Difficulties with Monarch Airlines not withstanding, Beth and Marcus arrived safely with smily baby Oscar. Oscar is 7 months old now and delightful – big blue eyes and very happy and cuddly and charming (even if he does keep his parents awake at night!).
I left the family for most of the day to settle in and not intrude – but we all met up for supper. It’s great to have food just like at home – after months of very meat orientated meals through the Balkans. I’ve also missed being part of a family group – communal eating! It’s wonderful to be part of that again.
Did a lot of painting. Strolled around, running the gauntlet of the women who stitch swimsuit coveralls from flimsy but brightly patterned material. They all sell the same crocheted necklaces, little fishes and beaded sarongs: every stall selling the same. The well trodden route up from the harbour to the castle does the best trade. Cafes situated off the main thoroughfare go bust fairly quickly.
On the way down the steps from Gill and Jeremy’s Ev to Yasin’s restaurant – where we would go after supper for Turkish coffee every evening – there is a damp place where there’s probably a water leak. Frogs! There are leopard print frogs (or toads) jumping everywhere – I count a dozen one night – on the steps, in G&J’s garden, and on the way back to the Pensiyon. It’s good if you’re first in a line because you see them all. If you come last, they’ve all hopped it. They must taste foul because the cats leave them well alone. Jeremy sees a sicked up one on occasion which sort of proves the point.
Many young people have left to find their fortunes elsewhere. A local kindergarten school has just 4 little ones enrolled – this school has probably the best outlook in the world – better than Hennock, even. Polytunnels proliferate in the valley behind the headland, and there is a fairly new boat yard there too.
A house built by a rich Russian without planning permission was torn down by the authorities before he even moved in, Jeremy reports. This is good news as it would have opened the floodgates if it had been allowed to stand. This village is the only one to not have a mosque. If one is built, it needs to be in keeping with the other buildings around – using local stone – and this is a sticking point. So the call to prayer is piped in from a neighbouring town – via loudspeakers. These loudspeakers are also used to advertise too. I note the same thing occurs all over Turkey.
It’s a very, very relaxing holiday with much painting and occasional swims to cool off, or a stroll around the neighbourhood and into Üçagiz. Gill and Jeremy allow me to choose a book or two off their stuffed bookshelves. I gave up on the Harlan Coben one I’d taken from the Pensiyon in Kas, as it had missing pages and looked like it had been dropped in the bath at some point in its life. I was fed, watered (or wined and beered) and spoiled rotten by Gill and Jeremy. I wasn’t even allowed to do the washing up! Everyone (including Yasin and Hatice) got a daily draw – which seems a poor bargain but I have little else to give away.
I have sorted through all my belongings and got rid of the tent and cooking equipment, and all my early daily draws. It’s with a slight pang – as I loved the fact that I could camp anywhere and be independent. Now I am reliant on finding hotels and hostels or generous hosts. Gill and Jeremy have enough spare baggage allowance and have kindly agreed to take all this all home for me. Rowenna does feel much lighter and I should be within my baggage allowance on the flight to India (cross fingers). Tickets to Mumbai from Istanbul have been booked, and 3 month Tourist visa applied for. Yasin kindly agreed to be my Turkish reference. Roll on chapter two in this adventure!
A newly retired Terri following her heart into a world of woolly creativity. Live the dream