Well, we're back... home again, safe and sound, after a deliriously spectacular whirlwind honeymoon that spanned three countries and over 18,000 miles.
Our honeymoon, like our wedding, could not have been more perfect. We flew first from Boston to Istanbul, where we spent a few giddy days retracing our steps in one of our favorite cities in the world. To make things even better, we managed to score the exact same hotel room we stayed in before!
That room, #12 at the Türkman Hotel and Pansion, is rather special to us. We spent more than two weeks there while on our trip, at the beginning and end of our time in Turkey. The view from the balcony in particular, looking out at "our" mosque and the sparkling Sea of Marmara, was one of the things we most missed about Istanbul. I can't describe how wonderful it was to sit out there once more.
Istanbul itself was just as we'd left it: friendly and welcoming and beautiful and overflowing with kebabs and apple tea of that particularly most mouth-watering variety. We reunited with some old friends and made some new ones as well, and then all too soon we were off on the next leg of our adventure!
For indeed, here it was that the adventure began in earnest: India, a place which had titillated our imaginations for years. The opinions our friends had on it were as varied as they were fervent, so we had no idea what we were in for. I'll admit that it was perhaps with a touch of trepidation that we boarded our flight to Delhi.
As it turns out, we needn't have worried. India so vastly and spectacularly exceeded our expectations that it may just present itself as a serious challenger to Cambodia for the title of "Our Favorite Country in the World."
Yeah, we liked it that much. That much and much, much more.
We've barely scratched the surface of everything this immense, richly varied nation has to offer, but one thing we know is that we will be back. Again, and again, and again.
The stories of all that we experienced and encountered in Istanbul and India will of course be the subject of many, many future posts. For now, know that we could not have enjoyed ourselves more.
Oh! And there is just one other small little tidbit I almost forgot. On our way home from India, we happened to have a 7-hour layover in Paris. It proved to be just enough time for two hedgehogs to wander about the sleepy city at sunrise, enjoy some croissants and cheese at a café along the River Seine, and grab a few snapshots of Notre Dame Cathedral and the Eiffel Tower.
We would have just loved to discover that Paris isn't all that great, given how tremendously expensive it is (the aforementioned breakfast cost as much as our favorite hotel room in India!). Sadly, though, it's everything we'd dreamed it was and more. As much as it pains our bank account to say it, we fell absolutely head-over-heels in love with Paris and have every intention of going back again soon. (Hopefully we'll be able to spend more than just a few hours there next time.)
All in all, not a bad way to start out a marriage. I can't wait to see what happens next.
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