When Mr Ayak and I had a lengthy conversation on the phone with his sister, Esma, this week, it got me thinking about how useful it is to have a doctor in the family. And particularly with my current predicament, because she is an orthopaedic surgeon. You can never be quite sure that doctors are giving you the best advice, but when it's a family member, you know they will do their best for you. I'm not sure my back is getting much better, but Esma says it will take time. If it's no better by the end of the week then she insists I need to have more checks. I really wish we lived nearer to Ankara so that I could receive treatment from her. I'm almost tempted to make the long journey, if it becomes necessary.
My brother-in-law, Yakup, is simply a genius. Quantum physics is his speciality. My mind boggles at the thought. He's also brilliant at dealing with computer problems. When I occasionally have a problem that I just can't solve, I phone him and he gains access to my pc from his home in Ankara. Whilst we are talking on the phone, I just sit back and watch while the cursor moves and clicks and he sorts it all out for me.
I shouldn't forget to mention my father-in-law of course. Although I dislike him, I am grateful that he has given us this house to live in. So useful in our current financial situation, not having to pay rent every month.
The family I married into is a large extended one. Amongst the various cousins there are teachers, musicians, and more doctors. Because they are dotted about all over Turkey, I've only met a fraction of them.
Mr Ayak has been having problems with his teeth for some time now. Serious problems. He's afraid of dentists. He won't admit it... he just makes excuses about not having time to see one. His cousin, Volkan, is a dentist. He used to live in Sivas in the east of Turkey, which meant that Mr Ayak rarely saw him, Because Mr A spent his childhood with his grandparents in Sivas, he and Volkan grew up together so were very close.
Volkan moved down to Fethiye with his family last year and he and Mr A talk on the phone quite often. Volkan keeps telling him to go and stay for a few days so that he can sort his teeth out for him...at no charge. Now is the time to do it. It's the perfect opportunity and I've managed to talk Mr Ayak into getting his teeth fixed at last.
During the past two days Mr Ayak has achieved quite a lot. The conversation he had with Esma has made me less anxious about my injury. He recognised the problems I had with Milly and Monty and has re-homed them. My landline has been out of order for a week, and he has dealt with this. He visited the Muhtar and the over-flowing rubbish bin has now been emptied. He accompanied me to Milas so that he could carry back all the heavy shopping. He also called in a favour from a friend in the village...who spent yesterday clearing the garden...and will be back again today to finish the job.
So yesterday I sent him off on the bus to Fethiye to have his dental treatment. He needs root canal work, bridges and crowns and all sorts of things. It will only take a few days...dental work is fast and efficient in Turkey.
He'll be back in no time....with a dazzling new smile!