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Toparlar Canyon Trip

10 August 2018 Friday

After having a long chat with the journalists from Fox TV until the late night, I finish my daily blog around 11 o’clock. I go to the M&M Rock Bar with a friend staying at Dalyan. We discover the garden at the backside of the bar later at night and miss the live music but we are making a nice discovery. I will visit that place once more, for sure.

After having a breakfast at the Palmyra hotel, Mehmet from Kaunos tours picks me up to go to Toparlar Canyon with a British family with 3 kids. Almost all the tourists of Dalyan are British. Dutch, German and Russian tourists follow them.

Toparlar Canyon is famous with its waterfall not far from the main road and that place is full with people. Kaunos tour takes us to the top where there are no people around. We climb up to rocks, jump into waters, and climb up to waterfalls with a rope… It feels like a fun soldier training. The more we climb to waterfalls, the more it gets tougher, the more I like it. After climbing for like 1 – 2 hours, we stop at a medium size waterfall somewhere around the top. At that point I start getting to know the family that I didn’t have an opportunity to know much. Sally and Alan have 14 years old twin daughters, and a 10 years old energetic son, Ted.

Our guide Mehmet says that we can jump from top of the 8 meters high waterfall. Twins and the Ted gets into the line to jump, Mehmer doesn’t even ask, if I want to jump, we all go up together.

To be honest, it looks quite high from the point we stand. I wasn’t like that when you look from down. But it is always like that. It is a feeling that I know very well. When we get to the corner, I guess that the girls would change their mind but they jump one after the other and also Ted. I jump last. After 5 minutes break, they start talking about jumping again. They are young but brave.

Actually, while all that was happening I pay attention parents’ behavior. We passed from very dangerous tracks. There could have been very serious injuries but the parents didn’t show any sign of worry, they even motivate the kids to jump, climb and do all sorts of crazy activities. I am writing at the moment, right at the garden of the Palmyra hotel, Turkish families around don’t let their kids to touch to flowers or run for 3 meters on a flat road.

I believe that people should grow up by falling down, suffering a bit, should see the bottom and should experience all sorts of difficulties. I wish that all those very attentive families could see how unconfident kids they are educating.

While I was comparing Turkish and British ways of raising a child, we are at the top to jump, for the second time. When it is Abby’s turn, after landing she screams with pain. She jumps to the wrong side and hits her leg to the bottom. Mehmet tapes her leg right away. It is definitely not broken but Abby is surely not ready to walk even after 30 minutes long break. We make a break for 30 more minutes and have our lunch but taking Abby down from those vertical hills will be very difficult. Her sister think of calling a helicopter but I make a more realistic offer; carrying Abby on my back.

I carry her among slippery rocks and difficult paths but we arrive to a 5 meters high waterfall. There is no way from the sides. I need to take her down on my back but going down with my hands on the rope, legs on the slippery rocks is very dangerous and on top of that there is constant water. There are rocks at the bottom, if we fall, our brains would be smashed like a watermelon. When Abby’s mother Sally sees no other option, she allows me to take her down. Abby should hold me really tight, I believe that I can hold her even if my foot slips but if Abby falls, I don’t have a third hand to hold her!

While we are walking Abby slips few times because of the way she holds me but here she has no option to make such a mistake. I warn her all the time. I even tell her to hold it better few times in a row. Her parents also keep on telling such things. While, Abby on my back, Mehmet waiting down and all others watching from the top, I start going down. It is difficult. I feel all the stress on my hands and feel my muscles being stretched but if I let the rope slide even a centimeter, it would be disaster.

Mehmet gives directions where to put my feet but the water splashing to my face doesn’t let me to breath or hear him well enough.

While all her family is watching with excitement I take her all the way down. Mehmet says, “you didn’t see but her mother was scared so much that she was crying”.

We are actually at a very special moment to record but people would believe such a scene only when they see in a film.

I carry her at the most difficult parts on my back. And the last part she hops.

Mehmet turns back at some point and says, “Efe, I didn’t want to give you the bag to carry but you ended up carrying a person”. We laugh to his joke with a loud laughter.

As if all that attraction was not enough, we get to the main jumping point. The last waterfall. Mehmet leaves the 10 meter high waterfall to the end. Even after all that Ted’s father lets him to jump. Mehmet, me and Ted, we are at the top. There are plenty of young guys at the waterfall and they are scared to jump from 3 meters but this kid at an age of 10 waiting at the top to jump.

No lies, I am worried a bit. The more I look down, the more adrenalin pumps into my veins but that is nice, jumping after altering the adrenalin is the best.

We get back quickly after this very last jump. Abby’s, parents thank me one after the other, again and again.

I started the day by thinking that it would be an ordinary day but it ended up being an amazing story.

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