Dalyan – 11th to 13th March

Dalyan – 11th to 13th March

Friday 11th March started with the obligatory weigh-in and measurement taking. My weight had stayed the same this week, my thighs were now both the same size and were the biggest they had been in almost 2 years but my calves were still 1cm different in size.
I was having buttered toast for breakfast when the workmen turned up, earlier than expected, to continue with the ceilings. I read in the news that China was having a lot of Corona cases again, more here:
https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/international/20220311/china-daily-local-covid-infections-exceed-1000-as-symptomless-cases-spike/66124.html
I decided to go out on a bicycle ride to keep out of the way of the workmen who were making a right old mess. Bluey2 was super whizzy today, I enjoyed a little jaunt around all the back streets and a couple of the more main roads before getting peckish. For a late lunch I had chicken and spinach curry from out of the freezer, with steamed rice before getting ready to go out.
I’d been invited to John’s surprise birthday party, by his wife Andrea. I arrived at Bambi’s around 7.30pm and the place was pretty busy already. I sat with Penny and Phil who were just finishing off their jacket potatoes and I ordered a glass of red wine. There was a lovely buffet on and I wished I’d not already eaten curry but I had a couple of mezes with bread. It was a lovely night with lots of familiar faces in the warmth of the soba. Outside the temperature was very cold and I didn’t relish the walk home so when Penny and Phil were leaving, I felt like getting a lift home would be a good idea. I paid for my 2 wines, which this time were only 40 lira each, instead of 50, and left with Penny. Back home it was very cold as I watched a bit of TV and I had to put the heater on.



On Saturday 12th March I woke up to news that Quang Binh, the province where Captain Caveman lives, had 3271 new positive Corona cases yesterday. This could mean that the proposed resumption of international travel in 3 days time could be in danger of not happening. Obviously, I knew when I left Vietnam in September that it could be a year until I saw Captain Caveman but I hoped it wouldn’t be that long. If Vietnam reopens it could mean I would get a trip to see him, possibly in a couple of months or so. I ate my breakfast of buttered toast before getting ready for something new.
I had organised to attend a Yoga dance event to commemorate international Women’s Day at a place called Spectrum. The location is a stunning retreat almost on the beach road with lovely views. I’d not been before but it’s not far from our friend, Janet’s, house so Vanessa and I arranged to call for her on our way. I called for Vanessa and we cycled about 15 minutes to Janet’s and then on another 5 minutes on to Spectrum. This was the furthest Bluey2 had gone so far and she managed it easily. We were welcomed by Jo, and we waited awhile for everyone else to turn up while admiring the views. Once we got going the yoga dance class was nice, fairly easy to follow, and in Turkish, but the wind was blowing so we all felt cold. We did have some photos taken afterwards as a group and we even asked about some future classes as we were all interested in going along.
On the way back Vanessa and I called in to see Penny and Phil but only Phil was home as we were later than we thought we would be. We dropped our bikes off after that and arranged to meet back up for an afternoon shandy. At home I had some Turkish sausage with cheese rolls for lunch to line my stomach. Captain Caveman was out of the cave and on his way to the Chay Lap gala dinner as I walked round to meet Debbie (Darling), Sarah, Ann, Vanessa, and Rach at Jiks. We had a couple of drinks there, some people had food. I wasn’t going to go to Rehab bar with Vanessa but decided I would, Ann decided to join us and we met Matt, Mark and Kate up there. We had a couple of drinks and I wasn’t really in the mood for stopping out. I’d been chatting to Captain Caveman and his colleague’s wife (Emma) about applying for a visa to go to Vietnam. The idea was to go in the summer but to enter Vietnam you must have had a vaccine within the last 6 months. Emma couldn’t get another booster in England and so asked if I wanted to go earlier. Captain Caveman didn’t have any time off until 20th May so that would be my earliest, which I mentioned to the girls at Rehab.
I decided to leave, Ann came with me as she had only been coming for 1 drink and had her bicycle. She pushed her bike over the rubble and holes of bar street and I suggested we go to the safer path of the river route. I was talking about how a few of us had fallen over recently because of the road works when all of a sudden I tripped over some raised cobbles and hit the floor, really hard. Luckily, I put my hands down but I cut my chin and I was quite shook up. I wasn’t drunk as I’d only had a couple of wine and sodas, we weren’t far from Sofra bar so we went in there to wash my face and get tissues for the blood. While I was in the bathroom Ann ordered more wine. My chin wouldn’t stop bleeding so we got a couple of plasters from a friend of a friend and Ann slapped them on my chin.
Needless to say, we ended up staying out out and consumed too many wines before getting a taxi back to Ann’s.



I didn’t get up until 11.20am on Sunday 13th March and my double plastered chin really hurt. Ann was already up, had brought me some water and seemed surprisingly spritely, considering. It had been a late and messy night – I felt like crap. I walked down to Heybe’s before Ann and waited for her to arrive. We both ordered a fry up (mine without eggs or tomatoes). It seemed to take forever but Roy was already in having a beer so we chatted to him. When the food came I found it hard to eat because my chin and jaw were a bit swollen.
I went home after breakfast and took the plasters off for a look, my chin wasn’t too bad compared to how bloody it had seemed at the time. I did have bruises on my legs and a cut on my hand but I was lucky it wasn’t any worse.
After a nice hot shower, I got back in bed and alternated between watching Netflix and snoozing. China was in the Vietnamese news again, as Corona cases over there were increasing rapidly, more here:
https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/international/20220313/china-daily-local-symptomatic-covid-cases-more-than-triple/66147.html
Later, I got back up for beef stew with potato wedges for my Sunday dinner at home. The light swung and my water cooler sloshed about as I definitely felt a ripple or two from a small earthquake.
I messaged family and found out that there was a weekend away for my mom’s 70th birthday coming up, which I decided to invite myself to and started looking for a flight. As long as the decorations at my parents’ place in Dalyan were finished before I went, I would be able to fit it in. Flights to the UK via Istanbul or Antalya were cheap at the moment. My sister sent me the location and it looked good but it only slept 6 so maybe I’d have to take the couch!

Photo credit – Joanne Sparrow at Spectrum

Dalyan – 9th & 10th March

Dalyan – 9th & 10th March

On the morning of Wednesday 9th March, after a turkey ham sandwich for breakfast, I went round to my parents’ place to check on it. There was a leak above the neighbour’s fuse box which needed looking at and one in the upstairs bedroom. It was difficult to see why, without climbing out of the window and on to the roof, so I asked Mark if he would help me. He said I shouldn’t get on the roof as it wasn’t really safe but he managed to hang out of the window and get a zoomed in photo of the chimney stack wall which looked to be the issue. The photos and leak information collected, we decided to call to see Debbie (Darling) next door. The door was open so we sat on the couch and waited for her to come downstairs to surprise her. She had some workmen round so, while they sorted out a door, we had a beverage and chatted. Mark left to go to Rehab bar, as Wednesdays is pool afternoon, but I stayed with Deb and had a beer. After a while, we decided to go meet Vanessa and Kate at Rehab bar and I experienced another first in Dalyan. I had a ride on the back of Debbie (Darling)’s quad bike and I was a little bit apprehensive. It was pretty whizzy and she likes to go fast so we were at the bar in no time. Tayfur, the owner, poured us all white wines and some of us had soda with it. I only had a couple and then walked home with Vanessa and Matt. Bar street was still a mess as the road works progressed and we had to watch our step as we navigated our way. Back home, I made veggie egg fried rice for my dinner, ate strawberries for dessert and then watched something on Netflix. I had a video call with my parents to discuss their apartment and the leak, which didn’t look as bad as I thought it would.

