Monday, August 30, 2010

A memorable last night in Turkey, cheers Mahmet!

After a long enough drive from Malatia to a national park we were going to go to, we were still too far away to be bothered so we headed for the Syrian border planning to free camp. We stocked up on kebabs and coca light and headed for the border town of Akcacle.

When we got there it was starting to get pretty dark and the place was just vast areas of flat wet farmland, not good for free camping. We eventually pulled over to assess the situation and a car pulled up in front of us with two men. They came up and we asked them if they knew of anywhere to camp and one guy said… “no no, you come my house, come to my house”. So after a super fast discussion, we all agreed and followed.

When we got there we were directed up onto his roof terrace. It was a small single story farmhouse with most of it still under construction. We were instructed to sit down on long rugs with big pillows behind us, very Turkish, but in a few minutes he had his daughters bringing up westerner table and chairs. Nothing but the best for the weary travellers. Then they started giving us cigarettes, and as it’s impolite to refuse hospitality, we thankfully accepted (by the end of the night though the ciggies were really starting to take their toll).

Pretty soon after we got there, it seemed everyone in the area had heard about our arrival and came up to say hello. We found out then that they were pretty much all his extended family. The main people we were ‘trying’ to talk with were Mahmet (the owner), his brother Hussein and his nephew. While we were using half a page of Turkish in the crappy Lonely Planet as our only means of communication, the women of the family were down stairs cooking away like mad. After about an hour or two they arrived up with an absolutely gorgeous meal of salad, barbequed chicken, roasted peppers and bread.

A while later, Podge got the guitar and we tried to sing a few songs... but quiet badly. I don't think they were very impressed. I think the strings must have been old or something like that. Yeah that's it, old strings. Mahmet looks like he's about to leave...

I have to say though, they were the nicest people ever. Here’s a few snaps we took during the night. They loved the camera, but the women just wouldn’t smile in any photos.

At the end we finally got a shot of most of the fam’ together…

Back Row: Mahmet's son, Mahmet, Podge, Mahmet's brother, a nephew, Me, Hussein (great craic), and another brother.

Front Row: a nephew, another nephew, and Mahmet's nephew we were talking to (sound guy).

That night we slept outside on another part of the roof. They gave us a massive rug with mattresses and the nicest fleece blanket I’ve ever felt. I was so tempted to sneak it out. Even though we were outside, after 28 days of sleeping in a tent, it was unreal to finally sleep in 'a bed'.

The next morning, even before the sun came up there were roosters cockadoodledooing all over the place. After getting back to sleep, I was surprisingly woken up by a goat stepping on my foot as he made his way across the roof to get some food in the corner…it was pretty strange!

Eventually, we went down stairs and were given breakfast. A grand cup a chi (tea) and a savory bread called chickley, or something like that. Tasted exactly like liga or rusk… unbelievable! Anyhoo, after saying goodbye, Janer got a local scarf from the mother, Mahmet’s wife. Lovely woman, but again, no smiley in photos!

Mahmet, being the sound guy he is then brought us back to the main road and we were on our way to Syria. After such an amazing experience, the balance of the world just had to kick… Johnny was not feeling the may west at all. In the wise words of Homer Simpson… “Don’t make friends with salad!!!!!” (unless it’s washed with industrial strength bleach anyway).

After all that we were then refused entry at the border as there were no visas available. So we had to drive 200 km west to another border crossing where we finally got into Syria. Gobble Gobble Turkey, I'll see you at Christmas!!!

Friday, August 20, 2010


At last, after almost two weeks in Greece, we headed for Turkey (the sign was clearly designed by a northsider)! At the border, everything went fine; we had our log book, we got our Green Card (international insurance for the jeep) and were on our way. Before we left the checkpoint, we got an unexpected hitchhiker...

We were given the pleasure of having an armed police escort with us in the jeep as far as Kesan. Nice guy, but spoke very little English. According to Podge and Janer, I was 'supposedly' swerving all over the road when I was looking at the ipod. I'm not sure if that's true; I wasn't paying attention. At one point I noticed I was doing about 80 km/h in a 50km/h zone, so I sort of looked at him and looked at the speed sign, back at him, back at the speed sign... and being the sound guy he was, he just waved his hands upwards and said "no no ok, go faster faster". We dropped him off about an hour later at the Kesan police station and headed on down towards the famous city of Gallipoloi. Not that impressive a place, but we did accidentally miss all the big monuments and sites!

