Mohamed was our host at the Sunset Beach Club, we saw him most days and got to know him quite well. One day he reminded us to look at the sky to see the Great Conjunction when the two largest planets in our solar system, Jupiter and Saturn, appeared closer together than at any time since the 17th century – known as the “Star of Bethlehem”. With clear skies and a open horizon, we only had look out of our door just after dark to see what appeared to be a single bright star above the horizon – a once in a lifetime event. I did take a photo but it was quite underwhelming.
Christmas Day passed like any other, we had a meal at the beach club. Mohamed asked if he could do anything to make Christmas Day special for us. He offered to serve our meal on the beach or “If you have turkey we can cook for you.” We were happy to eat from the menu – rare steak for me washed down with an enormous glass of dry but fruity red win and fresh fish for Tony.
We were pretty conspicuous parked at the top of the beach and passers by would often stop for a chat. Someone told Tony he had seen us on Facebook the previous evening so came down to have a look at the truck. Some visitors were British expatriates. I was curious to learn why someone would choose to make their permanent home at a seaside resort in southern Turkey. The climate was obviously a draw and one woman told me she had been in Turkey for six years and had recently had major spinal surgery. She said she paid a small contribution towards the cost but told me that there were no waiting lists and the hospitals were modern and well equipped. I also heard that people from the UK travelled to Turkey for expert dental treatment at a fraction of the UK cost.
There were shops in the nearby village that sold most things we needed and we also had the benefit of this sprightly mobile greengrocer who regularly turned up with his scooter stacked high with the freshest of produce. However much we bought it never came to much more than £1. His mandarin oranges were exceptional, the flavour was intense and the air was filled with their tangy fragrance as soon as we started peeling them.