I woke up on Thursday 10th March to a message from Leanne, at King Emlak, to say that the workmen were on their way to our place. They were coming to plaster and paint the cracks in the ceilings from when I had leaks during the heavy storms some weeks ago. I quickly showered and tidied up a little, trying to move things before the men started plastering. I had buttered toast for breakfast while noticing on Facebook that Dong Hoi, in Vietnam, had an increase in positive cases and they had started to shut down lots of establishments. At lunchtime I went to Zumba with Vanessa and really enjoyed it, afterwards we went to Jiks and had a bite to eat. I chose the white pizza and she had a tuna sandwich, I couldn’t manage all of my pizza so I took some away. In the afternoon I went to the bank, the stationers and the chemist. I noticed the exchange rate had now gone up to 19.5 lira to the pound.
Back home the workmen were still there, the place was a mess and I couldn’t take a post-zumba shower until pretty late in the day. That night I arranged to join Vanessa at Rehab bar, as Matt was joining the darts night. It was also Matt’s birthday and Vanessa and I inadvertently got put down to play darts. There were just a few others taking their chances on the dartboard; Alison, Paul, Terry, Ausaf and Mark. I was next to useless for the first half of mine and Vanessa’s game, even the cat was worried about getting hit by a stray dart. By some fluke I won our game, then partnered up with Paul for the doubles game, which we won. As it was Matt’s birthday we had the obligatory tequila shots then we played pool. It was a good night and I was pleased to see friends we hadn’t seen in a while. The night ended with me snaffling the remaining pizza when I got home and I hoped for a lazy morning tomorrow.

Dalyan – 8th March

Dalyan – 8th March

Having not gone to bed until 2am on Tuesday 8th March, I was tired when I woke up at 8am. Strangely, I also found myself fully clothed, including 2 scarves, in the spare room. It had been so cold out last night that my reasoning for being in the spare room was because it’s warmer. Today was international Women’s Day, I was looking forward to attending the Zumba Gold class at midday and was pleased to manage a sandwich beforehand. Captain Caveman was already on his way to The Villas in Phong Nha to meet our friend, Valerie, before heading to his briefing. He would be back in the cave tomorrow for another 4 days.
Zumba was full of energy and I really enjoyed it but I was then in a bit of a rush to have a shower and get changed before cycling to my next appointment. The singing group is held at the Merhaba cafe, by the Mijo hotel, and this was my first cycle in Dalyan traffic. I manoeuvred chasing stray dogs, overtook a tractor and a mobility cart as well as avoiding 2 lorries, all on the short route.
At singing, Sheila was on accordian and Richard on guitar, both were excellent musicians too. I sat between Peter and Nanny Kay and shared Nanny Kay’s book of over 200 songs. Kate was sat on the other end as we were both initiated in to the group. For the first half of the session I knew very few songs and, as no sheet music is used, I wasn’t able to sight read as I’d expected. A book was passed around to write song choices in but I didn’t choose any this time round, I preferred to go with the flow for my first time. Kate chose a couple of songs including ‘Top of the World’ which was a good one to join in on. Regardless of the song choices, I really enjoyed the experience, it was friendly and easy going so I was definitely up for going again. We said our goodbyes and Kate and I set off back towards town on our bicycles. The sun had gone in and it was pretty chilly so, as we got near to mine, she asked me to pick her up a jumper and meet her at Okyanus. I took a back road detour and when I got in to mine I had a message from Mark asking if I had his phone because he had lost it last night at the Wonky’s quiz. I grabbed my Christmas jumper and a Vietnamese scarf for Kate, popped my coat on and walked over to Okyanus. When I joined Mark, Andy, Kaye and another lady, called Jo, things got a bit confusing.
Kate wasn’t with the others at Okyanus, as I’d expected. She had decided that a jumper wouldn’t be warm enough and had cycled home to get her big coat. I also found that I had Mark’s phone in my bag which I must have picked up when he left it in the bar last night. I forced a beer down but didn’t drink all of it, I shared some with Kate when she arrived. It was getting chilly and looked like it might rain so we drank up then went to nearby Lukka bar. While we were there, the rain came down heavily and a sodden Debbie (Darling) had a bit of a to-do when Socks chased a neighbour’s chicken and killed it. She now had to pay the owner for the dead chicken and was at her wits end with her street dogs. I had planned on going to get changed for tonight’s event at Dalyance but I no longer had time and it was raining heavily again, anyway. I chatted to Jo, who was really lovely with a cute dog called Charlie. I even invited her to join us on a boat trip which Vanessa was organising for when our friends and family arrived. The new menus at Lukka bar were out and the prices had gone up again, Mehmet was telling us to stock up on meat as the prices in the supermarket and butchers were set to rise further this week. I took a photo of the menu as the Sunday dinner had gone up by 50 lira to 210 lira. At the exchange rate today this was only around £11 however, for people who are living here and using Turkish money they deposited at 7 lira to the pound, it felt more like £30!
Kate and I left the rest of the gang in Lukka and headed up to Dalyance in the rain. When I arrived almost everyone was already there as I picked up my vodka based complimentary welcome cocktail. Sonuç had set us up a table for 20 ladies and the place looked lovely. I managed to say hello to most people before I sat down on the end next to Ann and Nanny Kay. I’d assumed that Debbie (Darling) wouldn’t make it but she surprised us all by turning up with a bag of chocolate, one for everyone. We all ordered food and a few of the remaining ladies joined us about 8pm. The Pad Thai was a popular meal choice, I had the steak fajitas and they were delicious. The chicken quesadillas which Nanny Kay ordered looked great too and I thoroughly enjoyed our meal and chat. I met new ladies in Dalyan which was lovely, especially another couple of fellow Sheffielders, as well as getting to chat with some of the oldies. After the meal, some of us left to go to Lukka for a nightcap. Kate and I got chatting to Richard from the singing group about song favourites but we just had the one drink before calling it a night. It had been a long day, so by 11pm I was on my way home. Rach was so surprised that I wasn’t the last to leave that she took a photo for proof!

Here’s a short video which Sonuç made:
8/3 ladies night
https://fb.watch/bErhr4fdud/

Photo/video credit – Hotel Dalyance, Sonuç Tezcan, Debbie (Darling).

