The Poppy Ball

A gorgeous sunny day again. It began well with my favourite breakfast of thick yoghurt with honey, golden figs and a crunch of muesli. Eaten on the terrace enjoying the sunshine and the views.

I spent the day by the pool – have to make the most of it, this time of year. Bob went down to the Big Men (always makes us laugh!) barbers for a shave and a haircut. It’s a great experience, a Turkish barbering – hot towels, head massage, unguents and colognes….. most enjoyable. And always less than £20. He came back looking very neat about the head.

Habibi and his men were working all day on the drive. They made huge progress with the paviers, almost out to the road now. It’s looking great. I will take pictures when they have finished. Very pleased so far.

In the evening we were going to the Poppy Ball with a group of friends. The Poppy Ball is one of the main black tie events amongst the ex pat community. It’s organised by the Royal British Legion as a fundraiser and it is very popular and always a sell out. Our friends, Pamela and Eddie, are extremely active workers for the RBL and we were lucky enough to be invited to be on their table, together with Deborah and David, Mike and Linda and our neighbours Alan and Lesley. It was great to have a chance to dress up. We haven’t done that since our crossing on the QM2 at the end of 2019, before covid interrupted such things.

The ball was held at the Kaya Palazzo hotel, a fabulous 5 star place which is generally thought to be the best hotel in this part of Cyprus. We had organised an Ozy taxi with Alan and Lesley and he came to pick us up at 630. My feet were already complaining about being crammed into posh shoes and I knew it was a matter of time before they came off! We were greeted with a basket of orchid blossoms for the ladies to pick from and then went downstairs to the ballroom antechamber where the drinks reception was being held. The tickets were £50 each and this included a drinks reception, a 3 course dinner, unlimited drinks all evening, and dancing to two acts – a female singer and a soul/rock band called The Soul Stuff. They were amazing.

Dinner began with the presentation of the Standards, the Last Post and the Royal Toast, always moving….. and there was also a charity auction with some very good donated items including a stay at the the Kaya Palazzo and a long weekend in Istanbul. There was a raffle – Bob won a cash prize. Towards the end it was announced that the evening had raised £1600 which was very good. The meal was good – smoked salmon and cream cheese to start, then a rolled chicken breast with spinach and asparagus. Dessert was a chocolate brownie and there was coffee and petit fours at the end. We haven’t danced so much in a long time. My shoes were off by then of course!!!!

Our taxi returned for us at 1130 and we really could have gone on for hours more. The band were really good. They sometimes play at a music club called The Soulist, in Alsancak but also in Istanbul and Ankara.. I hope they play at another event we go to.

The stars last night were lovely when we got home. I always try and photograph them and always fail. It was a lovely evening and we had the best time. Thanks to all the organisers and to Pamela for including us.

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