Monday, July 27, 2009

Dutch-style cyclists spotted in Turkey!

I was in Konya this weekend, a city in the mid-west of Turkey. The city especially attracts tourists from abroad for its sufistic (mystical Islam) roots. They come to the city to visit the grave of the world-famous muslim poet & philosopher Rumi (the founder of the order for whirling-dervishes). Rumi lived about 800 years ago. In year 2007, he has been described as the "most popular poet in America". Here is the wikipedia link.
(a photo I took during a whirling (sema) ceremony in Bursa about 10 months ago)

One other characteristics of the city Konya is something totally different: it is arguably the city with most common bicycle usage in Turkey. It even has, although noticably limited, bike pads in some streets. This, I have never seen in any other turkish city so far.

The thing which made me excited was to spot a dutch-style cyclist in a street in Konya yesterday. I have seen cyclists, albeits sometimes rarely, in all turkish cities I visited so far; and I had never seen this before.

So, what is it? :) Well, having somebody else sitting at the back-seat of your bike while you are cycling.. And this "somebody else" has to sit in such a way that s/he will make 90 degrees to the back of the cyclist. Very dutch-style! And, the man on the photo below exactly does this! Even more interesting is to see a women in the role of "somebody else" in the photo since I have never seen a female cyclist in the city. In this case, she is not riding herself, but at least she is "on it".
At the back, the Aziziye mosque is seen. It is attractive with its late-ottoman style minarets.

1 comment:

Tjeerd said...

Thank you for your comment about the new design of my website. The previous design was actually hacked together by someone else and it was missing some features.

But nice to see that you have spotted a cyclist there who does it the 'dutch way'. A very common thing here, but apparently special there :)

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