Dalyan – 7th March

Dalyan – 7th March

Rain stopped the work on my parents’ apartment on Monday 7th March and the pool at Captain Caveman’s Turkish apartment overflowed. I struggled to guess my wordle games this morning but eventually managed it. I tried a new one called Nerdle, which Kate had recommended to me, then I suggested it to Captain Caveman. He was now on his way back to Phong Nha, having been to visit Raj at Curry King in Tam Coc.

After being on my laptop until lunch time, I popped to Migros supermarket for some shopping, here’s what was in my basket:


Bread 3.00
1 simit 3.27
Pasta 3.64
Chocolate 7.12
Turkey slices 9.45
2 Bounties 9.74
Toastie loaf 10.95
6 eggs 13.98
Salami 14.72
Crisps 16.31
Chicken 46.30

Total spent 138.38 lira (£7.45)

Back home I had a simit with cheese spread and crisps for lunch, then strawberries with yoghurt and honey for afters.

As I had leftover Sunday dinner, I ate that and really enjoyed it for my evening meal, with a bit of broccoli from the freezer. Before I went out that night, I called to check my parents’ place was locked and I noticed that the gardener had been round. This was unusual as the weather had been awful and they don’t usual start cutting the grass until April. I took some photos so I could let Ma & Pa know about it and went to join Penny, Phil, John, Mark and Kate for more Monday Mayhem.

The specialist section of the Wonky’s quiz this week was James Bond, of which I knew very little about. Lucky for Penny and I, Kate had taken control of the whole thing. While Phil and John got bossed about, I just drank my wine and let them get on with it, until it got to the music round. By the end of the night, though, some of our team was a little inebriated and I had to resort to some cheering up tactics. I had to pull out the only thing I knew couldn’t fail to take one’s mind away from one’s problems! My secret skill is I can flip a considerable amount of beer mats with one hand. Mark didn’t believe I could do it, so I told him to video it! It had been a while, but my Dad had taught me well and, after steadily building them up one or two at a time, and numerous failed attempts, I managed it. By this time Mark had got bored of filming and, if I remember correctly, Kate was having a Bailey’s. As soon as filming stopped, the pressure was off and I managed to flip the 20 beer mats – Dad would have been proud!
Mark and Kate left by taxi, instead of cycling, and Penny kindly gave me a lift home. I had arranged to meet Kate at 2pm tomorrow as we were off to try something new.

1st attempt of the beer mat trick – video by Mark
4th attempt at the beer mat trick, 12 beer mats – video by Mark
7th attempt at the beer mat trick, 20 beer mats – video by Mark

Dalyan – 4th to 6th March

Dalyan – 4th to 6th March

I was not happy with the scales on the weekly weigh-in on Friday 4th March! I’d put 1Kg on. It was also disappointing that my legs had got slimmer, but not my waist!
After a bit of laptop time, I had a little cycle around the block and still didn’t know that Bluey2 had gears. Mark had agreed to help me move a chair at my parents’ place so he came over to meet me. I asked him about Bluey2 being sluggish and he showed me where the gears were and told me I need to pedal to change them. We cycled round the block to my parents’ apartment and I got the gears freed up a bit but still couldn’t work out what gear I’m in and there is no way of knowing. The chair legs had to come off and it be lifted above the bannister but we managed it. We tried to call in to visit Debbie (Darling) but she was either out or still in bed. She messaged once I’d got back home to say she was home so l cycled round for a visit before Zumba. The street dogs were causing a nuisance as their dad, Roy, was away and I saw the damage they had done from chewing anything useful.
I really enjoyed the Zumba class today and then had to rush off to a meeting.  I had arranged to meet Sonuç at Hotel Dalyance because I had decided to organise an event to celebrate international Women’s Day next week. I cycled there and we discussed a good deal to help us celebrate the evening with various women in Dalyan.
I finally ate something in the late afternoon, just an old favourite of beans on toast which I enjoyed. Quite a few of us decided we would book a table at Lukka bar for the music bingo night so I met Penny & Phil there earlier than the rest. I bought a bottle of wine and we had a nice chat before the others arrived (Vanessa & Matt, Kev & Janet, Mark & Kate, Sarah, Rachel). It was a great night with lots of laughs, fun music and plenty of dancing. There was even tequila shots involved and Penny bought sambuca shots too! Matt really gave the ball a right kick and ended the night dancing in the street, much to Vanessa’s amazement. 
When I got home I was hungry so I made mushroom and pesto pasta and then had an apple pie for dessert.

There is a weekly market in Dalyan so Vanessa and I had arranged to go together on Saturday 5th March. I called round to my parents’ apartment first to check that the painters were working as planned and that they had the keys for the patio doors if required. I messaged Dad with an update then went over to Vanessa’s. At the market I bought 6 potatoes and 4 onions for 12 lira (65p) from the first stall. At the next stall I bought 1 green pepper, 3 red peppers, 4 aubergines and a bag of mushrooms for 27.50 lira (£1.50). I needed some fruit so I splashed out and bought a punnet of strawberries for 40 lira (£2.16). With a full bag of fresh produce we wandered back to town and decided that a breakfast sandwich at Jiks would be a good idea. Vanessa and I had worked up quite a thirst but Jiks was the fullest I’d seen it this year. We bumped in to a few familiar faces and I got introduced to a lady from the singing group, who I had briefly met before. I had a bacon and mushroom sandwich with brown sauce and a couple of orange juices. In the afternoon a few mates went to play pool and have a natter down the pub but today I decided to give it a miss. The slow cooker came out and I put a bolognese in to cook for dinner. I decided to do some pickling as I had a lot of red cabbage in the fridge. I ate strawberries with natural yoghurt and honey for lunch. I had messages from Captain Caveman who had been to the Ukrainian embassy in Hanoi today. He’d gone with some Czech friends for a charity event to raise money for medical supplies in the Ukraine. He also sent me the recent electricity bill for here in Dalyan, it was 5 times that of the previous month and I’d hardly been in the apartment.
I ended up having an extra meal of Turkish cheese rolls, sausage, pickled cabbage, beetroot and gherkins. I had one chocolate spoon left from my birthday which I ate with strawberries.
My intention with the bolognese was to make a lasagne but I changed my mind and had some with a cheesy jacket potato instead. The rest I batched up for the fridge and freezer then tried to have an early night.
Unfortunately living near to the Jazz bar the inevitable weekend music noise prevented me from nodding off until the early hours.

