After a night of camping experimentation (may I add, not involving Stu and myself). Simply trying to see if it's possible to evade condensation when camping in sub-zero temperatures. Our idea being that perhaps increased ventilation (from our open tent doors) may reduce the water that gathers inside our tents. As it happens, this is not the case – what condensation does occur freezes to the inside of the tent and outside of the sleeping bag. Fail!
Boots on a face the day. Get the çay going. Randomly bursting into a sprint or shadow boxing (while singing the Rocky theme tune) to beat off the cold. This is the first morning of hard frost on the trip. By standards further East I expect it's mere child's play – but it's a novelty to us all the same.
The riding is joyous. As the sun burns away the foggy blanket rolling snow dusted hill are revealed. We pull off the main drag to a village called Eskiahir for Stu to visit the post office. While I wait I'm swarmed by a group of school children. They speak their basic English and I my Turklish. They're very friendly and cheery and we have a luagh while I wait for Stu. Upon rolling further into town we meet Isamil an English speaking lorry driver. We sip çay while he tells us that he didn't like Iran “No women, no alcohol”. Both rather valid points – though I've heard differently from others. We thank our new friend for the caffeine boost and get on outa town.
When we reach sunny spot with a good view we stop for lunch and dry out our wet gear.
Do our usual wifi checks at garages along the way. A guy videos us while talking to his camera. We get talking. After the briefest of introductions he says “ok, go inside and get a meal, I'll pay.” What a legend! After shovelling a good meal down us we join him and his family outside for a drink. He is a Turkish businessman who works all over the Middle East. After two rounds of tea we all leave. As the fog gathers for the night we seek out a shelter. Just off the road we spy an old farm building. Mud/straw/horse hair plaster, no windows – rustic bliss. We utilise the working chimney to beat off the cold. Get a film on the laptop...oh how hardcore we are!!