My most memorable encounter

My most memorable encounter happened on a Jeep Safari in Turkey where my family and I met six great people who formed a micro army that would fight together for 6 hours to protect one jeep!
A convoy of 10 jeeps each carrying approximately 10 people met at an undisclosed location armed with every kind of apparatus that could dispense water; guns, squirters, buckets, and bottles. The soaking began before the safari had even started. Long held in tensions were released as people soaked each other in competitive and strategic strikes. The water was refreshingly cold and welcome in the intense heat. K, the youngest of our family was intent on joining in the fun and we spent 10TL buying a water squirter for him. From then on he was like a commando, just picking off targets left, right and centre. It's amazing how far the water travelled when it was being launched from a missile. You could be two jeeps away from the enemy fire and still end up drenched.

As our convoy (we were called "Bloody Gorgeous" for the entire trip) moved out we were given a good wetting down by an unnamed assailant with a hose pipe. The laughing, the shock of ice cold water on warm skin, and the camaraderie were exhilarating. The tour hosts really packed in the activities. A visit to Trout Land where we stroked the fish, bought massive pancakes, and brave people sat or stood in freezing water from the falls. Braving the cold for 15 minutes was the ultimate endurance test and they were each attempting to get a free drink and meal if they didn't die before the time was up!! One young lady managed it, and received an ice-cold coke for her efforts, but she didnít have time to eat her meal because it was time for us to move on.

Our next stop was lunch at a boutique hotel, with the grottiest swimming pool I've ever seen; which they invited us to swim in! We were hot, not desperate. Another group was due to arrive for their lunch so we rolled out, but not before another exciting water fight between the jeeps.

Some people just weren't prepared for the safari; no weapons, and no protection. They were often caught in the cross fire and more than once came under sustained attack when the other jeeps realised they were defenceless. It was merciless at times.
AK, (oldest member of the family) almost got left behind. That's what you get for going AWOL during battle! Now let me explain something.... the jeep safari was his idea, I was quite happy to do the 12 island cruise, but I decided to go along with his plan and get into the spirit of things...but ...he spent the whole time sitting in the front seat, shielded by the windscreen from the worse effects of being doused with water. Our comrades weren't impressed so when he came pelting up behind the jeep trying to scramble on board we gave him a good soaking. Now he was one of us!

The convoy pulled up at the Saklikent Gorge for those who had the stamina to explore the second largest gorge in Europe. Unfortunately I didn't, so I spent the next hour lying down and dozing on the comfortable cushions, listening to the chickens scratching around and giving thanks that there werenít any flies around. The friends that we'd made on our jeep kindly looked after our children while they were in the Gorge.

Next stop, the mud baths, where people just got down and dirty in the muckiest looking mud, but they loved it. AK stuck his big toe in (the one which has been sore for a while) but I wasn't aware that the mud had any therapeutic qualities and judging by his toe the next day, it didn't! Meanwhile I sipped Turkish tea under the welcome shade of a tree; absolute bliss.

Last stop, Calis beach to watch the sunset. There was a unanimous decision to forego this event as we were all tired and really wanted to shower, rest and get ready to go out in the evening. Our driver kindly agreed to our request and as we sped along towards Ovacik the wind soothed our tired minds while we listened to the water sloshing gently in the buckets beneath our seat.

A Brown

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