I spent some time on Sunday 6th March organising the forthcoming International Women’s Day event. My original idea had been to do something during the day, as that is what we may have done when I was in Vietnam. Here in Dalyan it was a normal day so only the retirees and holiday makers would be available. I’d considered doing an afternoon at BC Spa but there were not many who could make it. I’d had quite a lot of input and some valuable suggestions on how to make the event more inclusive to all women in Dalyan too. Unfortunately, my lack of experience of celebrating this type of thing in Turkey along with the sensible approach made me decide a meal out and drinks with expat women would be about my limit.
In the Vietnamese news there was an update that China had their highest Corona cases in 2 years, more here:
https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/international/20220307/mainland-china-daily-local-covid-cases-at-2year-high/66051.html
At 2pm I had booked for me, Ann, Nanny Kay and Vanessa to have Sunday dinner at Lukka bar. We all had a soft drink to start with and I chose the beef dinner but with gravy on the side and no mashed potatoes. I really enjoyed mine and even took a tuppaware to put my leftovers in this week. At a cost of 160 lira (£8.60), not including a coke and a glass of red wine, it was a nice treat. The apple crumble with ice-cream for dessert is also good and none of that made it to a takeaway box.
Vanessa went home for an important family call but then came back over to mine. We managed to polish off a bottle of rosé wine while doing our Turkish homework, we are convinced our Turkish is much better when we have had a couple of wines! Later I decided to have more food and had pasta bolognese and then more strawberries.

Dalyan – 1st to 3rd March

Dalyan – 1st to 3rd March

I’d successfully survived 5 months of being in Turkey without Captain Caveman and my first month of working online. Tuesday 1st March started with the realisation that my internet was off. It needed renewing on the 28th February but I’d overlooked this so I trotted off to the Captain Net office to sort it out. I walked through the roadworks and noticed there was progress but it was still moving slowly. The lady at Captain Net saw I had some English money in my purse and asked if she could buy a £20 and a £10 from me for ‘her piggy bank’ and I agreed. The rate was 18.5 lira to the pound now and looking likely to go up again. Back home, with the internet back on, I read an amusing article on Facebook from Vietnam about having sex during Corona.
I hadn’t eaten breakfast so I had beans on toast for lunch while pondering my choices for dinner. That’s when I got the bad news; today was actually Pancake Day! I was confused, I had no idea why I had thought it was last week but felt pp certain I had read it somewhere. Never one to pass by an opportunity to eat pancakes, I whisked up a mixture and popped it in the fridge. I decided beef stew would go with it for dinner but I just had the one then decided to join friends for a cheeky vino.
I met Mark, Kate, Andy and Kaye at Lukka bar for a drink and Kate had brought me some Thai curry paste from her trip back to England. She worked out it would be easy enough to make here and set about sourcing some of the ingredients, such as lemongrass, from an App called Trendyol which a lot of people use over here. Kate, Kaye and I chatted while Mark and Andy played pool. The consensus with everyone, but Mark, was that it wouldn’t be a late one however, as can often be the case, that didn’t quite pan out. Kaye and Kate decided they were going home, I’d ordered a 2nd glass of wine, the blokes were playing pool and arm wrestling with Appo, the waiter. Mark insisted on Kate staying for another drink as he didn’t want to go home yet. I could see he was being daft so I offered to drink some of the bottle of wine he’d just ordered so they could leave sooner – I’m kind like that! It didn’t work and everyone went home, leaving Mark playing pool with the staff. It was after midnight when I failed to force-feed pancakes to my impromptu house guest, despite my best efforts to help sober him up.

On Wednesday 2nd March I woke up late and got ready for my Turkish class. I met Kate at Lukka, she had brought her blanket to crochet while I had my lesson then I stayed and had lunch while she had her lesson. I tried the chicken and mushroom penne and it was a really tasty and healthy sized portion. I chatted with Katrina and Abi who were having sweet and sour chicken, another dish I needed to try. When Kate finished her class she was heading up to Rehab bar and asked me to join her. The cleaner was at mine so I agreed, despite the heavy rain, the new road was starting to flood and by the time we got there we were soaking wet. I had a Turkish cider while we took off our layers and arranged wet belongings in front of the heater. The blokes were playing pool, as they do on a Saturday afternoon, and there was some banter going on. One bloke was in trouble with his wife because he’d bought cucumbers instead of courgettes and had to traipse back out in the pouring rain to get the right vegetables.
My Sheffield friends, Vanessa and Matt, had flown from England to Antalya and were currently on a coach to Ortaca. We were all looking forward to them being back in Dalyan about 5.30pm so, after pool, we hung about in Rehab bar for them to arrive. When they arrived we all had hugs (get the LFTs at the ready) and it was great to see them. More drinks followed but I still limited it to just the 3 ciders as I didn’t want to go mad. Unfortunately, we experienced a new first in Dalyan and had a bad meal. We ordered a takeaway, to eat in Rehab bar, which was pretty terrible but we were all hungry. Vanessa ordered a pide which looked like burnt cheese on toast, Matt and Mark ate their’s without complaint, Kate and I had a chicken burger each and shared chips – the chicken burgers were grey inside. We still ate it all though, but made a note not to have another takeaway from the burger place next door to Rodrigo’s bar. It was definitely the worst meal I’ve had since I’ve been here. I walked home with Vanessa and Matt and was home by 9pm to a newly cleaned apartment and an early night.

I had cornflakes for breakfast on Thursday 3rd March then did a bit of work before going to meet Ann at Porta Dalya. As I was leaving the house, Penny called but I didn’t answer it because I didn’t want to be late.
When I arrived, Ann had already got a coffee and I ordered a diet coke. When our lunch arrived Ann had underestimated the spicy arrabbiata sauce on her pasta and had to get some yoghurt. I stuck with the chicken and mushroom Alfredo which is always a winner. We had 1 glass of wine each and then we were sensible and went home.
I called Penny back and she was at Lukka bar, my loaned bicycle was ready to pick up, so I went to meet her. When I arrived there was quite a crowd sat drinking in the sun. I ordered a cider but then my phone rang, it was Captain Caveman so I went back to the apartment so we could chat. He had an invitation for me! Vietnam had been promising to open to international arrivals and the date was set for 15th March. He wanted to know if I wanted to come to visit sometime in May or June for a few weeks and, of course, I said yes! His colleague has a wife who was keen to visit too, so Captain Caveman put us in touch to discuss travelling out there together. He sent me his schedule up to July and he’d got some tours back-to-back to accommodate gaps in which I would be able to visit. I went back to the bar feeling delighted that I would be getting to see my other half within the next 3 months. I drank my cider with a big smile on my face, then Penny drove me to her villa to pick up the bicycle. I cycled it back to Lukka not knowing it had gears so found it was like peddling through treacle. It certainly warmed me up and I was once again, mobile! Having got a bit of a sweat on from cycling, I ordered another cider, not realising I had missed an upsetting incident. Debbie (Darling)’s street dogs, Socks and Brin, had gone on a cat chase with a terrible result, Socks was in the dog house and tied up at the bar, Debbie was upset. Sheila arrived next and we got chatting about music and her accordian playing. She is part of a singing group in Dalyan, which Kate and I got invited to and we agreed to give it a try next week. I didn’t stay much longer and went home for a good home cooked dinner of stew, Yorkshire pudding and broccoli.
Before bed, I checked the cost of flights to Vietnam, there were no direct ones as yet but the ones via Singapore Airlines were £581 return. I was so excited to perhaps be able to plan to see Captain Caveman, that it took me a long time to get to sleep!

