Thursday, October 21, 2010

Finding Angeliki’s Cyprus

It was surprisingly easy to get to Lapithos. Especially when I think back to the planned border crossings, letters of invitations and visa applications required for the many countries we’ve passed through to get to this point.

It all fell together rather nicely. We pedaled south out of Cappadocia to the Turkish Mediterranean coast. Purchased a ferry ticket to Northern Cyprus. Cycled 100km to the port town of Tasucu and rolled our bikes directly onto the overnight ship. Border control was a non event. Then 16km and a few thick Turkish coffees later and there was Lapithos. The search is over.

In it 3000 years of history, Lapithos has had many caretakers, Assyrian, Egyptian, Persian, Greek, Roman, Venetian, Ottoman. And from 1925 to 1956 it had Angeliki Kontou, my grandma.

I arrived at Lapithos with a purpose. I came to seek out the place in which my grandma first learned about the world. We had only been in Lapithos, or Lapta (Turkish), for mere hours, when despite the Mediterranean coast and lemon trees I realized that this was a long way from my Grandma’s village. I was going to have to look a lot harder to find Angeliki’s Cyprus.


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