Well we made it, but not at all in the way we intended to… Everything went awry in the last couple of days. We had intended to wild camp but found the terrain was dominated by open farmland with no tree cover and villagers telling us that camping was a ‘problem’. Because of that we had to change our route dramatically so we could find hotels in bigger centres. That wasn’t the end of the world but then Rachel got sick. She has been battling a gum infection for a few days, and it really flared up yesterday as we approached Istanbul. So in the middle of a tangle of busy roads we called it a day. The only hotel we could find was very pricey but luckily they gave us a big discount when the manager saw our bike. Last night Rachel ran a fever and felt pretty awful, so we knew that rest and treatment was needed.
This morning we agonised about whether and how to get to the cheaper hotel we had booked 40km into the city centre. The agonisingly short distance was tantalisingly close, but we took the prudent option and travelled to the centre by taxi, leaving Thorina behind so we can cycle the last bit when we’re ready to. This certainly isn’t what we expected the finish to be like… But for now we’re happy to be here and very much hoping Rachel gets better soon.