Dalyan – 28th February

Dalyan – 28th February

So much for getting lots of sleep! I finally got to sleep at 2am on Monday 28th February and woke up quite early. I had cornflakes for breakfast and spent the morning on my laptop. Captain Caveman had gone in to the cave today so was due out on Thursday afternoon, he would be getting the overnight train to Hanoi that night. Unfortunately Tatas had to work and wouldn’t be joining the trip, afterall, which was a shame.
In the afternoon I popped to Migros supermarket and bought the following:

1 Bounty 6.50
Crisps 7.38
2 Probiotic drinks 11.14
2 chicken breasts 30.29
Toilet rolls 64.25

Total spent 119.56 lira (£6.46)

A couple of mates were in Jiks as I came out of the supermarket so I went over to join them. I had a drink with them and then we decided we would go to Heybe’s for another drink. We bumped in to Gaz who gave us a lift round with all our shopping. Obviously, it then turned in to a Mental Monday again for several reasons. It was my first time of dancing to ‘Build me up Buttercup’ by the Foundations at 5pm on a Monday.
We all went home after that but had forgotten about Sarah, who was on her way to meet us all at Jiks. I did the decent thing and popped my shopping home before going to meet her and Rachel. I’d just finished a wine and was about to go home when I got a message from Penny asking where I was. Apparently, Mark and I had promised to attend the Wonky’s Monday night quiz but we had forgotten. I tootled over to Wonky’s in time to join Penny, Phil and John who had already started the quiz. Tom Cree is the quiz master and he’s very good, each week one of the rounds has a specialist subject. This week the specialist topic was the Titanic of which I didn’t know too many and I was better at the music questions. It ended up a late and boozy one but I was astonished to find that we came 2nd, which was a great result!
When I got home I had a sandwich and couldn’t work out why there was no Internet.

Dalyan & Ortaca – 26th & 27th February

Dalyan & Ortaca – 26th & 27th February

I was feeling slightly delicate when I woke up rather early on Saturday 26th February. I came downstairs and realised I had eaten burnt sausage casserole last night and it accounted for why my stomach was a bit off. The slow cooker was certainly going to need a good scrubbing and I may even need a chisel. I couldn’t face tackling it so I filled it with hot water and went out. Kitler, the cat, was waiting for me and wanted to follow me everywhere.
Leanne picked me up at noon and we went to Ortaca, with her daughter, to try a new eatery. Next door to Pier Gusto is a kumpir potato place which Leanne had recommended. It has a play area too so the small child was kept entertained. Leanne and I ordered slightly different fillings on our baked potatoes, both of which were really good and a reasonable cost too. I really enjoyed the food then, as the weather was nice, we had a walk to the park which was busy with locals. My stomach was still dodgy for the first time in ages, just typical when I have a car journey. Leanne’s daughter really enjoyed the park and even mastered walking up the big slide without going up the steps, which made me nervous and her laugh! After fun at the park we headed to Külah for ice creams, although my stomach isn’t usually a fan of ice-cream. When we arrived, and I saw all the flavours, I had to have a scoop of ‘çarkıfelek’ – I love passion fruit and it was a new Turkish word I had learned. I also got to taste the caramel, which is blue, as well as Leanne’s choice of lemon – they were all excellent.
When I got home I made mushroom and pesto pasta for dinner and I decided I would also make chicken fajitas. I had leftover yoghurt and chicken that needed using so I had 2 meals because I felt I needed the carbs. I watched TV in the evening and planned to have a rest day tomorrow.

My first job on Sunday 27th February was to tackle the burnt slow cooker! I made a note to self never to leave it on low for 9 hours again, after it took me ages to get it clean. It was raining so I didn’t go out and had decided to have a relaxing day at home
I had already decided against Sunday dinner this week as I’d got pasta and fajitas to eat up. I restarted doing the word game Quordle, as I had not done it for a few days, and I did some writing then watched Netflix. I tried Worldle, country names, for the first time and got it in 1 because it was Ukraine. I had a video call with Captain Caveman then made pizza, Slimming World style. It had BBQ sauce, chicken, cheese, peppers and mushroom on it and it was nice. I finished off my evening with a much needed early night. This coming week was set to be a busy one and I was looking forward to one of my very good friends returning to Dalyan!

Dalyan – 25th February

Dalyan – 25th February

Friday 25th February has got to have been one of my favourite days this year, so far!
I was up very early so that I could speak to Captain Caveman and get the sausage casserole in the slow cooker before my day trip. I did my weekly weigh-in and wasn’t as disappointed as I thought I’d be. I had lost just 0.5kg and my leg measurements had increased a little bit. Zumba was definitely helping with my legs and today I would arrange with Penny when I could pick up my new bicycle. I went to the bank and the shop before coming back to pack a bag with the drinks, plus some popcorn and biscuits – I took my own Earl Grey tea bags too. I saw that Kitler, the cat who looks like Hitler, had returned to the Fire Opal complex and was following me about begging for attention. In the news there was a mention of bootleg booze in our province of Muğla, more here:
https://www.dailysabah.com/turkey/investigations/antiaircraft-bullet-seized-in-bootleg-alcohol-op-in-turkeys-mugla
Just before I left for my day trip I got a message from Captain Caveman to say he couldn’t video call as he was out with Tatas at my favourite Phong Nha eatery, East Hill. They were already on lunch time and having BBQ chicken with sticky rice – my favourite! He sent me photos and told me that Tatas was joining him on a holiday to Hanoi next week. Then I had to go to get on the boat and I wouldn’t have WiFi so I would speak to him tomorrow perhaps.
As I walked to the boat I met with Penny and Phil who were fussing some street dogs along the way and had their stash of booze with them. As we got to the boat outside Okyanus, they were resurfacing the terrace there and concreting it. It was windy and sunny but looking like we had picked a good day for the boat trip.

At 11am we were ready to start our boat trip. Penny and Phil had brought pastries and croissants for everyone’s breakfast, I just had a cup of Earl Grey tea because I didn’t want to risk a bad stomach and ruin the day. Ann had arrived and brought sparkling wine for her tipple, unfortunately Debbie (Darling) had already rocked the boat by deciding she wasn’t coming and a couple of others were unable to make it. After picking up Mark on the way we went out to sea, the water was fairly choppy and the sun was shining as we headed for Ekincik Bay. We were the only boat out that we saw and the water looked so clear and inviting. Ann and I didn’t have an alcoholic drink until after midday (we were pacing ourselves) and I started on the white wine.
We sat at the front of the boat in the sun, chatting and drinking, while Turgay cooked up a delicious lunch. I’d taken a bottle of red wine which I’d be given by my aunty and uncle in England. It was a lovely Primitivo which Mark and I shared with our meal. The food was fantastic, as always, but after eating Turgay was keen to have a swim. He said he’d been swimming a few days ago and that the water temperature was cold but not too cold to swim. No one had brought their swimmers except for Turgay so he jumped in off the top of the boat. I managed to get up the ladder on to the top of the boat for the first time since my leg injury and was pleased with that. In the 5 months I’ve been here I’ve not yet been in the sea because of the cyst on my shoulder and my leg so I was keen to get in. I had suitable enough underwear on to pass for a bikini (if anything it covered more than my bikini did) so I decided to go for it. I should have realised, when only Turgay thought this was a good idea, that it was going to be freezing! I went down the steps and my legs were cold but once I was half way in I just had to go for it – there was definitely an expletive! If I had to guess I would say the water temperature was around 16°C and my legs were pretty numb. It was definitely fresh and I was pleased to find I could do the steps a lot better than I had been able to before. Ann, who looked like she was feeling the cold for me, wrapped me in the towels and I made my way to the front of the boat where there was sun and a wine waiting for me.

