We are half way through Ramadan now...or Ramazan as it's known in Turkey. It's not good when Ramazan occurs in the middle of summer. Fasting is difficult because the days are so long, and I will never know how people manage to survive without water in this heat. But they do, and I admire their dedication.
The drummer is out every night around 3am. It's a tradition that seems to be dying out in some of the bigger towns, but it continues in this village. I had been dreading it because it doesn't take much to start my dogs barking, and sure enough on the first night, as the drummer passed my gate, they went berserk. I got up to try to stop them, and saw the drummer bid a hasty retreat down the hill. They had clearly scared him off.
On the second night, I heard him further down in the village, but he didn't venture up this far and since then he has decided to keep his distance. Having said that, my dogs will often find something to bark about in the middle of the night. Freddie has found a way of sliding under the metal fencing into the "dog-free" part of the garden, then barking for me to get up and let him in. If I don't respond fairly quickly, the others join in the barking to let me know.
Last week I went into Milas to collect a few things from the vet, to get a haircut, and some shopping.
When it's almost midday and the sun is beating down, you don't want to spend any more time than necessary on a hot, stuffy dolmus, with shopping that needs to be in the fridge asap. But it's all in the hands of the dolmus driver, and this one had errands to run. We drove all around the back streets of Milas and through the industrial estate, where he made several stops to buy paint, wood, plastic piping, several 50kg bags of fertiliser, and finally the petrol station where he filled up 3 empty 5 litre plastic bottles with petrol.
So the journey which normally takes 20 minutes, stretched into and hour and ten minutes. I was sweating so much I was almost stuck to the seat by the time I arrived at my stop. But of course I'm not complaining because you know I love these drivers. I've mentioned many times how they will put themselves out for anyone..nothing is ever too much trouble.
Dursune seems to be over-run with chickens. Her well fed hens just seem to keep giving birth, and chicks are running around everywhere. I am always very careful when I let the dogs out for a run, to check that there are no chicks in the lane outside the house, because I don't want the dogs chasing them. To be honest, even if one or two are about, the dogs ignore them in their haste to run up the hill behind the house.
However, two days ago, three chicks managed to get into our garden. I was in the house, where I usually am during the hottest part of the day, when I heard the chirping and the dogs barking. I rushed outside, but I was too late to save one of the chicks. Freddie, Megan and Poppy had cornered the poor little thing and killed it. Megan had it in her mouth and I shouted at her to drop it, which she did immediately, and all three dogs backed off and allowed me to retrieve the body. The two other chicks had managed to escape in time. I guess my dogs thought the chick was fair game as it had entered our garden, their territory, so I can't really blame them.
I did find it very upsetting though. I called out to Dursune and showed her the dead chick and explained what had happened. She just shrugged and accepted it...she is a village woman after all and is used to this kind of thing. She just said to throw the body away. Maybe she was slightly relieved that it was one less to look after.