Dalyan – 17th November

Dalyan – 17th November

Wednesday 17th November was a totally surprising day for me; I’d had cornflakes for breakfast and after doing a few chores I thought I’d call at the supermarket for a few bits. On my way to Migros I saw that Debbie (Darling) and her friends were in Jiks having a drink and they waved me over. I gestured that I would be there after I’d been in to the shop. I made my purchases as follows (price in lira);

3 onions 0.59
1 fresh loaf 2.00
2 red peppers 2.99
2 cans of grapefruit drink 6.50
1 pack of hummus 7.95
1 pack of wraps 14.45

Total spend 34.48 lira (£2.38).

I joined Debbie (Darling)’s gang just as Ann was getting off for her nail appointment but the rest were having another drink so I had a beer with Debbie (Darling), Sue, Fiona and then Brian joined us for a quick coke. Brian is a very interesting man and we had a little chat about Coeliac, gluten intolerance and dermatitis herpetiformis. Brian left and, as Debbie (Darling) had to leave to attend a funeral send off, Sue, Fiona, and I decided our next stop off would be Tez bar, I was dressed for summer and still had my shopping, so wasn’t planning on staying long. After 1 glass of wine I went home with my valid excuse ‘to put my shopping away and get dressed’ for my evening out. Of course I didn’t leave the tipsy ladies by themselves and, once the funeral was over and I was dressed in winter-wear, we had one more at Tez bar before we all went to Lukka bar. It had definitely been an interesting day so far and next I joined Angela, Nick and Ann for a meal and wine at Heybe’s where I just had to have the Işkender kebab (again) as I love it and hadn’t had one for a while. Nick goes mad for one of Donny’s chicken curries which did look good, while Angela and Ann had the chicken schnitzel, also a firm favourite. The food was ace, the live music from Onur was fab and the wine flowed – a bit too much, as it happens! By midnight I had murdered some songs and was well on my way to pointing out how much of an overlooked genius Frank Zappa was while Ann was advocating the more refined Leonard Cohen. I felt sorry for the staff having to listen to us waxing lyrical about how much we loved these artists, but I’m sure they secretly loved Doreen, one of Frank’s finest tracks which I made them listen to. As we left, I forced Ann to come to mine where I was trying to force biscuits and earl grey tea down her – she was not impressed with the hot beverage selection!

Dalyan – 14th to 16th November

Dalyan – 14th to 16th November

Sunday 14th November was a really good day for me, I’d stopped being ill and managed a probiotic drink and toast for breakfast. I decided I would make a beef stew in the slow cooker and I finished off my parents’ laundry ready to take it over to their’s the next time I was passing. My eczema was really quite bad again, even though I had been remembering to put cream on from Maizie Moo’s and I could only put it down to eating normally for the last few weeks. Captain Caveman had returned from Tu Lan but was too tired for a chat today and I read that Austria had introduced a type of lockdown for all unvaccinated people, more here:
On the building site the concrete floor got poured and the workers clocked off. I had some of the beef stew for lunch and it was so delicious that I hardly wanted to save any. That afternoon I noticed that the number of Corona cases in the province of Balikesir, further north in Turkey, was having a surge, despite 81% of their population being fully vaccinated and I wondered if planning a trip up there might be a bit hasty, so near to us needing to travel back to the UK.
For dinner I reheated the Mac & Cheese I had in the freezer and finished off the last of the plums. My finger was hurting and so I left the plaster off of the cut to try to get some air to it, watched Start Up on Netflix, then had an early night.

