Day 51, 23rd May, Tbilisi

A very pleasant morning was spent exploring the Sevanavank monastery and Jennifer bought some strings of beads made of amber and turquoise, and a pendant of silver with a moonstone in it. She is very good at haggling and got the prices down substantially, although I guess they still made a useful profit.
We then drove northwards towards Dilizhan and Idzhizan as I became increasingly downhearted at the thought of having to cross the border after the nightmare travelling from Georgia into Armenia. In the event we were through before we knew it (literally). For several miles on the Georgian side I expected to see a barrier across the road. We bought insurance for 30 lari (10 euros) and nobody asked about the 33 euro fine. When we come to the Russian border we might have to pay it to leave Georgia, despite having a new 15-day insurance document.
Driving through Tbilisi was a nightmare, not because we went through the city centre on a 6-lane motorway with lunatics weaving in and out in front and behind us as before, but because I tried to be clever and find a route round the city which took us on large roads which eventually petered out at factories or housing estates. There are NO road signs in Tbilisi, only signs telling you which streets you are driving towards.
We eventually finished up on a good smooth road to Khashuri with large numbrs of Turkish trucks, presumably going to the border control near Stepantsmindi. We spent the night at a truck stop with five Turkish trucks and a Turkish restaurant. I went to have a look but got waylaid by a pack of dogs which surrounded me and wouldn’t let me move until a Turkish truck driver waved a stick at them.

Nice parking attendant at Sevanavank
Tourist buying tat
Inside monastery
Lake Sevan from end of peninsular
Savanavank church
Ruins of basilica
Georgian war memorial on road to Tblisi

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