Before sunset I was back in my leggings as we headed to the beach to get ready to watch the sun go down. I wanted to walk on the beach to take photos and have a paddle so I dragged Ann and Mark with me. While Mark and I headed straight for the sea, Ann took herself off along the beach to sit on a wooden post and admire the view. The sea was actually quite warm and we paddled and drank our drinks while watching the sunset. We went back to the boat and topped up with more drinks as we returned to Dalyan.

It was almost 7pm when we returned to Dalyan. We discovered when we docked that we still had almost a bottle of wine left between us so we stayed on the boat to finish it off. We drank, danced and sang until gone 8pm then made our way off the boat. Ann was being sensible and decided to go straight home, Penny and Phil got a taxi home, Mark was intent on going to Sofra bar and I decided I needed a shower and bed! I remembered to turn off my sausage casserole in the slow cooker which was looking rather well cooked. I’d forgotten it was Friday night bingo at Lukka bar so I decided to go to that with Mark and Turgay. There was dancing and I threw myself in to that with Mehmet, Annie and Sara. As far as I recall we left there about 1am and I had the bright idea that a sausage casserole supper would be a good idea!

Dalyan – 23rd & 24th February

Dalyan – 23rd & 24th February

My Turkish class on Wednesday 23rd February was a really good one and now we had started to learn a lot more, some of which was going in and other bits I kept forgetting. I had a cup of tea during the class but I had not had breakfast so for lunch I had sausages and pancakes at home. I still had no clue that yesterday hadn’t been Pancake Day and I was cooking sausages for a casserole anyway. Unfortunately, as is usual with sausage, I got a bad stomach shortly afterwards which was bad timing as I had an engagement to get to.
I met Debbie (Darling) and Ann in Jiks at 4pm as arranged and they had a couple of wines. I had 2 ciders and noted that the service in Jiks today was a bit shoddy but we still ordered a couple of pizzas to share. Turgay joined us for one drink and Debbie (Darling) suggested we plan a boat trip for Friday. It would be the first one this year and I was definitely up for it. As we were eating pizza I got a message from John who was at Bambi’s with his wife, Andrea, and Mark. They wondered if I’d like to join them for drinks and so the 3 of us went over there about an hour later. Sarah was still working so we messaged to say to come there when she finished and we had another wine. Jacket potatoes were in the oven and when they were served to our friends they looked fantastic. They were massive and had various toppings – I tried a bit and was pleasantly surprised. Having introduced Ann to John and Andrea I left them chatting, to go looking for my ring which I’d lost – it had been a cold night so must have slipped off my hand. Sarah arrived and asked me to go to another table as she had an urgent HR work issue she needed to run by me. Obviously, I gave her brilliant advice, after consuming 2 ciders and 3 wines. It was a lively evening and I finally found my ring in my clothing so I was pleased about that. I walked home with Ann, it was raining heavily and by the time we got to mine we were soaked.

On Thursday 24th February I got up early and cracked on with jobs before lunch time. I didn’t have any breakfast and arrived for Zumba at noon, the class went well and I really enjoyed it, back home I had a shower and some buttered toast for lunch. I was meant to be meeting friends at 1.30pm to get a lift to the beach. It was to celebrate a birthday and we were going to be taking food and drink for a party on Iztuzu beach. I decided I would meet them in town when they got back as a work man had popped by and I wanted to point out the bits that needed fixing.
I was about to get ready to go out when the doorbell went, it was Mark, he had been to the barbers, then to collect one of his bikes from whichever bar he left it at last night, and wondered if I fancied a drink and some food at Tez bar. He had beer, I had red wine (by the glass) and we were chatting about the boat trip tomorrow, which Debbie had also invited Mark on. Penny & Phil also had the same idea to go to Tez bar so we sat with them outside for a couple of drinks.
Just as our food was served, the rain came and a thunderstorm started but we weren’t deterred. We moved to a table nearer the bar, which was undercover, but didn’t go inside to eat. I had a chicken shish, which was very good, and Mark had a nice spaghetti bolognese. We mentioned to Penny and Phil about the boat trip and Turgay, the boat Captain, came by to discuss food requirements. Penny and Phil decided they would also join the boat trip tomorrow so I let Debbie (Darling) know and an arrangement to meet at 11am was made. Penny was getting chilly so they left us to have 1 more drink, and we got a new friend who wanted to kiss Mark. Debbie (Darling) has taken in a couple of street dogs and Brin, the youngest dog, had come to join us. She is a beautiful dog and kept trying to get on Mark’s lap and lick his face. After food and 3 drinks it was time to go home, unfortunately for Mark he had to cycle back in a storm, while I only had to pop round the corner. We hoped the weather would be ok for our boat trip but decided it would definitely be too cold to swim.

Dalyan – 21st & 22nd February

Dalyan – 21st & 22nd February

It was time to get my next vaccine on Monday 21st February and my appointment was 10am. On waking, I read the news that Vietnam will open to international tourists on 15th March and visitors can get a 30 day visa, more here:
https://vietnaminsider.vn/everything-to-know-about-getting-e-visa-for-vietnam/
Vietnam had also put a price cap on Covid tests.
Sarah called for me and we walked to the local clinic where we had a short wait in the Monday morning queue. Once inside, Sarah got her booster but I was told to wait until March even though I’d had my last one in November. On the way back Sarah had work issues to prattle on about so we decided to go to Jiks for breakfast. When we got there it was closed so we went to Dal for a drink. That was also closed but the beauty salon told us to wait 5 minutes for the owner to come. Sarah had to wait for her coffee as the machine wasn’t on but I got my 20 lira hibiscus tea first. Back home I had buttered toast for breakfast and popped a beef bourguignon in the slow cooker. Later that afternoon I went to get some potatoes to go with dinner, only to find that the quality of potatoes in 4 different shops was really bad. I decided I would have to forgo the potatoes and walked back home along the river. I noted the price of taxis at the rank as, they too, had gone up again recently. As I got to Tez bar I saw Penny and Phil having a drink so I joined them for a wine and a chat. Before I’d finished my first wine, Mark arrived to collect his bag from the bar and joined us for a drink. Predictably, we got chatting about how I didn’t have a bicycle and that I was missing Bluey. Penny told me they had a spare pink bike, not dissimilar to Bluey, which I could borrow. Mark let me have a go on his electric bicycle, I only went round the block on it but it was super fast with the electric on and very easy to ride.
As Mondays tend to turn in to ‘one of those days’ for me, this one was no different. The 4 of us went back to mine for beef bourguignon, having been given 4 potatoes from Tez. Phil picked up the white wine for them and I already had 2 bottles of red wine in the house. We had a good laugh, I attempted Yorkshire puddings, forgot about the potatoes and the night went on until 1am. I showed Penny and Phil round the apartment and mentioned about my bracing and slats on the bed in the main bedroom being broken. Mark and Phil had the mattress up and were looking at what needed fixing. Mark said he would leave his bike here and come back with his tools to fix it for me, tomorrow. We had to call Gürkan, the taxi driver, to take the 3 of them home and we were all very merry but I had the promise of a loan of a bicycle.

