the first time in the season on saturday and i scored. I have two band Gigs this week one at uni and one for a college ball. I have also decided that i want a road bike for my 21st, so i can race in the Noosa triathalon in November :)

Well I hope you keep having an awesome time stay safe and party hard :)