I woke up on Monday 15th November to some interesting news; Cambodia had opened the country to vaccinated people, read about it here:
Meanwhile, in Saigon this monkey was causing concern:
In Vietnam they had allowed certain tourists in and had reached only 34% of the population being vaccinated, Dong Hoi had cases which had resulted in new lockdowns, but there was talk of vaccinating children so that more schools could reopen.
In Turkey the lira had hit 14 to the pound and I was also concerned that I still needed to book and pay for my flight from Dalaman to Istanbul but was waiting for nearer the time in case there was any lockdown here or in the UK. I ate all my meals at home today as I was trying to save a bit of money, ready for my trip back at Christmas as England was probably going to be expensive compared to what I’m used to. I was also trying to keep track of what I was eating more. I went to the supermarket for some provisions and stopped off at the chemist for plasters that I no longer needed but were good to have.
The shopping from Migros with prices in lira:

1 pack of pasta 3.36
1 pack of salami 4.15
1 Bounty 4.95
1 pack of cheese triangles 6.25
1 bag of crisps 8.00
1 litre of milk 8.75
4 probiotic drinks 17.00
1 chicken 19.36
1 bottle of HP BBQ sauce 21.95
3 chicken breasts 26.11

Total spend 115.63 lira (£8.26)

It was a bit expensive for a Bounty but I was really craving a chocolate bar, especially an English one. My absolute favourite is a Double Decker which they don’t have here.

The builders next door were receiving the latest concrete pours for the columns on the next floor of the structure. I had a call from Captain Caveman, he was well but he said he was feeling the cold a bit now as Phong Nha had definitely cooled down. When I checked that the housekeeping staff had put his duvet back on he replied that he only had a sheet so he was cold in bed without me. As soon as we finished talking I had a group chat with the Elements Collection staff, in my terrible Vietnamese, to ask that the duvet be put on. For dinner I had some Lancashire hotpot which I’d made a while ago and put in the freezer – it’s also gluten free because instead of thickening it with flour I used red lentils.

I had another easy going day on Tuesday 16th November and made a big batch of chicken noodle soup in the slow cooker, while catching up on a few things. The Dalyan main bar street and the walk way by the river were about to get a make over which many people on Facebook were taking umbrage over. I saved a couple of the photos and didn’t bother going to see for myself as it looked a bit uneven for someone with a dodgy leg anyway. I had planned to take my parents’ washing back and return Vanessa’s suitcase so I thought I could do them all at the same time, but then I forgot and it got too chilly to venture out. I had a couple of red wines, my first alcohol since Friday, with my gorgeous chicken noodle soup, then finished watching the rest of Start Up on Netflix. Tomorrow I had nothing planned but sometimes Dalyan has a way of changing that!

İçmeler and Dalyan – 13th November

İçmeler and Dalyan – 13th November

I’d been having probiotics every morning for just over a week and, although there were some improvements, I definitely wasn’t ‘cured’ as I was well and truly about to find out on Saturday 13th November. Vanessa had very kindly invited me on a trip to İçmeler today and, as this was a road trip, I was conscious that I certainly didn’t need a repeat performance of what happened on the Mediterranean Highlights trip only 3 weeks ago. I made the decision to only have the probiotic drink but no breakfast and then I had no chance of having a dodgy stomach, even though I felt absolutely fine.
I knew another 5 of the other trip goers already (Michaela, Janet & Kevin, Martin & Wendy) and the minibus was full so it was only 50 lira each for the return fare. On the way there I started to have the rumblings in my tummy so when we were asked if we would like to stop off at a cafe made from an actual aeroplane I jumped at the chance. I’d been past it many times, although I had never had the chance to visit, but this one wasn’t about to go well!

We’d arrived at the aeroplane cafe and I desperately needed the toilet now but the cafe was closed, fortunately for everyone a man came and opened up for us. The toilets didn’t have the water turned on in the Western style toilets but there were containers of water in the squat ones so I went and was definitely not well. As I opened the door to get out of the cubicle I cut my finger on the lock and then had quite a bit of blood which wouldn’t stop. I joined Vanessa and a couple I had not met before (Andy & Julie), Vanessa had got me a Turkish tea but as I sat down the chair had a puddle of water on it and my top and trousers were soaked. Great! Vanessa and I paid the 10 lira (less than a pound) to go in the plane and it was very strange but interesting so I’d definitely recommend it! I needed the loo again before we left and I felt exactly like I did on the last road trip!

