Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Road to Bodrum

With the onset of winter rain, we are enjoying the comforts of the improved road to our village house. When we started building in 1991, our access lane looked like this.  Bumpy in summer and very muddy in winter.  Experience was needed to negotiate the puddles and several friends' cars ended up bogged down half way along. 



Last year the road was widened and gravelled. This is a double-edged sword; boy racers have taken to whizzing past on their drunken way back from village weddings but our VW's chassis will last a few years longer and I don't have to keep my wellies in the car.  


Of all the changes in Turkey over the years, the most obvious is  the amount of road building.  Despite having lived in Bitez for 2 years, I now hesitate to visit friends there as I keep getting lost. 



When we moved to a Bitez mandarin garden in 1983, there was only one road (marked in red) and one river bed that was sometimes a road and other times a raging torrent that tumbled cars from the village down to the beach. 

To really appreciate the changes a born and bred Bodrumite of senior years has seen in the transport infrastructure, the grainy photograph below was taken by Freya Stark in 1950 of the road between Bodrum and Milas. 




This is the access road to Bodrum today. 


"If one were given a single window from which to look upon the changing Eastern world, it should face, I think, the road"  Freya Stark,  East is West. 

28 comments:

  1. When Danilo was a boy, the road from our town to the capital was a dirt track...and it's not that long ago.

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    1. Do you have any photos of the old road Helen?

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  2. Replies
    1. It's gone from "nobody wants to go to Bodrum" to "everybody wants to go to Bodrum"

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  3. At least your little road is still a single lane meandering path. It is way too pretty for foolish youths to whizz along. Speed bumps?

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    1. I think they'd see speed bumps as a challenge and we'd end up with their cars in or on our wall.

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  4. As long as you don't suffer the eventual outbreak of speed bumps...However strong the argument if favour of "traffic calming" may be, they are as much a threat to the suspension of my tiny little car as potholes, and I can't travel more than a few hundred metres in any direction from my home without encountering some. It's like driving on a roller coaster!

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  5. . . the double edges sword of 'development' and 'progress'. Earth-moving machines should be banned for use by councils/belediye at all level - doing this stuff by human hands would slow things down, cause roads to follow contours and provide work/income for the under-employed.
    Yours, Ned Ludd

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    1. A good idea Alan - I still have nightmares that include those massive bulldozers - Look what they are doing to the Lycian Way.

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  6. Hello:
    Progress in one area always comes with a disadvantage of sorts in another. Certainly, the road building will have undoubtedly made life easier for so many but, perhaps, some of the original charm of discovering a hidden treasure is lessened in the process. Change....all around change....

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    1. We can't freeze time (unfortunately)

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  7. It's been so long since I was in Bodrum, the roads certainly changed - I do love a quaint country lane, though not friendly with mud and winter time i suppose. hope people watch the speed bums!
    ps. look forward to hearing how the 'sucuk smell" experiment works out, let me know if I can help more :) x Ozlem

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    1. Thanks for the sucuk tip - I'll try it out without mentioning the lemon.

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  8. B to B, Technology today makes it so easy to change our environment with the flick of a finger. If only road-building and improvements were done on a human scale (like the road to your house) and thus benefited humanity. It seemed like on the left side of your photo, there was a giant tour bus which might give a clue as to why such a big, super highway was built.

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    1. Bodrum is fast outgrowing it's bus station with the amount of buses in and out every hour.

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  9. Dear Bodrum, the cats with whom I live certainly like the fact that they have a front window on which to perch and look at the road running by the house and all that happens on it--cars racing by, cats meandering, dogs loping, people ramblings, the post carrier stopping to deliver mail, the trash trunk with its mighty bar that comes down and picks up the trash can to empty it--all the hustle and bustle of a city street.

    And so I enjoy reading about your street and streets and how your area of Turkey is growing an changing and the road change sounds like a good one.

    I've been away from reading and commenting on blogs for almost seven weeks, so I'm glad to return again to read your informative postings on Turkey, especially the archeological ones. I hope all is well in and with your life. Peace.

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    1. Glad to see you back Dee. I hope you are well.

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  10. I love that 1950s photo of the Bodrum to Milas road..what a difference. I keep complaining about our bumpy potholed lanes, and they are being re-bricked gradually, but I think I might miss all the mud and cow dung when they're done.

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    1. I don't think you'll miss the mud - the cow dung will probably still be there.

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  11. They have built a road on the hill behind our house. It runs from nowhere special in one district to nowhere special in another district. There was a big yellow machine up there for several days, making quite a lot of noise and beeping.
    The road is now used by sheep, goats, shepherds and children who like to ride on trays down the steep slope the yellow machine provided.
    Not seen a vehicle on it yet...

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    1. Is it on the edge of a forest ?- we have seen many of these roads and have yet to learn their purpose

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  12. That top photo looks a bit like the track down to our house in Wales, complete with potholes and puddles. :-) I can understand why the new main road looks as it does, but Freya Stark's photo looks so mysteriously evocative and romantic.

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    1. Now I know why you were snowed in a few days ago.

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  13. The roads (or lack of them) here in Didim are notorious! they've killed many a flip flop of mine.

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    1. I remember Didim when it only had one road too. Again I get hopelessly lost when I go there now.

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  14. We have some great photos of the 'beach road' in Bitez in the 80's as we trundled along half in the sea, half on the beach in our Willys jeep. Fond memories. We too got lost when we drove there a couple of years ago!!

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    1. I hope you'll share a few old photos with us.

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