The schedule has been bought forward. With stronger winds forecast for later this week we’ve advanced 2 days. So no training from the building; straight into round one
Today was meant to have practice jumps from a helicopter scheduled. However, the situation in Syria has meant that the Turkish military helicopter has been diverted elsewhere. A day of tourism and relaxing was on the cards instead then.
Last year’s competition was my first time in Istanbul but I didn’t have enough spare time to see the sights. So I made up for it today.
Istanbul is a City of contrast. Sitting on the border of Asia and Europe this couldn’t be more apparent. My fiancee and I toured the Grand Bazaar. The hustle and bustle as we made our way there on the Metro and tram was energizing. We saw a hive of activity and the smog and dirt of a city. Yet, as we crossed a busy bridge on our tram, surrounded by cars and trucks, the bridge was lined by about 100 fisherman with their rods leaning over the side, line cast in the water below.
The bazaar was packed. Merchants selling their wares, everyone haggling. Then, just a few blocks away, we were able to stroll in peace next to the sea. Set up on the shore were a few rifle ranges (air rifles). At one, the owner was conversing with a lady in a burkha. Further along, the cobbled streets bordered modern city roads.
Viewing the grandness of the Blue Mosque was inspiring, sipping Turkish tea under the trees was relaxing and a glass of beer in a restaurant on the sea front rounded off the day.
I’d like to say I’m well rested but lots of time spent on my feet means I will sleep well tonight.
The games begin tomorrow. Some of the best BASE jumping competitors in the world are here. It’s going to be exciting and every single jump will really count.
Wish me luck.