By Serhat Akpinar……
In celebration of the life and times of the Akpinar family and the arrival of the New Year ahead in 2015, I would like to invite our Cyprus Observer newspaper readers to participate in a free prize draw for some of the delicious delicacies you can find at our family’s Akpinar Patisserie here in Kyrenia.
The Akpinar Patisserie started its journey of life in 1935 and will be celebrating its 80th birthday in the months to come..
You can participate in this free prize draw by cutting out a coupon from your copy of the Cyprus Observer newspaper and fill in your name and telephone number and then take the coupon and place it in the box at Akpinar Patisserie, Mete Adanır Caddesi and we will telephone the winners to ask them to collect their prizes after the 24th and 31st December.
Today I want to talk about the journey of life of “The Grand Akpınar”.
I noticed a diamond in the days I first started on the great journey of life. It was very difficult to believe my eyes. It was the most beautiful stone I had ever seen. I’d felt very excited. This discovery excited me a lot. My life journey continued. It gained a new dimension and I once again saw another precious diamond stone in front of me suddenly.
More valuable and brighter than the previous one, I bent over and took it. I continued my journey of life again, and after a while, I met another precious stone again. Bigger and brighter than ever before.
When I took the 3 precious stones in my hand in my journey of life, I saw that amazing beauty and brilliance. That was standing on my family and suddenly I woke up from this dream from another dimension. What was the meaning of this dream? My mother always interpreted dreams beautifully; however, I had not mentioned about it this time, It is the first time I am interpreting my dream, and today I share it with you. Yes, each of us has a precious stone in our hand. The second precious stone is telling us how to discover the wealth of precious stones within us. The third stone I have met in my journey of life is telling us the infinite values of discoveries within us, and with no end.
Just look at our intricacies within us to see our values waiting to be explored.
Our holistic family bonds, the existence of the existing values.
With the hope to be together in new discoveries with no end in the journey of life with our family and beloved ones initiated by the Grand Akpinar.
I’m offering my eternal love and respect on behalf of my parents.
The Journey of Life of the Grand Akpinar
It was 1923 and it was the first time that he was questioning about his future and he was passing there every day in his school days. It was the joy of love having and evoking feelings endlessly at the junction where love met intricisness.
He was leaving his thoughts into the water crystals carried by the bubbling fountains for hours. For him, there was life beginning.
Love was always there, friendships have always been there. Years were passing by and steps were taken towards the outer life. Working to shape his family life, Hasan Efendi, the eldest of the eight was taking steps to the very difficult days.
Convoys of carts drawn by horses and mules were the only vehicles to get to the capital and only after long travel. The capital meant a world centre for him on those days. People would come to the Friday Bazaar.
Firstly, products gained would be displayed and cookies, which he learned from his mother, an Ottoman Lady, shaped with his own hands, and of which recipes he kept secret would take place. And again, there began the dream of every child from the villages. Benches full of the incredible colours of the sweets on display, and then people would go back to the villages reluctantly with their small pockets full to be a source of love for a lot more tiny lives.
Years passed by very fast, leaving only traces of a struggle for existence after World War I and commitment to the survival.
He was not alone any more to lead his life. He would not leave his thoughts to cascade springs of water crystals as used to be. He was building a new life, and he was not alone. Yes, everything was there again. It was the first moment when first love in life was defined.
He decides to settle in the capital with the lady Misli, a teacher candidate in the most beautiful days of his life. It was time to realize his thoughts left into the millions of water crystals, of which he had dreamed for years.
The April of 1935 will be a memorable month for Ahmed Midhat Efendi. “Akpinar Hill,” “Akpinar Stream” and “Akpinar” had been the meaning of the moment of love, existence, and life. Now, “Akpinar” had become a symbol of love carried from his past to the future.
Waiting for this moment during his life, he was taking the first step with excitement on April 21. “Capital would meet love and I had come to the end of years of preparations” he said. My friends had not left me alone, a true pastry shop would be opened in the capital for the first time, it was small with not many varieties, but I knew I would not stop.
I knew that If I did not develop, that would mean going back, and I was getting to know that World War II would not stop. On that morning the lady Misli and I had put the first desserts on the shelves. The lady Misli had created consistency of Noah’s pudding and kept supporting me by making decorations with pomegranate grains.
I can never forget the day there was nothing left at all during lunch time after many days of preparation by the side of the Selimiye Mosque, and I had begun to think about the following day.
It was like my first child. Every day, opening the shutters in the morning light, a new day began after cleaning. In those days, seeing that they could not meet the increasing demands, he decided to train his relatives to be masters. Those young trainees established their own patisseries in various parts of the capital. They launched the culture of Cyprus sweets and cakes under the leadership of Ahmed Midhat Efendi in those years.
Three years after the first child was born. Ahmed Midhat Efendi, with a growing awareness of this beautiful responsibility, spent more efforts after the World War II. With the sense of professional responsibility, he went one step further with opening the second patisserie in Famagusta-Varosha region. The daily desserts were sent by the Nicosia – Famagusta train. The sweet culture created became a legend with each passing day. He could not meet intensive demands and opened the third patisserie in Lefke.
In his speech entitled “Awakening”, he says, “how quickly the years had passed. I would think that challenges encountered would be lost in water crystals.
My five kids found life and they got ready for their future with the help of superior mothering skills of the lady Misli. In terms of the theme of the future of our children, my three sons were leaving their efforts behind and looking ahead to the National Struggle.
I had succeeded to reach the cultural centre of Nicosia with Caglayan Patisserie apart from the central patisserie with the support of my daughters and holistic family values during the years of existence. To be able to reach the heart of tourism, Kyrenia took a memorable process in my life. Köşklüçüftlik Akpinar began to make its mark in the history of Cyprus Pastry. Good luck with it for the family and all the people of Cyprus.
With his very versatile, intellectual personality and creativity through the union of love with the inner world, he has been able to include sweet Cyprus cake, candy delight which he described as the mystery of mysteries, milk pie, bread, shredded wheat, coke, fancy types and pilavuna, one of the unchanged desserts of Cyprus, into the culture of pastry.
Ahmed Midhat Akpinar the founder of Akpinar Patisserie was also one of the founders of the first publishing houses on the island of Cyprus, the Youth Force Sports Club leadership and one of the founders of the Republican Turkish Party was born in Kirni (Pinarbasi) Kyrenia in 1913.
Shown below is the coupon which will be printed in the Cyprus Observer newspaper and we will be delighted if the newspaper readers will cut these out of their copy and fill in their name and telephone number and place it in the box at Akpinar Patisserie, Mete Adanır Caddesi and we will telephone those winners whose coupons are drawn on the dates shown.