Since my favorite thing to do in my down time is get in a little time on the court, I still try to do this when I am traveling. Granted, this is not always possible since I end up staying in hotels and most of them do not have sweet setups for playing in the back parking lot. And other times I might be traveling with only a carry-on bag and not have room to take my sneakers with me.
Traveling overseas also makes it difficult to sometimes find a place to play basketball since soccer (football) is the big sport over there. Still though, there have been a few times that I was surprised to be able to find a basketball court in a country where I was really surprised that they even knew that the sport was, much less offered me a place to play some b-ball.
Well, the country where this happened to me that I was the most surprised was actually the country of Turkey. I know, weird, right? Well, I was staying at a resort that was just outside of Bodrum, Turkey and there was actually a full-size basketball court on the property. It sounds kind of crazy right? I mean, I am not so sure that I would believe it if I had not been there myself and able to play.
Of course, the bad thing is that the summers there are super freaking hot. And, like a lot of Europe, it is hard to find places with air conditioning in Turkey. Plus, there are a lot of blackouts in the region where I was at due to an overload on the power grid. The reason that I told you all that is that I learned the hard way that getting hot and sweaty playing a little b-ball there was not very wise of me since it was hard to get cooled off once I was done. I ended up having to get in the super crowded pool to cool off, at least until the power came back on and I could relax in the air conditioning.
Still though, a crazy thing to think back on – that I actually played some basketball in Turkey with some locals. It was like being in any city in the U.S. except that the people I was playing against were wearing turbans! Craziness, eh? Good times though.