Hamams and Howls

Numerous camera shots, film sequences and interviews later, filming was completed. We once more trekked our way through Antalya airport, trailing lots of luggage and negotiating with the customs officers about the x-ray machines and the rolls of film that the cameraman was clutching to his chest.

We landed in Istanbul and headed en masse to the local hamam (Turkish bath) for some hot steam and massages, a hamam that has boasted the likes of Florence Nightingale, Cameron Diaz and errr, Brian May amongst its esteemd customers. We were wined and dined at a fantastic restaurant and topped off the evening with a bit of bar hopping, sampling local bands giving their versions of some well known tunes. We discovered a bizarre rock band featuring an aging Lemmy lookalike and a lead singer who was a teddy boy but who was belting out all the rock classics like Wild Thing.

I've now said goodbye to the great team whom I've spent the past week with though I must admit I'm still not 100% sure exactly what role each of them was fulfilling, there was definitely no hair and makup person. Every day was a bad hair day, but then the director had said in advance that he wanted to capture the authentic spirit of my BMW motorcycle travels, and there is nothing more authentic than people looking at photos of me after a hard day's riding and saying

"What the hell has she done to her hair?"

I've been saved from once more being the Norma No Mates of Istanbul by the timely intervention of Ali and his wife Buket. I first met Ali last year travelling in his landrover in Georgia and then bumped into him three months later on the Mongolian/Russian border. Like me his vehicle is currently in North America awaiting his return in the warmer weather months.

In the meantime, they are home in Istanbul and plying me with fantastic Turkish hospitality, visiting ancient sites and boating up the Bosphorous. Not to mention feeding me up at every opportunity. They have a great house in Omerli 20 minutes outside of Istanbul surrounded by forest.

As I sit here in front of the PC in their living room, I can hear the call of the muezzin at the mosque with an unlikely background chorus of what they assure me is the sound of jackals howling. It's creepy enough to have come straight out of a horror film.

I'm curious how you fund all

I'm curious how you fund all these travels around the world.You can't be earning while you're travelling, and i'm sure you don't earn enough to fund the time away.Are your family rich ?

Living on the Poverty Line

I get asked this question quite a lot, I wish there was some pot of family money to support me in my travels- I usually get a bit a home-made cake as I set off on each journey from my parents, I think that probably constitutes the non-emotional support I get from them.

Seriously though, I am very good at saving and always have been. I generally have a couple of jobs and work long hours to save the money to go travelling. I live a fairly simple life and don't have high income jobs but somehow it seems to work that I get enough to go travelling. I also find that when I'm on the road I tend to live more cheaply than other people, I'm not too fussy about where I stay, I camp a lot, I cook for myself - although most of this is because I enjoy doing it not as monay saving schemes.

My biggest expense is always fuel, unless in Venezuela, Iran or other oil producing nations where petrol costs less per litre than water does.

Does that answer your question?


That's the perfect amount of mishap you'd need in an adventure short. Well done. Looking forward to it.


Whither Thelma?

Has she been flown back to LA like the movie diva she now is? Or is she headed back to the UK?

Where's Thelma?

Thelma is in LA. I'm back in England, saving now to return to the States and take Thelma on a ride across the continent (again).

Enjoy Istanbul

I am happy that you enjoy Istanbul. What about film? How and when we wil watch it...


Buenos Dias

Hi Savas

How are things going in Argentina? At the moment I don't know when the film will be ready- they are starting the editing this week. I'll let you all know as soon as I hear about it.

Good luck on the road and thanks for your help with contacts in Turkey.

hasta luego