On the bus I found out that when we got to İçmeler we were all booked in for either fish and chips or pie and chips at the Fryer Tuck restaurant which everyone who had been before said was amazing. I was beginning to think I’d have been better off staying at home because of my stomach but when we arrived we had a walk along the beach and the town looked like it was closed, there was nothing going on. A lot of the ladies on the trip had a look around the shops and Vanessa picked up some bargains. I had a soda water while others had beer or wine in the pub and I was feeling really hungry but was worried about eating in case I was ill again, I had already had 3 imodium but they didn’t work at all.

The fish and chips were absolutely fantastic and easily the best I’ve ever tried in Turkey, I didn’t eat most of the batter (which was perfect) even though I wasn’t allergic to it but was trying to avoid what I thought had previously made me ill, just incase. There was also mushy peas and curry sauce available which my fellow diners said were good, but I just don’t like either, some people on the other tables had pie and that also looked really good but I couldn’t chance it. They had one of my favourites, treacle sponge, but I also avoided it because of my stomach and the journey back, while the others really enjoyed it and I drank my pot of tea like a proper Brit abroad. The whole bill for the 4 of us, including all the drinks, came to 500 lira (so less than £9 per person) and it was very good value for money and we were all stuffed!

After lunch I found that there were no pharmacies open in the area to buy more plasters as mine was letting the blood through still and was too big for a little finger. We did find a shoe shop which had some bargains and I bought a pair of sheepskin slippers and a pair of trainers for a total of just less than £15.
On the way home I was still ill and we had to stop off for me to use the services again – I was beginning to wonder if my allergy was actually travel sickness! Back home I had a quiet night between sofa and toilet but by 8pm I was so hungry that I had to make myself some beans on toast.
As I went to bed I saw that there was a post on Facebook showing that Thailand was now back to normal, with lots of people out drinking on the Khao San road, in Bangkok.

Photo credit at Fryer Tuck’s – Michaela Murray

Dalyan – 12th November

Dalyan – 12th November

We were going to have a last breakfast together on Friday 12th November but my parents had a surprise visit from the door fitting workmen who were back with doors that were the right length this time. The plan was for my parents to come to mine and then we would go for food but my mom messaged to say they were waiting for the workmen to finish and then they would leave. With my parents leaving Dalyan were my updates over the next few weeks were unlikely to contain as much going out and Bailey’s in them! Eventually my parents arrived at my place, we were surprisingly not hungover and we marked the end of their holiday with a visit to Jiks for our last lunch together. I had the prawn skewers with chips, mom had a sandwich and chips and Dad had chicken shish with with chips. It was all really tasty and, because of too much booze last night, only Dad had a beer.
This time when we said our goodbyes I wasn’t too emotional as I would be going back to the UK next month for a short visit. We were so lucky that we had all been able to go to Turkey which had been a risk we had been willing to take and it had paid off for us.

My parents had some of their left over washing that they brought to mine so I’d already got the first lot on because bad weather was meant to be due soon. As a treat I had a takeaway afternoon tea from Sara at River Terrace which I divided up and put some in the fridge for the rest of the weekend. I did have the sandwiches and a jam and cream scone with a cup of earl grey tea about 5pm which was so good and I thought that would be enough for the rest of the day. It wasn’t, so before I went out that night I had fish fingers and beans – I had really missed eating fish fingers!
It was music bingo night at Lukka bar so I joined Debbie (Darling) and Sarah who didn’t seem to mind that this fairweather friend hadn’t been sitting with them for the last 4 weeks – and Sarah’s canine companions seemed pleased to see me, too. Even though the nights were colder now there was the awning up to shelter us so it didn’t feel cold where we were sat. Katrina also joined us and I thought that her chicken casserole dinner looked and smelled fantastic, I must try that dish. I had a good time, I didn’t win but a couple of us were sweating, and it is a bonus that the wine is only 20 lira a glass on special for Friday nights. I did need to cut back on the spending, especially with the lira to pound rate almost halving my money, but at that discount it was totally worth having 3 glasses of red!