Transitioning to Autumn

We had another big storm on Saturday – it woke us up at about 7am. We had to jump right up and rush downstairs because we’d put all the cushions back out on the terrace and they would have been soaked. The rain was extremely heavy and there were crashes of thunder and lightning. These sharp storms often come at this time of year as the summer finally gives way to autumn. It kept up the deluge till about 3pm and then the sun came back out and has remained out ever since. It’s lovely weather since – 25C again today.

Saturday night we went to our friends’ house in Lapta – Pamela and Eddie – for dinner. We had a good catchup, and met another couple, Jules and John, who were very good company too. On Sunday, we drove out east of Kyrenia to pick up a new kitchen bin. We wanted a Brabantia bin like we have at home and have been looking for them here with no success. I’d placed an enquiry on one of the North Cyprus Facebook groups and been given some stockists but also the offer of a bin, hardly used, in exchange for 500tl to an animal charity. We met the lady who was selling the bin at a garden centre in Tatlisu and were delighted to find it in absolutely perfect condition and jut the size we wanted. Frankly, it’s a total bargain. Looks much better in our kitchen than the old one and is more functional too. It was a nice garden centre. I had a mooch around and bought 3 flowering plants to go in the long planter in front of our main doors.

Last year we helped Pamela pick some of their olive crop which was very interesting to do – you use little rakes to rake the trees and the olives fall onto cloths spread under the tree. Much harder work than it looks but so worth while. We went along to the community olive press in Karsyaka with her and watched the whole process. She got about 25l of first press oil and very kindly gave us 5l. It has been settling in our store for a year and we have begun to decant it into 1l bottles and use it. So far it is just delicious. We are very much hoping our olive tree does survive the summer drought and in a few years we have our own crop to harvest.

Today I had the first in my 3-massage package down at the Saray Hammam. Bob and I drove down to Kyrenia a bit early on a placemat hunt. Our’s are beginning to really show their age now. Can’t find any melamine/board ones here and I don’t like cloth ones. We managed to get some from Madame Coco that are ok. They are plastic but quite a nice design. I think I will have them for the kitchen dining table and bring some board ones out for the formal dining table next spring. Anyway…. my massage was really good and helped ease my shoulder which is quite sore. I have a trapped nerve. A good hour spent for £20.

We stopped at China Bazaar on the way home. I need a cake tin for a dessert cake I am making for a dinner party at our place on Thursday night. Managed to get a set of 3 at a very good price. One of them is heart shaped!!!! Looked for napkins but total fail there. Ours seem to have disappeared.

Habibi the Gardener came up today and began the autumn prune. He also weeded and planted the three new plants I bought in Tatlisu. Next Sunday he is coming with 2 other chaps and they are going to prune all the trees which have just grown so much. The Cyprus pine next to the house is up to the roof. And they will also put the sand down on the upper drive paviers. The rain has removed some of it from between the paviers.

Our little lemon tree has quite a few lemons on this year and a couple almost ready to form part of our gin and tonics. This little tree started as a 9 inch plant in a small pot and is now as tall as me. It’s handily placed right behind the bbq, so ready for squeezing on a grilled seabass or some sardines. The smell of the blossom is absolutely sublime. I wish my orange trees were doing as well as the little lemon. They are very slow to fruit. Hope for a better year next year. It’s been so dry this year and the water was off of course.

Not much else to relate. Life is very relaxed out here and we just count ourselves so lucky that we are in such a peaceful spot and able to still eat breakfast and lunch outside in shorts in November. Winter is coming but not for a couple of months yet…..

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