Opening the Pandora’s Box of Excitement!

Istanbul Travel Blog

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Every trip undertaken is composed of different components, is taken for different reasons and servesdifferent, personal needs. The trip to Istanbul was no different, and it is another departure from my Central and South America comfort zones. It is a researched return to the idea that i need to challenge my perceptions. It is also a poignant return to another personal beginning.  This trip truly is a voyage of discovery.

I want to increase my understanding and open my mind to personal discovery; because without this stimulation, I am but an empty vessel. This alone creates a sense of excitement. I have no desire to accumulate countries like wristbands. Trips, for me, are never about vacations. I crave to understand and absorb cultures. I am selfish, I never want to stop learning and I want to be free.  Travel is a journey of self.

Living in Northern, Atlantic Canada, I am reminded that my home is isolated from the core of the Canadian travel hub, namely Toronto. First, I must endure the shuttle service mentality to get to Toronto, to make a departure to other civilizations. The worst part is that the cost of a two hour flight to Toronto is over 50% of the cost of a ten hour flight to Istanbul. Connections from Atlantic Canada to Toronto serve the needs of Toronto. Perhaps this is why Toronto seems like another foreign country anbd seems to care little about the rest of Canada.

Over the years, the prospect of awakening in the middle of the night to prepare to fly to Toronto and then on towards another country was always the first step in airport/airplane torture. To welcome Air Canada as a “service” provider always leaves me in critical mode. This time I resolved to fly, if possible, direct to Istanbul from Toronto on AABAC (any airline but Air Canada). Such were the dreams of a Maritime lad whose illusions turned out to be more than actual reality.

Atlantic Canada faded away at noon time and then resurfaced in Toronto two hours later. I then boarded an Air Canada plane at 4:30pm to again cross the water and arrive in Istanbul at 9:30am on the following day. The flight was everything and it was nothing. It was however a bridge to another continent.

In October 2013, Marrakech, Morocco was my destination and while it was interesting, it did not feed my soul as it seemed to have a pulse that simply tolerated, but did not really extend welcome.  The Eastern culture to me, is still a powerful drawing card and the lure to know more is very strong. I believe the Middle East is misunderstood by the vast majority of North Americans and thus deserves our attempts to comprehend.

Accordingly, my first day ended with a seven hour, time change, a leap into the future and a seat on a plane rushing to another Muslim nation and another room, in the house of my mind. Was I excited....in a word..YES ! And yes...no photos of planes or airports.....!

 

rsvpme says:
Toronto to this Maritimer ..is way past civilization, into some dream land. No matter how many times I visit, it still turns me inside out.
Posted on: Feb 12, 2015
jenniferhibbard says:
Wonderfully interesting observations of your state of mind, as always. It never occurred tome that you would have to fly to TO, but of course I guess. What an expense! Looking forward to reading more...trust all is well with you...
Posted on: Feb 12, 2015
Vikram says:
I haven't gotten around to reading this. So first off, belated congrats on the Featured blog. Next, shame about the shuttle to Toronto costing dearly!
Posted on: Nov 25, 2014
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Istanbul
photo by: Memo