For some unknown reason I thought it was Pancake Day on Tuesday 22nd February! I woke up with an empty but messy apartment and was feeling slightly delicate. In the kitchen there was evidence of how much we had drunk when we got back to mine as well as every pot in the house having been used. I made myself a pancake with lemon and honey, had a cup of Earl Grey tea then got ready for some exercise. Zumba Gold with Maria was at noon, in the upstairs room above the gym and, this week, I managed to do most of it in time to the music.
In the afternoon Mark came to collect his bicycle, he brought a battery for the clock which he had taken down to fix. We took the mattress off the big bed and he fixed the frame that was broken – it still needed something doing to the brace but would be good enough to hold. As it was ‘Pancake Day’ I made spinach and cheese filled pancakes for dinner before going out. Mark and I went to Lukka bar and, although I wasn’t going to drink alcohol today, we shared a bottle of red wine. It wasn’t a late one though and Mark cycled home at a reasonable hour.

Dalyan – 18th to 20th February

Dalyan – 18th to 20th February

I had more grapefruit for breakfast on Friday 18th February and I had invited Ann over tonight for curry. I got on with making that and had more Baba Ghanoush with bread for lunch. It was my weekly weigh-in day and I had put on 1kg which was disappointing, but not surprising.
When Ann arrived at about 6pm I already had a beer on the go but she brought round 2 bottles of white wine and I’d already bought 1. She also bought me an ornament for the apartment which was very thoughtful. We decided to go to Lukka bar for just 1 drink and we did just that and came back so that we could eat chicken curry. The food turned out well and we had a good night, listening to music and even dancing. At one point we both managed to do a plank for at least 30 seconds! Ann couldn’t stay over because of the dogs and left about midnight, having had a great night. It made me appreciate not having any neighbours so we could have the music loud and sing.

I finally got round to opening the plum jam I bought in Fethiye before Christmas on Saturday 19th February. I had it on toast for my breakfast and it was really good with massive pieces of plums in. The spinach I had taken out of the freezer, in an attempt to make Saag Aloo yesterday, had finally defrosted so I made it today instead. I had managed to find most of the ingredients that I needed here but because I can’t eat chillies, I left them out. The curry that night was good but I didn’t eat too much of it – there was still some leftover too. I had a couple of glasses of white wine and a relatively early night, despite the noise of the Jazz bar keeping me awake.

I was pleased to speak to Captain Caveman on Sunday 20th February at 9.30am. We used the background changing function on the phones which looks as if you are somewhere else. I showed Captain Caveman that you could do this with a photo or video from your own phone. We were definitely missing each other now and this week would mark 5 months of us living in different countries. It wasn’t the longest we had spent apart in the 10 years together, but it was still hard and there was another 6 months to go, if we stuck to the plan. Captain Caveman had a week off coming up so he had planned to go to Hanoi – the trains had recently recommenced since they stopped due to the pandemic. I had toast with plum jam for breakfast and went shopping to Migros and A101 in the afternoon. Here’s what I bought and the prices in lira:

A101 Supermarket

3 onions 1.64
2 soda waters 3.80
3 red peppers 8.35
Toothpaste 22.90
White cheese 25.20

Total spent 61.89 lira (£3.32)

Migros Supermarket

Cornflakes 9.30
Quark 9.30
Tomato paste 10.24
Turkish salami 13.04
1 litre milk 14.91
500g chicken 20.22
500g minced beef 35.25
Red cheddar 46.71

Total spent 158.97 lira (£8.52)

Although the prices in English seemed cheap because of the current exchange rate, I was still using Turkish money that had been deposited at almost a third of the rate so my shopping today had cost me more like £36!

I wasn’t hungry so I didn’t have lunch but I had yet more chicken curry and Saag Aloo left for my dinner. I even warmed up some lavaş bread to have with it.
I was about to start my 3rd week of being busy so I got on with a couple of tasks to make it easier for time off in the week if I needed it. It was a great weekend, mainly spent at home instead of in the pub, for a change! The rest of the curry went in the freezer as I think I might have eaten enough of it for now.

Dalyan – 16th & 17th February

Dalyan – 16th & 17th February

My Turkish class on Wednesday 16th February was great and I really enjoyed it. After I finished the class, I was waiting for Debbie (Darling), as arranged, to go to the doctor’s for our booster vaccines. I’d also arranged to meet Sabine and Ray who were selling citrus fruit for charity and the time slightly overlapped. Debbie (Darling) didn’t turn up and I’d already been playing lightsabers with Katrina’s child, for too long. I went without her, but at the Doctor’s they had ran out of Pfizer vaccines and told me to come back next week. I headed back along the river to meet Sabine and Ray at River Terrace for a drink in the sunshine by the river. I managed just 2 diet cokes and a really good chat with my friends. Katrina joined us and I took home a kilogram each of oranges, grapefruit and lemons for 10 lira (54p) which was an absolute bargain!
That night I tackled the mystery meal which happened to be chicken chasseur so I was lucky to have it with rice. I had the carrot cake from Sara for pudding and one of the oranges I bought earlier, both were great.

I started out with good intentions on Thursday 17th February and had half a grapefruit for breakfast. It was so sweet and juicy and I was glad I’d bought them. Today the weather was looking good so I went to Migros supermarket and had planned for another evening at home.
My shopping bag consisted of:

2 onions 0.79
Bread 3.00
Caramac chocolate 9.30
Cumin seeds 11.12
Curry powder 11.92
Turmeric 12.06
Hummus 15.05
1 pack of jasmine rice 16.74
2 bags of crisps 17.50
650g natural yoghurt 20.99
1 packet of wraps 23.50
Dustpan and brush 32.96

Total spent 174.93 lira (£9.50)

I had a macaroon for lunch and tried to crack on with some emails, only to find that an email wouldn’t send and I needed it to. I decided I would nip to Lukka bar and try to send my email from there. When I arrived some of the pool lads were having a game so I went over to say hello. I ended up having a red wine while I sorted out my admin and watched the pool match. It turned in to a late night with a few glasses of red wine and a snack of Baba Ghanoush at gone midnight!

