I was trying to think of stories about Ross from the trip to Turkey that perhaps I hadn't shared, and I welcome Dave Ward and Keith Drury to add theirs here. Ross and Karen went to Greece with Keith several years ago, so some may like to share stories from those adventures too.
Ross loved people. The highlight of our trip for him was not so much the archaeological sites or following the path Paul took. It made no sense to him--and may not make any sense to many of you--that Keith, Dave, and I wanted to follow the long path of Paul north from Antalya (Attalia) up the mountains to Antioch of Pisidia (Yalvach) only to come back down again the other side through mountains to Tarsus. You see, Tarsus was only a few hours down the coast from Antalya.
Ross wasn't really too interested in mounds of dirt in the middle of fields--which is the current state of Colossae, Lystra, and Derbe, all places we visited. What he cared about was the people. Probably the highlight of the whole trip was having chai (tea) with Memesh and his wife near the mound of Lystra.
Memesh took us all over the site, exclaiming with distinct hand motions things that only Dave Ward seemed to understand.
In Cappadocia, we found a baklava place with another garrulous proprietor. Ross was in his element and had a wonderful time talking to the owner, who was pretty good at English. I don't know how many different kinds of baklava we sampled, including spinach baklava. I think most of us agreed that we would have been fine to stick with the "normal" kind. As we left, we remarked that we would have to remember where that place was if we ever came back.
|Stay away from the green ones|
|Ross looking south toward Troas|
|Notice Ross desperately trying to connect to the internet on his iPad|
|waters flowing down from the natural springs of Hierapolis|
The last morning, as we were driving to Istanbul, Ross was unusually quiet. When we got to Istanbul, it was clear that finding parking and a hotel were the top items on his agenda. After we found parking, he disappeared for a few minutes with Dave only to return with his usual exuberant personality back in place. He had found an incredible hotel whose roof looked out on this--and at an unusually good price. :-)
|Ross in Hagia Sophia|
Here are some pictures that stood out to Ross in the palace:
Here are some other pictures he took:
|Random wedding in the ruins of Sardis|
|Bag lady at the side of the road :-)|
Here are some more great memories:
|Just after arriving in Istanbul|
|Baptismal pool, Church of St. Mary, Ephesus|
|South of Troas|
|Out of order, Sardis|
|Library of Celsus, Ephesus|
Great, great memories...