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Thursday, 06 November 2008

Turkish Blue Cruises - Page 3

Written by Aaron Highfill
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Many have lamented the loss of the Windjammer Barefoot Cruises. Catering to a much younger crowd than the big ships, their small wooden vessels would ply the azure waters of the Caribbean with only 60-100 passengers. Famed for their onboard parties and themed nights, they were responsible for many lifelong friendships and more than a few romances. While they have sadly not operated since 2007, those seeking to mellow out aboard a small yacht with the young and the young at heart should know they still could. Not in the Caribbean, but in the Mediterranean with a Turkish Blue Cruise.


Motoring towards Kas (pronounced cash), we had more of what I call "whatever" time. Time to read a book, time to lay out on deck and work on the tan. The Aussie girls taught me to play a card game called Phase 10. After losing badly, I retired to my mattress on the deck to stick my nose into Kurt Vonnegut’s classic Cats Cradle. Despite having slathered on enough sunscreen to have protected most people from a neighboring nuclear blast, I soon had what my shipmates referred to as "a bit of color". Translation in American English: I was sunburnt.

We pulled into a slip in the Kas harbor and ate a lunch of fish that the captain had caught the night before. We had an hour of free time in the village, so I searched for some aloe lotion. Stores in town displayed the English language Turkish Daily News with front page headlines about the looming crisis in the American financial sector. I later walked back to the boat worried about nothing more than my worsening sunburn and the rapidly approaching end of my now oh-so-appropriate Vonnegut book.

Conversation grew to be a big part of our "whatever time". Lubricated by an almost drinkable rose' and a fairly good white wine made from Narince grapes, the discussion came quick and easy. The pending US presidential election commanded a disproportionate share of the group’s interest. Everyone aboard expressed their hope that Obama would be elected. I learned about the practice of Nursing in Turkey, crime and punishment in the UK, where to visit in Australia (everywhere, apparently) and a host of other handy tidbits.

Then next two days were much of the same. Eat, swim, nap, read, repeat. The captain’s daughter maintained a catalog of CDs anyone could request to be played. Norah Jones seemed to be the group favorite.

Adrienne Walker, Turkish Blue Cruises, Mediterranean cruises, Turkish Cruise, Olympos, Turkey, Turkey’s southern coast, Turquoise Coast, Marmaris, Izmir, Fethiye, Olympos, Kas, AntalyaWe visited the sunken city of Kekova and the village of Simena (also known as Kalakoy). Accessible only by boat, Simena is lorded over by a ruined castle supposedly built by wayward knights during the crusades. The climb up is steep and hot, with English signs seemingly borrowed from a Monty Python skit pointing the way along the trail. The view from the top was worth it. There was the ocean on one side, the town below, and behind the hill, rows and rows of hothouses growing flowers and vegetables. Hothouse agriculture, along with tourism, is the economic pillar of the region. I stood peering through the battlements, thinking that if I were a wayward crusading knight, I would certainly build a castle here as well.

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Last modified on Sunday, 16 December 2012

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