Wednesday, 30 October 2013

It's good to be helpful...isn't it?

Yesterday was market day in Milas.  We are economising as much as we can now that Mr A isn't working, so we try to go into Milas just once a week and do everything we need to do during that trip.

We were just passing the large Carrefour supermarket on the outskirts of the town when we spotted a woman sprawled out in front of the supermarket.  Mr A slammed on the brakes and we both rushed over to help her.  There is a ridiculously low metal barrier along the front of the shop which is dangerous.  The woman had tripped over it and fallen quite heavily.  I have tripped over it  myself before now and I am sure countless others have done the same.

Having established that she had not lost consciousness and was able to sit up, we helped her to her  feet.  I stayed with her and Mr A went off to find her husband in the supermarket.  He emerged 10 minutes later and they got into their car. 

We got into our truck...but didn't drive off.. Having braked so hard, the starter motor had jammed.   Mr A ran back to the man and woman in the car and asked the man if he could give us a push so that we could get the truck going.   "Sorry, we are in a hurry"  he replied, and with no word of thanks for helping his wife, and an unwillingness to help us, off he drove.

Mr A crossed the road to where two men were working on a building site and asked them to help.  Sorry, they were busy and couldn't leave their work.  Eventually a waiter from a nearby restaurant came out and gave us a push.   We then had to drive to a repair shop and have a new starter motor fitted.

If we hadn't braked so hard to stop and give assistance to someone who needed it, perhaps we wouldn't have had a problem with the car.   Nevertheless, it does make you wonder sometimes whether we should be so willing to help others.

Friday, 25 October 2013


...I wish!  Sadly the roads in the village are still in an awful condition.  Mr A has been stirring things up on the village Facebook page and also in the teahouse and with the Muhtar, about the state of the roads.  People are gradually taking notice, and it has been said that new bricks for the roads will soon be on their way from Mugla.   I won't hold my breath.  I'll wait until it happens before I believe it.

In the meantime,  the dogs now  have their own cosy bedroom in the front of the old house, in the room which was formerly Mr A's shed.   It has carpet on the floor and a sofa bed opened out.  I also put down two large comfy blankets for them to sleep on, but Freddie and Blondie had a game of "lets rip the blanket" so these have been removed.

There is now no need for the temporary shelter at the side of the house, which was fine for the summer but no good for the winter, so this has been removed.  Mr A has decided that this would be a good area for parking his truck, so he and Mehmet have been digging and levelling the ground so that he can drive in straight from the uneven road.

The dogs still have their area at the back of the house, but it is now cut off from the side.   There is still lots to be done.  The wall has to be built up surrounding the driveway, and metal gates installed to make it secure.

Sammy and Poppy visited the vet yesterday.  Poppy had general anaesthetic to have her teeth cleaned.  What a brilliant job by more smelly dog breath!  Unfortunately, the tumour in Sammy's mouth has grown back.  Mehmet is not convinced now that it was a papilloma virus.  It could be cancer.  At this point in time, it doesn't cause him any problems with eating and is not painful, so we are going to leave well alone.  I don't want him cut about unnecessarily.  If it gets worse, we will deal with it.  But for now, he is happy.

Thursday, 24 October 2013

Village weddings

It's the time of year that most weddings seem to take place.  Early winter, before the bad weather sets in.

I'm probably one of the few foreigners living here who actually dislikes village weddings.  They tend to go on for days which I find tiresome.    I was about to go into detail about a typical wedding, but before I started typing this post, I noticed that my blogging friend Danni had just published a post about her experience of a Turkish wedding, so to get a different perspective, you can read about it HERE

Why do I dislike them?   Firstly, I hate the way men and women are segregated.  In this village, all the women will sit together drinking tea, while the men sit together getting drunk on raki.   I have no desire whatsoever to sit in the company of women, drinking tea till it comes out of my ears, and watching my husband, who can't take his drink, getting the worse for wear.

We were invited to a wedding last weekend.  "Fortunately" I wasn't feeling well, so had an excuse not to attend.  Mr A said he would go for a couple of hours.   Eight hours later he returned home, blind drunk.  He knows he should stop at a couple of glasses of raki, but he is easily led by the men of this village, who do consume a considerable amount of alcohol regularly.   Proof of this is the number of elderly widows who lost their husbands years ago to the effects of alcohol abuse.

And whilst all this alcohol is flowing, we have the men with guns.   They love to fire them in the air in celebration.  This worries me tremendously.  Alcohol and guns do not mix, and there have been many incidents in this country of people at weddings being accidentally shot.

We have two more invitations.  One this coming weekend, and one the following weekend.  Now I have to think up more excuses not to attend.

