With memories fast fading of our longest holiday ever in Turkey I thought I should get my thoughts down before Christmas takes over completely.Our apartment had been let right through the summer, and the reports coming back had been fantastic. It appeared that the sun had been shining for months and we were we looking forward to our visit. Imagine our consternation when we arrived to white cloud. However, as if just to teach us not to take anything for granted, by the next morning the sun was back to cobalt, or is it ultramarine, with hardly a colour change at the horizon for the sea. Wonderful. We rushed down to swim, and for 20 days spent hours in the water, just lazing around for George, and for me trying to use it as a workout as I am missing my exercise classes out there. I started to do a three quarters of an hour swim (there and back) to a little cove towards the harbour from the Yali Beach Club which this summer seemed to be our preferred place. I’m always happier swimming with someone, as I always worry about getting cramp, but so far this has never happened. At four o’clock each day the owner’s dog goes swimming with the chef, and this is always a must watch, before we go home.
|Daily afternoon swim|
We had two lots of friends staying with us, neither of whom had been to Kalkan before, and we love watching people fall in love with it. It’s always the view, then the sea, restaurants and people, in no particular order at the risk of sounding like an X Factor results announcer.
The time just flew by. As always we explored the mountains again, and thought we saw a short toed eagle, but no tortoises roaming around. I think they are on the move more in the spring whilst they’re looking for a mate. We visited Bezirgan, the village over the mountains from Kalkan. It was harvest time and we photographed the sesame crop being put up into wigwams to dry. (At least that’s what we think they are) In Bezirgan there are rows of sort of overlarge chicken coops which we have always wondered about. This time with a lot of sign language we found out that they are grain stores for the villagers. Barley was one of the crops being stored there, and another black seed. We took some home and gave it to our farmer friend. We had been told it was animal food, but it wasn’t anything he recognized. They were loading some poor patient horse with these sacks, presumably with grain in them, and perhaps they were taking them to the mill but we couldn't make ourselves understood enough to say that we would have liked to go to the mill.
We got talking, or rather signing to a very kind local resident who took us into the mosque, beautifully decorated and quite ornate for such a small village, and then to his house where he gave us grapes, apples, and pears. We are met with such hospitality here, it is quite overwhelming. I am always banging on about the restaurants and how good they are. A A Gill was critiquing some trendy restaurant in the Sunday Times last week, saying it seemed to be run by a committee who knew everything about catering and nothing about hospitality. This is exactly why the restaurants in Kalkan are so good. Another instance of this was at Adam’s restaurant. This is just a mile from our house, with the most wonderful views, and owned by Adam and his wife who does the cooking. We had the best breakfast possible, everything homemade. Jams, yoghurts, village eggs (these are fried with spices and are delicious), honey, etc. etc. As we were leaving Adam gave us some homemade tahini, and fig jam to take back to our apartment. Where else in the world………
Melons were in season – and figs. A large bag of ripe, juicy, perfumed figs - £2. We live off Mozarella, melon and figs for lunch, drizzled with honey. Although we try and stay in a few nights for financial reasons and not eat out in restaurants all the time, we now know where to go to find just a snack, say a lamacun (pronounced lamajun) a sort of Turkish pizza with minced meat and delicious, or we have just a few mezze. Then back to sit with a drink or two looking out at the lights of the yachts moored all round the bay, and off to bed listening to the water and the crickets, and longing for another perfect day.