Big news: the council has finally granted planning permission for our revised four-hotel-rooms-plus-a-house idea. Like every bureaucratic process it took longer than we expected or wanted, although we did get some reassuring feedback on the structural soundness of our designs. Anyway, we’re really glad it’s all sorted, and now we can move on to getting quotes for the concrete-slab foundation work and the pool.
A while ago we passed our one-year anniversary of being here. It would be great if more had happened up in the orchard by now — at the moment it’s just the fig trees, dry grass, marker pegs, and one steel telegraph pole with a light and a power connection box. But we’re optimistic that with all of the red tape out of the way, some earth should start getting moved around very soon.
One thing that we did manage to finish before the one-year mark was the kitchen. I know it has been drawn out over many blog posts, but it is now finally, properly finished. Here are some shots showing the tiled worktop and the finishing touches on the woodwork.
My mum and dad came to stay with us for the first half of August — we are trying to talk them into coming at a less outrageously hot time of year for their next visit. But it was good seeing our progress through their eyes, as they were last here almost exactly a year ago. Dad was extremely helpful in the garden, as he was the first time around. And they talked us into taking a seaside break for a few days: the first nights we had spent away from this place since we arrived. (A huge thank you to Sirem’s sister Çisem for holding the fort and feeding all the animals while we were away.)
We spent three nights at the Panion Park Hotel in the coastal town of Guzelçamlı, close to the entrance to the Dilek National Park. It was a really pleasant, quiet hotel and we can recommend it. They have a lovely pool and an equally lovely bar by the pool. They’ve only been open for six years and we were impressed with how well their landscaped garden had come along. Lots of ideas to file away for future reference.
What else have we been up to? A recent carpentry project was the door to the second bedroom. The old door was a bit of a mess and we had to lock it with a very amateurish chain and padlock around the handle. More importantly, the doorway was much lower than it needed to be, with a small window over the door for no good reason. More than one taller visitor had smacked their head on the low lintel (sorry, Mark). So we came up with a plan for a full-height door that included a central window with shutters for extra ventilation in summer. Sketchup again, of course. We think it all turned out OK.
The weather has been really hot, of course, but never humid. We found that the sun was tracking so far north that we weren’t getting enough shade on the sedir in the middle of the day. So we’ve rigged up some sheets to make it feel more pleasant.
Summer also brings the insect population to life. (Which is mostly fine, honest: even the wasps have their role in pollinating the figs.) One day we found some ants struggling to lift something up the wall and into the garden. Turns out they had stolen a cat biscuit, and were cooperating admirably to get it back to the nest.
And to conclude: some readers will be unsurprised to learn that our four kittens have not found new homes yet. We still haven’t named them, because we are clinging to the (perhaps foolish) belief that we’re going to successfully give most of them away. In an effort to show potential adopters how cute they are, here are some photos at 2 weeks and at 5 weeks. Incredible how much the ears grow over that time.