With the help of a friend who lived in Kayseri and through a call that had been given to Van’s Physical Education Board, they announced their readiness to welcome and accommodate me. When I arranged the plan with them I moved to the place that they had said in the afternoon. In the meantime, I dropped in on the University of Van and visited its famous white cats which were known for their two-color eyes. This feature of Van’s cat had caused to assigning a part of university to them.
There was a fine slope in the road going to the inside of the town that helped me to move more effortless. I was in the way that my friends caught me up by car. Welcoming and greeting, we went to the place where welcoming ceremony had been made ready. I gave interview to reporters in presence of TV cameras then I thanked them and went to the hotel which had been reserved for me.
The city of Van still carries some traces of the earthquake which had happened several years ago and it reminds people of the bitter events of this city and the people that had perished in this catastrophe. When I put the things in hotel, I rang my Italian friends to know where they are. Happily, they were in Van, so we arrange to see each other.
I ran skated about 30 km at night to get the place where my friends were because there was no car to take in that time of the night. I was so delighted of seeing the acquaintances in this city. They were very tired. We talked a little about the alcohol poisoning to ensure they had become better. As a matter of fact, some state of illness still appeared in their faces. We sat somewhere again and ate a large dinner. Actually one of them couldn’t eat well as a result of the poisoning.
They had explored Van so much that had known every places of it well. It was admirable that they had become responsible for my sightseeing and explained everything to me. When it was time to sleep, the topic of where my friends were staying arose. Due to the high prices of the hotel that I was in, they preferred to pitch a tent. Therefore, they walked towards the waterfront. I felt sad that they couldn’t be with me. The next day the Italians had plane tickets from Van to Antalya, so we said goodbye there and they went for their destination.
After the city of Van, my plan was to travel to Tatvan. Tatvan’s winters are cold and its summers are very hot. Consequently, asphalts of the road were made of rough sands to be more durable. This roughness of the sands vibrated my feet and was really irritating but for vehicles the road considered a suitable one.
I stayed the night in Tatvan. My money ran out in this city but luckily I received money with the help of a friend, so paying the hotels charge, I took up the way again. I was so busy with other things that I completely forgot to take photos and videos.
The next city was Diyarbakir. The heat of the weather was to the point that had made breathing hard for me, but I had to keep going. I saw a watermelon seller in a city on the way of Diyarbakir, so I stopped quickly and bought one. Then with a group of local residents, we slashed and ate it. What a taste it has when you eat a watermelon with about 15 people. I really enjoyed myself. Taking a short break, I began to move again through the path between high and low mountains by foot and on skates. Because of being late, I made a decision to go to Diyarbakir by car and come back this way the following day to skate the rest of it.
The other friend of mine had arranged with management of Diyarbakir’s Physical Education Board and they had accepted to invite me. Despite of being late, the manager of sports came to the entrance of the town to welcome me. Anyway, after greeting we went to a restaurant and had dinner then we went to athlete’s rest house which was in downstairs of Physical Education’s building.
I stayed the night there and had a good rest. I couldn’t believe that the weather was that hot. I got familiar with a swimming coach who had stayed there and been coaching. He offered me to go the pool and swim. I accepted it instantly because of the extremely high temperature. We swam together a little. Our efforts to shoot a video of that place didn’t come out well because it had gotten pitch dark. The pleasure of swimming cannot be changed with anything else.
The next morning that I woke up, we went to the skating rink in company with the manager. There had been built a small rink which was very good for its start. I was skating there that the reporters of newspaper and television arrived too. They got interview and I skated in front of TV cameras then return to the rest house.
Regarding to the end of Ramadan and start of Eid’s vacations, I had to stay there for few days. In the meantime,I skated around the town to compensate the lost kilometres of these days. I did so in the afternoons most of the time and slept until midday.
We went to the pool to swim again the next night. The interesting point was that the guys tried to play a joke on me and tried to submerge me in water and I once experienced the sense of drowning, which was so exciting to me. I should add it that they were not able to overcome my vigor.
Once I was skating in the town and talking to a friend that I fell down hard. My shoulder hurt like hell and my hand bled. Actually, it was not that drastic and just stung badly. I stopped somewhere to wash my hands and feet which had gotten bloody. Then I ate a sandwich and went back to the rest house. Almost all the guests had gone to their city that I sat off as well. I bought a big watermelon again in the way. To tell you the truth, life is nonsense to me without it!
6 AM was time of my exit from Diyarbakir. Two noteworthy matters happened on the way. One of them was a dog attacking to me which hustled into the ground. Fortunately, nothing serious happened. Just few minutes after that, I asked a person the way to the next city. He was very tired and directed me to the opposite way at first and after several times of repeating, his hands paused in the air for a moment as if he had just awakened so he apologized and showed me the correct way.