Monday, 8 March 2010


Spring seems to have disappeared.  We were woken up very early this morning with the sound of gale force winds again.  We've been busy moving things to prevent them being blown away, and tying down anything that can't be moved.

We have realised now that the uPvc extension can't possibly remain as a permanent fixture, and will have to be replaced with a solid wall as soon as we can afford to do it.  Neither of us have ever lived on a hill before, where we are so exposed to the elements, and it's really quite frightening at times.

We have also woken up to the news of another earthquake, this one in the south-east of Turkey, measuring 6.2 on the Richter scale.  The latest report is that 38 people have been killed, and I've no doubt this figure will rise.

The Governor of the area said the victims were from the small villages of Okcular, Yukari Kanatli and Kayali, where the quake knocked down houses and minarets

CNN-Turk television said rescue teams dispatched to the area were working to save six people trapped under rubble.  At least four of the victims were children.

The earthquake in Elazig province occurred at 4:32 a.m. (02.32 GMT)  It was followed by an aftershock measuring 4.1.

The quake was felt in neighboring provinces of Tunceli, Bingol and Diyarbakir where residents fled to the streets in panic and spent the night outdoors.

I'll never forget the horror of the 1999 earthquake in and around Istanbul, when 18,000 people lost their lives.  Earthquakes are just an accepted part of life here.  People don't even talk about them until they happen.  They are philosphical about them...and about life and death in general.  Everything happens  because it is the will of Allah..that's how they see it.

I don't pray because I'm not religious...but my heart goes out to the people of those small villages in south-east Turkey today... villages  probably much like this one...they must be devastated.


  1. In the late 70s we experienced an earthquake in Northern Greece -very frightening, with the bed shaking, shutters exploding open and stairs collapsing. It must be terrible to be in the midst of a stronger one.

  2. I grew up in Southern Califoria, and yes, you don't even talk about earthquakes or the resultant aftershocks if you deal with them on a continual (even daily) basis. I think what is sad is that there just isn't the infrastructure and money available in these places, where the recent Earthquakes have hit, to prevent such widespread loss of life. I'm referring to places such as Haiti, Chile and now Turkey. Buildings can be built to withstand all but very, very strong and rare 'quakes, but that's impossible without an economy to support it, and in the case of Haiti, without corruption dooming the buildings to failure from the get-go.

    I trust you and Mr. A stay safe, warm and happy and that Spring, in all of her finery and splendour unpacks her bags and decides to settle in very soon.

    Warm hugs and quiches from Kitty xo

  3. How frightening for everyone. The weather seems to change quite severely in Turkey. Last week you were enjoying the Spring...

  4. Oh what awful news, Ayak. I am sorry to hear that.

    We've also had gale force winds around here and every night we (me and the bichons) drift off to the sound of our shutters making so much noise. They seem impossible to secure - unless you get the fancy electric ones; ours are the old-fashioned manual sort.

    This has been the craziest winter I can recall for a long time. First all that heavy snow, then a bit of lovely weather and now perishing cold winds - when I took the dogs for a walk by the canal last night it was so cold that my eyes watered the whole way.

  5. Jan: Terrifying indeed. I knew some survivors of the 1999 earthquake, and they suffered anxiety for years after.

    Kitty: You've hit the nail on the head. Lack of money and corruption. I know for a fact that the rebuilding programme in Istanbul was supposed to be to strict guidelines but papers were signed saying that regulations had been adhered to, when they had not..too many backhanders. At the time we all paid an earthquake tax on our utility bills which we were glad to do. This was to be used for the re-building programme...but a lot of it "disappeared".

    Monalisa: Yes it was definitely Spring a few days ago...I hope it returns again soon!

    FF: Yes crazy weather indeed. Weather here used to be so predictable...not anymore.


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