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Monday, November 3, 2014

Afrodesias

Afrodesias began as a prehistoric mound around 5000 BC. It's later temple was a pilgrimage site from the 6th century BC. By the 1st century BC it had become prosperous due to is marble quarry. It's about 120k from Pamukkale and relatively remote so doesn't get the crowds that Ephesus does and, while not as dramatic as Ephesus, it's much larger and quite lovely. My enjoyment of a site is partly contingent on crowds so both Sam and I enjoyed this more than Ephesus because of the few people. We had another nice breakfast at Hassan's before piling into the shuttle with some other folks and set off. The last leg of the trip is by a tractor-pulled wagon that takes you to the site and we commenced to explore.

The theatre were town hall meetings were held.
 
The stadium seating 30,000 where athletic competitions and gladiator games took place.
 

The museum at afrodesias is excellent and houses much of the statuary from the site.

The hall housing reliefs
Back at Hassan's I watched the next door neighbors harvest olives. As you might imagine, olive cultivation is very big in Turkey, to put it mildly. They knock the olives from the trees with a rake-like implement onto a tarp from which they dump the olives into buckets then take them for processing.
Hassan and his family were eating a late lunch when we returned, I don't know who was who except for his wife. There were a bunch of them and they'd been working on the farm all day. I asked about some of the stuff they were eating and, next thing I knew, he insisted Sam and I join them. So we sat down to platters of wild mushrooms with egg, aubergine/tomato stew, bread to dip in a sweet grape sauce, everyone eating from the same platters. Wonderful food. Normally I'm not fond of aubergine, but this was delicious.
We had several hours to kill before the night bus to Cappadocia so Sam went for a run and I wandered around a bit, we ate more of Hassan's good food and eventually went to get the shuttle that took us to the bus station at Denizli. Next stop Cappadocia.
I'll have the "optional native", Sam will have the "swell the calf", or maybe the "swell hen". Hard to choose.

 

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