More than two months of our stay in Istanbul have passed and we began to think about where to continue our journey.
We approached the central agency of Turkish Airlines in order to inquire about the possibility of a flight to Mexico, but when we stood in line, we got to a nice man – operator, he said to our surprise, “Do not take tickets from us. I will tell you what flights there are, but the prices we have very expensive. It’s better to buy on the Aviasales or Matrix sites”
Much time has passed, but the feeling of amazing warmth and friendliness emanating from many people in Turkey has survived … Thank you, Turkey! … Thank you, Istanbul!
We had to proceed from reality, and since we did not have a definite plan and the opportunity to buy plane tickets online, too, we decided to choose a country – Turkey’s neighbor Bulgaria, where we could get by bus.
We went to the Istanbul bus station, and it turned out to be so huge that we were even somewhat at a loss where to find the ticket offices we needed and asked the Turks standing there. They were interested in where we are going to go.
“To Bulgaria” – we answered. For some reason they were delighted and began to loudly chant and repeat “Bulgaristan, Bulgaristan, Bulgaristan!” Surprisingly emotional and cheerful people in Turkey!
We contacted the Ministry of Health of Bulgarian Republic and we were told that in order to enter the country, it is necessary to do a coronavirus test.
We took a look at clinics and hospitals in our area that provided these services and read many disappointing comments.
This strained us very much, as did the thought of going to the hospital.
We began to ask the owner of the apartment Khalil and the workers from the hotel opposite where it is better to take the test and finally decided and chose a hospital.
And then came the day of taking the test. We had to wait in line, but the analysis was successfully passed and the next day, we just as safely collected negative test results.
We asked Khalil to order a taxi for us in the morning and in the evening began to prepare for departure. The bus leaves in the morning.
I was packing my things, and my son found an apartment in the city of Varna (Bulgaria) on Booking.com and waited for confirmation of the reservation, which was to come to my email, for quite a long time … around two hours.
It was already 11.30pm, and I could not resist and said “Let’s sleep!”
And we are already going to implement this idea, but I still decided to look at the email again.
And … that’s the way it is … I think I was expecting … something like that … a letter from the hospital where we passed corona tests.
The letter is in Turkish, I am setting it into the translator. Immediately it flashes in my head that, firstly, they did not ask us for email in the hospital, and secondly, the hospital is open until 5:00 PM, and the time is already half past eleven at night …
I read the text, which is rather chaotic. I quote it in full as the app translated it:
“We are very sorry for confusing and disturbing you. Unfortunately, we were unable to reach you by phone, so you forced us to find other ways to communicate with the police. We found a mistake in your test. You must come to us before noon. Tomorrow at 10 am you will be banned from leaving the country and wanted by the police system. If you do not show up, a police officer will be authorized to arrest and quarantine you and your relative.
I’m sorry for disturbing you”
Mehmal Otoyul-Ali, a Medical Specialist
“This is again some kind of nonsense” – I say to my son, “Let’s sleep better, get up early in the morning”
Literally at the same second, there was a knock on the door.
The son looked through the peephole and turned pale.
“It’s a cop” – he whispered softly.
We tailed off and decided to wait a bit. The one who was outside the door knocked to Khalil, his door was next to ours and they talked about something for a long time.
When we heard that the “policeman” had left, we opened the door and saw Khalil standing in the corridor.
The son asked him who was coming. He said that a policeman came and asked if people from the region from which he had never had any guests in this apartment, and the policeman also said that allegedly a nurse of some hospital testified that her boss had put pressure on her and made her to write negative test results to people who tested positive because they bribed the boss.
Here we were completely dumbfounded.
After all, how can you prove that we have no corona and that we did not bribe?
And once again an alarming sleepless night followed …
In the morning a taxi arrived and we went to the bus station, not fully understanding how it would all end, although inside did not leave the feeling that this were again already known to us … tricks … not related to other people …
There were no obstacles to travel either on the road, at the bus station, or on the border.
At the entrance to Bulgarian Republic, when our turn came to the customs officer, we proudly handed him the cherished pieces of paper we had received with such torment.
“What is this?” – the officer asked
“Tests for coronavirus” – we answered
“We DO NOT NEED them!”
He smiled and said that the presence of PCR tests from us, as from those who are entering from Turkey, is absolutely not required!
THIS STORY WAS ALSO A SPECTACLE!