Friday, 27 September 2013

A day off

Those who work in tourism here are accustomed to having little or no free time during the summer months.  They are used to working all the hours under the sun in the vain hope that they will earn enough money to keep them and their familes during the winter when there is no work.

Mr A has been staying in personnel accommodation in Gumbet.  He is only about 45 minutes away but if he came home every night it would be costing a fortune in petrol.  Personnel accommodation isn't pleasant.  Bosses rent cheap, basic apartments for the season and cram as many personnel into them as possible.  It's not unusual to find half a dozen men sleeping in one small room designed for one person, in bunk beds or single beds squeezed into every available space.

Occasionally Mr A has popped home, normally late in the evening for an hour or two.  Just enough time to get some washing done and have a coffee.  He often uses these brief trips to call in at a supermarket on the way to get the shopping for me that is too heavy for me to carry, and of course in the last two weeks, to fill up water containers.  Then he goes back to work.  New batches of holidaymakers arrive at all times of the day or night, and this is the when Mr A needs to be around, to make himself known in the hope that he will find potential customers.

If you are working on commission only, as he is, it means being on duty for 18 hours a day, 7 days a week.  He, like so many others, is exhausted when he gets towards the end of the season.

The night before last, or rather 2 o'clock yesterday morning, he sent me a text message to see if I was awake.  I was, and phoned him.  He said he was beyond tired and couldn't sleep so had decided to drive home.   He came home and fell into bed at 3.30am.  He slept through the barking of the dogs, and all the other animal noises and woke up around 10am.

He told me he intended to take the day off...the first in 5 months.  He sent a message to his boss, who wasn't best pleased, but then all the bosses think about is money.  They have little consideration for the health and welfare of their personnel.

We decided to drive into Milas and pay Mehmet.  He also went to the place where he had traded in the car for the truck (oto galeri), and paid the balance of what he owed them.  Then we picked up some shopping and headed back to the village where we intended to relax and have a meal together.

On the way, the truck engine became overheated and this gave Mr A cause for concern.  He dropped me back at the house and decided to return to the oto galeri in Milas.  No time to cook a meal, so hastily made him a sandwich before he set off at around 2pm.

He phoned me 3 hours later to say that he had left the truck in Milas to be fixed and caught the bus back to Gumbet.  The truck will have to stay there for 5 days.

So much for having a day off!   He is due to finish his job on Monday and I fly off to England on Tuesday.  His boss has asked him to work on for a few more weeks, but that means he would have to come home every night to look after the dogs, which would eat up any of his earnings in petrol.  The boss is considering paying him petrol money each day.  If he does, it's worth Mr A carrying on for a few weeks to earn some more much needed money.

If this happens, he will feed the dogs in the morning and let them out for a run, then when they are back in the garden he will head off, and take Poppy with him.  Then he will be back in the evening to do the same. It won't be so busy during October, so he won't have to work such long hours,  but all this travelling back and forth along the busy Bodrum to Milas road isn't good.  I'm hoping he declines his boss's offer, and just stays put.

And maybe you understand now why I want him out of tourism.


  1. I do understand. In France 'the season' is really only mid July to end August. Much shorter but more desperation for the tourist euro.

    1. Hi Rosie. It's a real struggle for people in tourism, and to be honest holidaymakers really don't have the money to spend these days x

  2. Yes, yes, hope he's out as soon as possible, poor man. Sounds interminable. Hope the truck gets sorted and fingers crossed he'll say no. No. NO. Not long til Tuesday though!!! My mum arrives then for a visit and I'm excited already, although with Janice here, I'm a bit less so than I would be otherwise.

    1. I'm hoping he'll say no Annie. He needs a break. I am soooo looking forward to Tuesday! And you are too I see. Will be lovely to have your mum there, and I am sure you are having a lovely time with Janice...give her my love xxx

  3. Yes I certainly can see why!
    No wonder he gets s bit iffy at times working under those conditions.

    1. It's not surprising Helen. I have to make allowances for the iffyness...not always, but most of the time !

  4. That's no way for a person to have to make a living, Ayak, such long hours and such uncertainty about what or even whether he'll earn. I do hope he says No and comes home where he belongs. Fingers crossed for the truck repair.

    1. There's too much uncertainty Perpetua. He came home this evening on the bus because he was told the truck was ready. When he arrived he received a phone call to say it wasn't, and it would now be Monday. Aaargh!

  5. I hope you don`t get a huge bill for the truck.
    I do understand entirely your wish to get him to ditch the tourism business which is so uncertain.
    I went to Kircilar in Selcuk yesterday, because I want a new leather or suede jacket. I was amazed at how many people were buying. The staff there work on commission and the ones I spoke to said they have made a lot of money this summer.
    I wish this was the case for the majority of tourism workers, but sadly it is not.

    1. It's certainly not the norm for tourism workers to make a lot of money Fleur, as we well know. Good luck to the staff at Kircilar. It is nice to hear of at least some people earning good money.

      I am assuming that there is some kind of warranty on the truck even though its secondhand. It was bought only a matter of weeks ago from an oto galeri, so I think they will be responsible for the cost of repairs...I certainly hope so!


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