Monday, 21 October 2013

Something to make you giggle...

...well I've watched it half a dozen times and I can't stop laughing.

Saturday, 19 October 2013

Life goes on

Being away from home for a couple of weeks always makes me appreciate the life I have.

I do take it all very much for granted, and I moan about a lot of things.  The useless Muhtar, the rubbish, the bad roads, grumpy neighbours, etc.  But there's still nothing quite like being back in my familiar surroundings, with Mr A, my lovely dogs, and the beautiful scenery.

I chose a good day to travel back.  It was the first day of Kurban Bayram, so most Turks had done their travelling on Monday, and the Turkish Airlines flights were not full, giving me a whole row of 3 seats on each flight, so that I could spread out.

As usual my suitcase was heavy.  My brother does my airport runs and even though he has been off work for 3 weeks with severe back pain, he still insisted on driving me to the airport.  Of course I wouldn't allow him to lift my suitcase into and out of the car, and that was fine.  However, when I was checking in, I lifted it onto the conveyor belt, without moving the trolley.  I leaned over at an awkward angle and put my back out, and it's been giving me trouble ever since.  I also have a nasty cold, with earache, headache and sore throat, probably picked up on the flight.  The confines of an aircraft cabin are brilliant for spreading germs.

But in spite of my ailments it's great to be back home in my own bed.

As I arrived home late afternoon, I managed to miss the slaughter of animals.  I do try to avoid it every year.  Although we all have differing views on this tradition, I don't object to it.   I don't rant and rave on Facebook about how barbaric it is, like so many others do, who usually don't really understand the meaning of it.   Yes, it's a religious festival, and I am not religious.  But I respect others' beliefs.  I also look at the wider picture, and many people, who normally struggle, are fed at this time.  I eat meat so I don't see how I have the right to object.  And I gratefully received two lots of lamb from friends in the village.

Last night  Mr A was on his way to the teahouse and stopped to help a couple of men deliver a calf.   He wanted me to experience it, but it was all so hectic and there was no time to call me, but he was so full of joy at seeing the cow clean her calf and welcome it into the world and couldn't stop talking about it.

It seemed rather poignant that after the slaughter of so many animals this week, this tiny animal was born on the last day of Bayram.   Life goes on.

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Bear with me....

.....because I can't seem to get back into blogging mode.

Thankyou all for the lovely comments on my last couple of posts, and apologies for not replying individually as I would normally do.

I've had a lovely couple of weeks in England...very hectic but enjoyable, and of course I miss Stella and the boys so much.

However, two weeks away makes me appreciate my home much more, and it's great to be back in my own bed, and familiar surroundings.  The glorious weather helps too of course!  As does the welcome from my dogs and Mr A, who kindly cleaned the house and did lots of washing.   Mr A that is...not the dogs!   I am about to face a mound of ironing though...not my favourite past-time.

I'll be back as soon as I can think of something interesting to write about xxx

Sunday, 13 October 2013


Today is Sunday.  I leave for home early on Tuesday morning.  I won't be seeing Stella and the boys today because they are busy, so I only have tomorrow.  Stella is working. She will have other children with her all day as she is a childminder.  Billy will be at school. I will be there all day but it will be hectic. Today will be spent with my brother and sister-in-law, their daughters and partners.  It's a wet and miserable day so the company will cheer me up.

At this time during my trips I start to feel emotional.  I miss my son, with whom I have had no contact for 15 years, and I always hope each trip that this will be the one where we can be reunited.  I try to make it happen, but it never does. It's 12 years since he and Stella had contact, and although she doesn't admit it, it must hurt her too. 

I also feel that I haven't spent enough time with my daughter and grandsons.  Time moves on far too quickly.  As a result I woke up at 3am this morning, having had a strange, jumbled up dream in which all the people I miss, including my late father, also put in an appearance.

Meanwhile, at home Mr A seems to have the dogs under control, and has been busy tidying up the garden in between regular visits to the village teahouse.

He has also been enjoying the company of the village women:

Dursune (on the left) with the old lady who lives up the hill.  She is in her 80s and I love her because she always calls me çocuk  (meaning child or my age haha!)

Monday, 7 October 2013

Passing through

This first week in England has flown past.   I don't seem to have any free time but every moment spent with my daughter and grandsons is such a joy.

This is a quick post, only possible because I am awake much too early.  I need to go back to sleep but before I do, I'll leave you with some photos:

Mr A now has all 4 dogs together in the garden. Freddie is being good and is no longer chewing everything in sight. Typical that he waits for me to go away to suddenly become the best behaved dog.


Jimi. The naughtiest little boy I know.
Poppy looking for me (according to Mr A)

Stella and Billy...I love this photo