Dalyan – 14th & 15th February

Dalyan – 14th & 15th February

I’d stayed up late watching Netflix the previous night so I didn’t wake up in time for a chat with Captain Caveman on Monday 14th February. It was Valentine’s day but, obviously, we wouldn’t be celebrating it together. I got a message from Tatas wishing me a Happy Valentine’s Day though, which was nice. I didn’t bother with breakfast and was making pasta bolognese when Captain Caveman called, it was already early evening in Vietnam. We talked about the possibility of me going back to Vietnam for a visit this summer, if the visa and tourism opportunity allows, but it looked likely that the visa would be 30 days maximum. There was also no way that Captain Caveman could take any time off and would probably be working 22 days out of 30, no matter when I went. After my lunch I walked to my parents’ to take more photos of what needed to be painted and look for a missing patio door key. I found it in a box of freezer bags in one of several drawers I searched through. I started the word game Quordle which is more difficult than Wordle but good and I’m now getting better at Wordle. In the afternoon Sara, from River Terrace, popped round with some Valentine’s Day treats; chocolate truffles, chocolate brownies, chocolate covered strawberries and a slice of carrot cake. As I wouldn’t be seeing my partner to celebrate Valentine’s Day I had an exciting evening planned with the girls instead.
Finally we were getting the chance to go to Yolo, a restaurant near to the petrol station on Atatürk Boulevard. I’d arranged for us to go on a ‘Galentine’s’ night out, with the intention of spending Valentine’s Day with the ‘gals’ instead of ‘absent’ men. Ann came over to mine just as Sara was leaving and she had one of the chocolate truffles with me – they were very good. We went to Jiks to meet Debbie (Darling) before we met Nanny Kay, Sarah and her friend, Rachel, at the restaurant. Yolo was busy and we hadn’t booked, I’d niavely thought there was no need to book but we managed to get a table for the 6 of us. The wine was a whopping 240 lira (£12.95) a bottle and the first white that was tried wasn’t good but we got lots of free mezes. Nanny Kay and I splashed out and shared a bottle of red wine and, I ate my pepper steak with jacket potato and salad. My steak at Yolo was excellent but it’s definitely not the cheapest place to eat. After we finished eating, the musician put the volume up and Yasemin, the waitress from Lukka bar, came over to get everyone up dancing. It was a great night but we left relatively early as Nanny Kay’s taxi had arrived and Ann was cycling home.

I woke up early on Tuesday 15th February to news that my Zumba class was cancelled this week. Three people had tested positive for Corona so we were unable to meet and anyone with symptoms was asked to do a lateral flow test.
I read in the news an article pondering if Vietnam will open up for tourists, more here:
https://vietnamnews.vn/society/1155051/viet-nam-could-fully-reopen-international-tourism-from-mid-march.html
For breakfast I had chocolate covered strawberries, I took out a mystery frozen meal for tonight, then got ready for my lunch appointment with a new friend. We decided to meet at what used to be called Iz cafe and has now changed to Velvet cafe after it was Moto Lee for a while. We spent several hours there and ate a tasty lunch at a very reasonable cost. I had chicken shish, my friend had meatballs, both with chips, rice and side salad plus drinks for a total of 176 lira (£9.50). We only left as I needed to pick up my macaroons from Lukka bar, which Louise had left there. When I arrived I sat with Debbie (Darling) and Sue who were enjoying an afternoon beverage or two. I picked up my macaroons and Louise had given me a piece of home made cheesecake to try. I dropped them off home and rejoined Debbie (Darling), Sue, Sarah and Fiona at Tez bar. A little later Mark and Kate joined us and we ended up all having a good laugh. When I got home it was gone 8pm and I’d had 3 beers, I didn’t really fancy the mystery freezer food so I had the cheesecake for my dinner – it was very nice. Later I had a macaroon, which was delightful then some roasted chestnuts and I had an early night.

Dalyan – 11th to 13th February

Dalyan – 11th to 13th February

On Friday 11th February, it was about 9.30am when I opened my eyes and remembered I had gone back to Ann’s house with her and stayed there. Bendy, her dog, was in the bed under the covers and came to give me a Good Morning kiss. As I walked home, the sun was out and I was really hot in all my winter evening layers. King Emlak sent a man round to have another look at the ceiling where the leaks had been and then I had to go to meet someone at my parents’ place for another quote for the decorating. I was quite hungover and hot, I saw Debbie (Darling) and had a chat then I went home for a shower and some cornflakes for lunch.
I was needing a night in but I’d already agreed to meet at Hotel Dalyance for Louise’s birthday drinks and cake. Louise, who makes amazing birthday cakes, had made her own in the design of a turtle and it was amazing. I had just 2 cokes as I couldn’t stomach any booze today. I got chatting to quite a few people but by 10pm I needed to go home to bed. Sonuç was working there and was encouraging me to ‘borrow’ Sarah’s bicycle to get home quicker but I couldn’t even get my leg over to get on it properly. I had a booze-free, early night because tomorrow I had big plans which I didn’t want to cancel.

I didn’t have breakfast on Saturday 12th February as I got up late and needed to get to the weekly market. I met Ann there and I bought mushrooms, carrots, chestnuts, cauliflower and red cabbage for a total of 75 lira (£4). In the afternoon I was meeting a friend for lunch and had already set off to go but she messaged to cancel. I didn’t get it until I’d already walked to the other end of town. I saw Mark’s bicycle outside Rehab and went in to say hello to him and the owner. I had a cup of tea as I was trying to cut down a bit on the booze. Mark was meeting the rest of the pool lads and some of the wives were stopping by later so I had a chat with a few of them. I caved and had 1 beer but then I headed home only to realise there was a planned power outage until 5pm. I sat for a while and chatted to Abi outside Maizie Moo, in the sun, then went home for some much needed food – a cheese and salami toastie.
I was meant to be going out to Sofra bar but I decided I needed a bit of a rest. The toastie had not agreed with my stomach so I cancelled going out, got some lounge wear on, then later I had a spaghetti bolognese for dinner. I stayed up until 1am because of the Jazz bar noise and I even had a midnight snack of chestnuts, which were so good.

The local Dalyan football team were playing at home on Sunday 13th February and I’d been invited by friends to join them. If Captain Caveman was here, he would be going as he loves to support Dalyanspor – I’m not a fan of football. I had arranged to spend my Sunday in a leisurely way, seeing friends and relaxing. After buttered toast for breakfast I had a wander around Dalyan as it was sunny and I needed some exercise. I bumped in to friends along the way and called in to see a couple of other friends as I passed their houses. I was meant to have been going to Sunday dinner at Lukka bar with Sarah but had cancelled when I didn’t feel too well yesterday. I walked to Ann’s and we had a glass of wine outside in her conservatory and fussed the dogs. Ann had cooked a lovely roast chicken Sunday dinner with Yorkshire puddings and my favourite cauliflower cheese.
We were sensible today, limited only to one glass of wine to be healthier, then I walked home before dark. In the evening I watched something on TV, put the washing on and made popcorn, using a small bowl as a replacement for the missing lid.
It was a nice relaxed weekend with a sensible amount of alcohol, less calories consumed and some exercise.