January 23

Plan A was to explore Thessaloniki.  Plan A did not happen.  As I woke up, I realised I had a lot to get done before I could go and play in the history place.  I got down to breakfast as it opened (buffet for €2 – result) and spent the next three hours eating and cruising the internet.  My Iran/Turkmenistan problem has got more complicated – if I want to take the train through Iran, I need a transit visa.  I also need a transit visa for Turkmenistan.  However, to get either one, I first need the visa from the other country.  Bit of a catch-22.  Will see how this plays out. 

Spent a lot of time on workaday trying to find something to do in February and found a couple of nice horse ranches with lots of dogs in mainland Turkey and some of the Greek islands.  Six messages later, hopefully one of them will get back to me with a place I can go learn some Turkish and play with some big animals. 

Mainly an admin day today, but went and saw some of Saloniki, which is a very young town.  Lots of uni students and young people on the streets, and plenty people looking fashionable drinking coffee in bars and shops.  It’s really a great city, with Byzantine, Hellenic, Roman and Ottoman influences all over the place, and ruined buildings dotting the downtown area.  I think I’d like to spend a couple of weeks here. 

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