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 My young friends were like myself; more than a bit lost, from poor families, some orphans with little or no education, some were reputed dangerous, some were known thieves and some had even served time in prison. We had no motivation for schooling. We formed a sort of gang better to play and acquire the respect of a hostile community. Our sole desire was to live our poor lives to the fullest.  

Our explorations took us over every inch of the mountains that surrounded Tatvan, the valleys, the lake shore, the immense Rahova plateau, the magnificent Nemrut volcano, the Taslitepe cliffs, caves, forests…all the way to Bitlis, Ahlat and other towns were our preferrd playgrounds.

In the Rahova plateau on the Tatvan-Blitis road stood an old caravansary resembling a medieval fortress. This long-abandoned jumble of rooms, cellars and dark hiding-places was home to hundreds of bats and it soon became our headquarters as well. The local was fifteen kilometers outside Tatvan and well hidden by a low range of mountains