Wandering around the Maritime Museum last week, I noticed a small photo of a familiar face.
In September 1983, my boyfriend, dog and I were given notice to leave our rented house in Tepecik, Bodrum. We had to be out the day before Bayram, despite this falling mid month, and we searched high and low for somewhere to go. If you think the rental market is difficult in Bodrum now, it was even worse then and on national holidays, every single spare bed and mattress in the town was sold to a tourist. Many would arrive in Bodrum and end up sleeping in their cars; we only had a bicycle, so that wasn't an option. I can't remember how, but Boatyard owner, Erol Özyurt heard of our plight and offered us his house in the middle of Bitez citrus gardens. It had no electricity, no bathroom and an outdoor loo but we were overjoyed to accept his offer. There wasn't a track to the house and we had to cross a small (at the time, a torrent later in the year) stream and a few fields to get there. Guests would have to be met and guided in or else be lost wandering for ages.
|Lon and Deniz being shown the way through the orange trees|
So, as I passed his photo in the museum, I offered up a big thank you to Erol Bey for being so generous in offering us a home and making my first Christmas in Turkey a beautiful one and the first of many.
|Boxing Day 1983|