We took the boat (half hour trip) from Gallipoli to Lapeski to avoid the long drive around the water. The boat had the biggest messers ever working behind the bar. As soon as they found out we were Irish they all came over, sat down beside us and started getting us to take photos with them. One lad put on Janer's sunglasses and hat. Then he says… “Irish… aaah, Robbie Keane, ahahahahaaaa, I liiike”!


After that we drove to Troy (or Troia as they call it in Turkey)... I hadn’t got a clue it was in Turkey! It was a big change from Popmpei, which is so touristy. It’s pretty cool, with a massive Trojan horse outside.

After walking about the ruins for a couple of hours, we camped on the front lawn of a campsite down the road. Myself and Janer had a great chat with the owner's dad who was the first ever tour-guide in Troy. We had a traditional Turkish dinner cooked by his lovely mammy… Salad (with tomatoes grown right across the road) followed by Turkish meat balls and a yellow traditional Turkish rice, all washed down with Efes Turkish beer. Class!!!

Myself, Janer, Uran, Uran's dad, Podge, Uran's mum.

After dinner, we had a few drinks with Uran. Great end to a great day. The 5.30 am call to prayer from the local mosque... not so great!


The next day we had a long enough drive south to Izmir. While traveling along, we were coming up to traffic lights, and saw two lads in the grass verge having a full on scrap over what looked like a fender bender. I guess you don't mess with the Turks. From what we've seen driving around, they're very proud of their country 'cause there's Turkish flags everywhere!

In the evening, we were still a good bit from Izmir, so we decided to head for a seaside town called Foca and camped in a site by the sea which was full of complete Pikeys, still beggars can’t be choosers! On our way there we passed through a small village with a massive figure of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk (the first president of Turkey in 1923) on top of a hill. His statues are everywhere in Turkey, especially like the one on the left <---.

Anyway, after seeing what we thought were roads up to the figure, we thought; why not, lets go check it out. Thank God for 4WD. The only tracks up there were left by diggers with caterpillar tracks. Going up was tough, and going down even tougher. The last slope we descended was about 45 degrees and got a hell of a lot steeper near the bottom, but we made it as you can see.

We went to Izmir to following day to see the markets and bazzars. and perhaps haggle for a few rugs and pots. While driving through the city we passed a huge carving of the famous Mustafa in the side of a mountain; looked a bit like Mount Rushmore, not that I've ever been to Mount Rushmore, but you get the idea.

He must have been some man for one man!

After many unsuccessful attempts in Izmir to get a respectable photo of myself and Podge, this is what we settled for. Notice he has his guard up after carrying out a sneaky sack tap on yours truly. <----

I had pictured an Izmir market to be like something out of Indianna Jones And The Last Cruisade, but it turned out to be more like a cross between Henry Street and Moore Street. There were some very persistent salesmen who follow you down the street trying to get you into their shops. When one guy heard we were from Ireland, he said... “Aaah Jaayssus, I luuve Ireland I do”. Even though his Bill Cullen impersonation wasn't half bad, we still didn’t buy anything from him!

This is the best photo I could get of Podge and Janer; she must have had a huge mosquito on her face and Podge was just swatting it off...

Later on we headed across the peninsulla to the town of Cesme to meet up with Flinner and Rootster. After about two and a half hours of searching campsites and asking people if they’d ever heard of ‘Adrenaline Camping & Cafe’ where Flinner said they were, we finally found it (another Pikeyesque campsite) ...and there they were, in the flesh, after driving all the way from China...

Finally we’d met up, and it was big hugs all round!!!!!!


We set off in convoy the next day heading to the ruins at Efes/Ephesos (which the lovely Efes beer is named after) and had a good auld wander. It's a big ruin with a huge old amphitheater and old buildings...

After Podge completed his little bit of business, we went to a little campsite up the road where Chef Janer cooked up an awesome chicken and cashew nut surprise. The five of us finished off the evening with a few cans and some Scotch courtesy of Flinner (which was in turn courtesy of his friend Scanlan) Thank you Scanlan!

