Pinned toot

If you read and enjoy my travel posts through my website or Mastodon* and you are planning to travel to somewhere I've been and you can't afford an actual travel agent and you find travel planning too stressful or time consuming to fit into your life, I would be delighted to share advice.

My specialties are land and sea (not air) transit, especially long distance European buses, and finding vegan food. I'm happy to also help with general stuff to do, and even more in-depth help with planning and realistic budgeting if you want because I actually love wasting away hours and days researching travel stuff.

*or a feed reader you built yourself or another decentralised service

I'm in Cologne Airport again. It's one of my favourite bus stations. Good signage for buses, seating, pretzels and coffee, power and wifi (mostly), and warm fuzzy memories of all the other hours I've spent here between unreasonably long bus rides.

Me: mentions being just off the nightbus on the first leg of my journey from Turkey to the UK

Colleague: but you're going to get on a plane eventually right?

Me: ..... a what?

Okay imma go be on a bus for a couple of days (literally), see you on the other side.

Posted 17 photos: The Bursa 1326 Panorama Museum, which is a big dome painted on the inside with a scene of (I think) the founding of the city. It's surprisingly cool! Entry is 5tl (less than €1) and there's all kinds of interesting cultural stuff inside the building too. When I went in there was a traditional drum and dance performance happening.

I also wandered past the Ataturk House museum, and through Kulturpark and Merinos.

Burns' Night and Chinese New Year are at the same time this year, and I'm gonna be in Scotland. This sets all my favourite food senses tingling.

At a cafe in Sofia, the biggest cat I've seen, possibly small tiger, has made herself at home on me. My legs are numb, and at one point she wrapped her arms around my waist under my hoodie and stuck her claws in. I guess I'm never leaving. Btw nothing makes me happier than this exact scenario.

Sofia is one of my favourite cities to do nothing in. I've only ever spent short stays here, and did a walking tour the first time for an overview. There's probably tons to do really but there's nothing obvious so it's easy to just chill out and rest in nice cafes. Which is what I need this weekend. (To start to recover from Turkey, Country of Lovely but Socially Demanding Extroverts.)

I hate how Turkish bus stations are such a hustle. Like you're surrounded by bus company reps all trying to talk you into taking their next bus to wherever. As if you've turned up to the bus station without having already decided where you're going and when. I mean occasionally, sure, but it can't be often enough to justify the amount of effort they put in.

Posted 39 photos: Return ferry to Ayvalik where the weather was beautiful again, a day of working with a sea view, a nice breakfast with my host, and a return bus to Bursa.

nothing matters but in a good way yknow

Posted 44 photos: Took the ferry from Ayvalik to Lesbos to visit my hosts from a year ago! A lovely time, and I'm so grateful for random connections that turn into lasting friendships :)

Posted 144 photos: New Year with my new friends, and later a village/lake outing, with spontaneous roasted chestnuts, lots of dogs and ducks.

I started this year by having chips (fries) for breakfast, and I just feel like that's worth noting.

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