MUĞLA - Doğan News Agency
A Scottish cyclist has won many hearts in Turkey after she interrupted her world tour to save an injured stray dog.
34-year-old sprint cyclist Ishbel Taromsari arrived in the western Turkish province of Balıkesir, four months after she left France for a world tour with her bicycle and only 3.5 British pounds per day for her expenses covered by a sponsor.
Taromsari has been sleeping in her tent at nights throughout her route in Southeast Europe
and she did not hesitate to intervene when she saw that a dog without one of its paws was being attacked by other stray dogs near Balıkesir. The Falkirk cyclist, who won the national rollapaluza women's championship 2013, decided to carry the dog in her bicycle and travelled together with it for four days.
"I pleaded on Facebook to find the dog a family and 65,000 people responded in seven hours," Taromsari told the Doğan News Agency. After naming her "Lucy," the cyclist brought the dog to the touristic resort of Marmaris in the Muğla province and gave it to Jeannie Thirkill, a Scottish local who is known in the Turkish town as "the mother of cats."
Thirkill, who takes care of 250 cats and 15 stray dogs voluntarily at a shelter, said she sent scores of street animals to people abroad who volunteered to keep them. "I will make authorities to issue a passport for Lucy, too, and I will find her an owner," she said.
"Jeannie is an angel," Taromsari noted, stressing that she will soon leave Turkey and continue cycling through Iran, Afghanistan, China
"If I will earn any money in this tour, it will be reserved for street animals like Lucy," she added.