The next morning myself, Podge, Janer and a bang on Italian guy from the campsite called Julio drove up a mountain to the house where Mother Mary lived before she died and is thought to be buried. You get a real overwhelming feeling when you’re inside, hard to describe. No photos allowed in the house so if you want to see it you'll have to go!!! Outside there’s a wall where you write prayers to Mary and stick it into it. There must have been hundreds of thousands in it.


We then drove about 4 hours south to Pamukale and didn’t arrive until about midnight. Pamukale (meaning ‘cotton castle’) is a massive hill with hot limestone springs that deposited minerals over the rock giving it the white look. Up top is a large ancient city’s ruins and a club med type limestone pool. It's unbelievable to see, it's like you're on another planet while walking up it.

A couple of days before hand (in the campsite where we met Flinner and Rootster), an old lady told us there was a campsite right outside the entrance to Pamukale, so when we arrived there late the night before, we were beckoned into a campsite by a guy on the side of the road and assumed it was it... Brilliant! Our suspicions that we might be in the wrong place started to set in almost immediately. We were the only people there and there was a massive camel sitting in the corner who we named ‘Kelly’. Needless to say, there was a strong smell of camel poo poo/pee pee in the air, nice! There was a swimming pool about 2 feet deep with a thick layer of slime across the top, even though there was a constant flow of water into it. There were about 6 rooms beside our tents and we were shown into one of them to use the toilet and shower. The room had a filthy mattress and a few rags thrown on it, and the bathroom wasn’t much better.

Anyway, we set up our tents and sat down for a few cans before bed. After a few minutes, Flinner caught a flash of boob through one of the bedroom windows, and then we started to notice some strange behaviour. There were women coming from the bar area into the rooms with young lads for very short periods of time... Yes, we were camping right beside ... a whore house!

Either that, or they were running a party shop because there were a few funny looking old balloons on the floor in the toilets... I know, I'm confused too!

Still, it wasn't all that bad. Kelly agreed to pose for a few photos, but after a while, she turned nasty and tried to bite me. Hence the speedy retreat and the fear of God in my eyes.

Eventually, Flinner had a word with her, and sorted things out. It's all good now. We forgive you Kelly!


After our Pamukale experience, we parted ways with Flinner and Rootster for a few days. They headed south to a house on the coast and we headed over to Gerome in Cappadocia (11 hour drive) where there are houses carved inside the chimney rocks.

These formed after a volcanic rock was eroded over tens of thousands of years. The landscape here is unreal. Here's me standing on a rock beside Podge. I'm bleedin' tiny...

Nice to finish off the day with a tiny cup of Turkish coffee. Check out the pinkey action. One can tell one wasn't dragged up. I say old boy, jolly nice stuff this...

Anyway, another few days left hanging out in Turkey, then it's on to Syria and Jordan.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Smell ya later Greece!

We finally got the jeep’s Log Book in the post on Wednesday from the lovely Geraldine Nugent in the Department of Transport back in Ireland, thanks a million Geraldine!!!

Yesterday, we collected our Carnet de Passage (which allows us to enter African countries with the jeep) from a DHL office in Xanthi about 100 km away. Well, Podge and Janer collected it, I fecked about in the campsite on the beach. I’m feeling a bit institutionalised and may find it difficult to leave if I don’t get out soon. It’s like Goundhog Day, but without the Groudhog, snow, Bill Murray, and each day is a different day of the week. Ok, it’s nothing like Grounghog day. But you get my meaning!

Today (Saturday) we can at last get on the move again and head into Turkey! Good bye Greece, it’s been real!!!

P.S. We may be back yet; we have to get across the border first, but fingers crossed! Come on the Turkey; first stop Gallipoli (the place where the war happened where all the thousands of Ozzies were slaughtered in WWI), remember the film… Mel Gibson… before he had an American accent? No? Then we’re heading on to Troy just below it … Brad Pitt … Eric Banner?

Oh, on another note, I finished my book, Birds Of Prey. Swashbuckling tales from the high seas, amazing! Then I embarrassingly read a book Janer had; Percy Jackson. It’s the ‘new Harry Potter’. Yes, I am ashamed, but I’d nothing else to read! We watched the movie version last night, what a complete pile of steaming poo.

Hmmm, it appears I’ve gone on a bit of a rant. I’ll leave it here so. God speed. Onwards to Turkey!!!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Still in Greece!

