Istanbul Bound

Istanbul Birds in Flight by Oberazzi.

 

While I haven’t stopped traveling, my travel style has evolved. I now relocate about once every three to six months to a new continent and live in one location for that time. I get to know the city I am in very well, but at the same time, I am no longer part of the traveler’s circuit. When I was leaving Panama, I was offered to go sailing around the world if I could leave the next day. I almost jumped at it, but had already made commitments to people and wasn’t going to let them down. Two years ago I would have been on that boat right away. (Ironically, this is the second time this offer has been made, in two different countries – next time, I will probably do it.)

Come January, I will uproot again and make my way to Istanbul, Turkey. Istanbul, historically known as Constantinople and Byzantium, will be an incredible experience. It is a massive metropolis (12.6 million) that spreads onto two continents. It has been the capital of the Roman Empire, the Ottoman Empire, a critical trade route, and most importantly, it is the epicenter for an incredible mix of eastern and western culture. People have been living there since 6500BC. That is old!

I spent much of my college career studying the history and philosophy that came out of this area. The battle of Troy, the Greek philosophers who were strongly influenced by the trade that allowed their ideas to spread, the crusades, etc…

Since I got back from Asia, I have had an idea knocking around in the back of my head to ride a motorcycle around the Mediterranean Sea, and here I will be, working on that sea! I plan on buying a motorcycle as soon as I get over there so that I can experience the country as much as possible. Rumor has it that I may have to buy it in Croatia and bring it over, as that will be cheaper and the export laws will actually allow me to leave the country with the bike.

I have been playing with remote work while here at CouchSurfing, and while my current job doesn’t let me do it the way I want to (read: big ass monitor and graphics tablet that require a desk for drawing) I am slowly transitioning into a leading role that will enable me to work from a wide variety of locations. If you have any advice on gear that will work worldwide and connect me to the networks that be, please fill me in.

I also have some good friends who will be traveling (perhaps moving to?) that area at that time. They will be riding their sweet tandem bike around and rock climbing throughout Europe, so I plan on meeting up with them during my travels. If you, or anyone you know will be in the area from Jan to August, let me know. I may be freewheeling around Europe on the back of a Croatian motorcycle for a while.

 

-Ben

September 25, 2009

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