So basically, the past few days since Friday have been a blur. It’s Wednesday now and all I’ve been doing every day is existing in the town of Alexandropolis.

My daily routine consists of waking at about 9 am and getting out of the tent as the sun turns it into an easy bake oven. Get a little bit of breakfast (bowl of muesli) and go straight to the beach for a bit of danger tanning, then straight under the umbrella (which also lets the sun through I unfortunately found out) to read my book. I’m reading Birds Of Prey by Wilbur Smith, and although my literary recommendations don’t have nearly as much influence as Oprah Winfrey, I like to think they’re not far behind! I defo’ recommend it though.

Anyway, after that we usually partake in a spot of luncheon on the beach (with Lidl’s finest culinary delights) or at the campsite eatery, which although not that bad, it’s not that good either.

Finally, after a tough day under the umbrella, having to constantly move your seat into the shade, we generally retire to the tent side to marvel at the delights Janer has prepared. Then, this is often followed by a doovde while trying not to be devoured by the mossies. Only two bites in the past 4 days, not too shabby I must say!!!

Last night, after all our slothly ways, myself and Podge finally decided to go for a 30 min run along the road outside the campsite. Though going, but got through it in the heat and with the odd blast of exhaust fumes filling the lungs. When we got back to the campsite, it was cold showers all round. I’ve never been so hot in my life!! That was the first time I’d been out of the campsite since we got here last Friday. I haven’t really left an area the size of 2 acres since getting here.

There you go, that’s what we’ve been up to for the past 6 days… pretty much nothing. Hopefully we’ll get to head for Turkey (again) by the weekend and finally get out of Greece!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Greece - Dedicated to our friend Choncho

We arrived in Greece after a long ship journey, and it was absolutely scorching hot. After driving for about two and a half hours we found a little gem of a camping spot near Athens, Glaros camping.

Our tents were about 10 meters from the sea. It was amaaaziiinnng!! Popped up to the shops, bought a few spuds and boiled them in a pot on the campsite barbecue. Yes, we did get a few stares! Still, our first hot dinner we've cooked ourselves since we left Ireland. After that, went for a little dip in the sea and watched Toy Story 3. After having a sneaky nap in the middle of the film, I then went for the best night sleep I've ever had, ever!

The next morning, we got up earlyish (10am) and headed straight for the city of Karynthos to post Old Man Flinn back his passport (we were supposed to leave it for him in Ireland, sorry Flinner). After about 40 min of queuing, we got it finally sent. 35 hour guaranteed door-to-door delivery, boo ya! As we found out later on, that guarantee was as reliable as a Pikey tarmacking your driveway! Anyway, on the way back we passed over a huge canal with a massive ship being towed through it, pretty class looking I have to say.

After that we got back to the campsite, went for a swim, had some homemade Janer burgers cooked on our brand spanking new stove. As usual, awesome dinner Janer!!! Later on, just went to bed. Pretty uneventful day really, but very very relaxing.

After feckin about for two days in Glaros, we decided to do some touristy stuff and headed for Athens (or Athena as the Greeks call it) to see the Parthenon on the Acropolis. of Athens. Athens is a complete tourist city. It's ginormous with 5 million people, most of whom are trying to sell you something; for example, a statue of a penis with wings we saw in one shop right beside a statue of Mary...classy!

Greece is one of the hottest places on earth. It's soul destroying. When we were in Athens and saw the hill up to the Acropolis, we ended up getting the tourist train (similar to the old Mickey D's train in Bray seafront years ago) because we just couldn't be arsed walking up the hill. Myself and Podge got into the Acropolis for free cause we had our student cards with us. After all those years of being a drain on the Irish taxpayer, I got the opportunity to stick it to the Greeks too! On another note, check out Podge's T-Shirt above...yes, it is pink!!!

Athens, and most of Greece is pretty dirty with rubbish everywhere and tonnes of graffiti. Luckily for us, one of the Banksy wannabes favorite places to tag are the English markings on the sign posts. Lots of guess-work required when driving through a city over here.

<---- Here’s a fine example of how the Greeks just dump stuff.

After Athens, we headed up north and as the majestic sun began to slowly set behind the cavernous mountainside (you like that?), we decided to pull off and camp up for the night, free style. This was our first night not in a campsite, we were in what looked like the middle of nowhere, like a desert. It was beautiful; however, as with most things that have happened so far, it didn't go as smoothly as we'd hoped. After having a quick walk around to check our surroundings were ok, we saw a little dog walk down towards us. How cute! When he got near us, we quickly realized he must have been an abandoned dog and the poor little guy’s right ear was hanging off with a massive open wound. I've never seen a more diseased looking animal in my life. Poor little Choncho, he was not looking pretty. The photo doesn't show his ear, you don't want to see it.

Needless to say, the most humane thing to do was crack him over the head with a big rock and put him out of his misery! It had to be done. We held him down and found the sharpest rock we could find, and with one swift blow…No we didn’t, I can’t believe you think we’d do that!!! …We did think about it though.

That night in our tents, with all the other weird sounds going on outside, we could hear footsteps coming towards us at pace (scary shit), but good auld Choncho who was resting under the jeep started barking like mad and scared off our potential intruder. Lets just say, I didn't get much sleep that night with my trusty axe to keep me company!

After that interesting night in the Barron landscape, we gave poor little Choncho his fill of water and some food (bread and Janer’s spaghetti bolognese), and headed off on our way up along the coast where we stopped at a beach for some lunch and some seriously needed swimming and sunbathing. I have to say, I'm quiet shocked that my Moroccan ancestry hasn't payed off yet as my tan is still a mile off looking like George Hamilton's --->.

...All in good time, all in good time!!! After our little siesta by the sea, someone turned the sun up to eleven. I've never experienced such heat. God bless Mitchum and it's 48hr protection. We continued up the coast (sweating buckets) to see Mount Olympus, but with all our chattering, we completely missed it and ended up camping for the night in a campsite on Stakonda beach (or something like that).

We started off early the next day (around 1 pm) and headed for the Turkish border making great time; however, after about 50 km or so, I realized I'd left my phone charging back at the campsite. Our amazing progress went right out the window. Sorry Podge, sorry Janer!!! Drove back, got phone, back on the road towards Thessaloniki (what a hole), and on to Turkey. All that driving can get a little boring...

...we convinced Janer to bleach her ronnie after seeing this photo.

We camped up freestyle that night in the hills near a town aptly called Drama. Our camping area was dotted with goat shit with a nice aroma of horse piss in the air and situated beside a nicely placed pile of dumped rubbish, how very Greek.

Still, as usual Janer saved the day with some spectacular mac and cheese and some diced chorizo which we accompanied with a 3L plastic bottle of wine we picked up in Italy for 3 euro. Bliss!

The day finally arrived for us to get on our way to the Turkish border with visions of dining on kraukalash and cans of crab juice. After a couple of hours on the road, and filling up the tank and two jerry cans with some cheapy cheap diesel, we finally reached the Turkish border. Flew through the Greek security, crossed the long bridge past all the heavily armed soldiers and on into no man’s land. When we got to the Turkish checkpoint, everything was going rosey. Got our 90 day visas for a bargain basement price of 15 euro. Turkey was in our sights.

Then on to the next checkpoint which was for the jeep. As usual, nothing can go as smooth as we planned. Unfortunately we didn’t have a log book for the jeep; so no log book, no Turkey. The guys at the border were the biggest knob ends we’ve ever met, thank God they haven’t been let into the EU yet.

After that we had to join the massive queue of people entering Greece from Turkey which looked something like the Mexican border.

It was tough going… 4 and a half hours to cover about 2 km with 34 degrees heat, no breeze and no air conditioning.

We eventually made it back into Greece and settled down in a nice posh camp site right on the beach for the next week. All we can do now is wait for the log book to be issued from the department of transport in Ireland (we won’t hold our breaths) and get it sent out as soon as possible. Caoimhe, we’re counting on you!!! All that’s left to do now is chillax the cacks and work on my complexion... Let the danger tanning commence!!!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Le France & Italia...Do it!

One of our main objectives on this trip was to save money, but that went right out the window our first night on the boat over to France. After spending sweet FA on our dinner thinking we'd done such a great job, we thought we'd celebrate by going for one sneaky pint. Several hours later we were absolutely locked chatting with the band from the cabaret bar and two other travelers (not the caravan kind); James from Dublin and a lovely girl called Courtney with midwestern values from Missouri. Jimbo joined us on our leg to Paris although I think he'd have been a bit quackier on the train, and much more comfortable! Anyway, after getting through Paris we camped on our first night in some place by a river. Got the tents up grand and settled down for our first dinner on French soil. Le fromage au le crackers avec trois boutille de cider in a champagne bottle (3 euro a pop, classy!). C'est bon!!! You can clearly tell we've been practicing our French! However, as soon as it cones time to actually talk to Frenchy, we pussy out and end up gibbering something in English in a French accent. If it worked for Uncle Albert, I don't see why it should work of us. Day one done and done!

As much as it kills me to admit it, France is an absolutely gorgeous country. Definitely worth a drive around, but stay off the motorways unless you want to get completely raped by Frenchy! He takes no prisoners… 35 euro for one tunnel, but in fairness, it was a class tunnel. After lost of searching, we set up camp in a deep gorge, absolutely amazing looking place just below a little village called something like Oncieu (google map it). It was like going back in time. We pulled up beside some young French lad on his porch and told Podge to say "Ou et el camping" and Podge sticks his head out the window and shouts "CAMPING, CAMPING?" so your man's mum comes out and Podge repeats… "CAMPING" to which Mrs. Frenchy replies… "Oooh, LE camping" in a French accent of course. Then the young Frenchy started speaking English and gave us directions. I'm sure Mrs. Frenchy was so proud!

Sooo, after spending our last night in le France, we headed for Italia.

Our first port of call was the city of Genoa (or Genova as the Italians call it (an absolute hole, don't go there)). I ended up driving up a one way street to avoid a traffic jam with la Polizia staring right at me. Some auld lad was coming down the street and kept blocking me by driving right up to our bumper and making an X with his fingers. The police man just stood there having a smoke and a chat as I tried to reverse back. We eventually managed to get out of there and on towards Roma. We drove till about 1 am and pulled off the motorway trying to find a sneaky place to camp but ended up coming across a camping site., hallelujah, or so we thought. . Unfortunately, like Frenchy, the Italians decided to rape us too. 60 feckin euro for the night. Ma nadge a San d'Antone!

The next morning, we set off from our Rapist campsite in the north of Italy to Pompei in the south.

After a lot of motorways and a nap or two we eventually ended up at the foot of Mount Vesuvius, and found a class camp site; 'Spartan Camping', directly across the road from old Pompei (<---that's the only picture I took there, I forgot my camera when we went to the ruins). Dave, an Auzzie who was camping beside us joined us on our third 1.10 euro bottle of gorgeous red wine. A few glasses later, Myself, Podge and Dave hit the local Italian bar and ended up barking at some psycho dogs through a fence. on the way home...when in Rome! I'm never drinking again. Woke up at eight and thought I was in an oven. Worst hangover I've ever had. We spent most of the morning in the shade before before heading over to do the touristy stuff in the ruins. After Pompei we headed across Italy to Bari/Brindisi in the south east.

By the time we got there it was already dark so we decided to camp on the beach. Great idea at the time; we set up our tents, Janer cooked a savage tomato, basil and mozzarella salad (thanks Janer) and we all headed to bed early for a good nights sleep. However, we were all woken up about 3am with the tents literally taking off. There was an absolute howler of a wind and sand was going everywhere. With every blast of wind, I got a nice big heap of sand on my face, then the zip got stuck on the door so I couldn't close it, complete and utter disaster. Had to just grin and bear it and try get a few winks of sleep. Podge took the other option of collapsing the tent, wrapping his sleeping bag around his head and pretending it never happened. You live and learn!

After the beach disaster, we packed our shit and drove around Brindisi taking it really easy. No more long trips in one day. We drove down the coast a bit and got an unbelievable cappachino and some breakfast in a little place in the middle of nowhere, right by the sea...This gave us the perfect opportunity to start taking some messy photos... of course some seriously arty photos…

Wait till I change this one to black and white, it's going straight up on the bathroom wall!!!

After breakfast we headed around a bit more and found a class beach and did some well deserved sunbathing and swimming, then onwards to the Brindisi town (bit of a dumpsky) to get the boat. Our tickets said our seats were on the deck, so we thought it was just some weird boat term for lounge? However, when we got on board we were directed further and further to the back of the boat with the rest of the paupers, and yes, we spent the night outside on the deck… At least we had a tent! That ended our week of non stop driving. Ciao Italia. Next stop…Greece!!!