When Olympic athletes succeed but judges
This blog “Just In” (CNN) is full of the latest and very intersting news and well worth many visits to learn more.
The friend of Northern Cyprus shares its Daily News of Life and Times around the world
I sat in my lounge with furniture and cartons and boxes all around me and thought where on earth do I start.
So came the arduous task of unpacking. I had brought 3 rolls of carpeting on the container as I must confess I like carpet in my bedrooms, so before I could do much I had to lay carpet in the bedrooms and hallway. A lot of people thought I was mad not wishing to keep the tiled floors but in latter years I have noted quite a few people have laid carpet! It was not an easy task but I got there in the end and then I could start unpacking. It was like Christmas morning opening all of the 70+ boxes. I had almost forgotten what some of my stuff looked like. This was in addition to unwrapping the furniture which had been very well packed with bubble wrap and corrugated paper. I only had one slight bit of damage to an item of furniture and one broken mug, so that really wasn’t too bad. It took about a month to clean up the floor tiles and put all of my bits and pieces where they needed to go, getting air conditioning installed and purchasing some of the items which were not included in the build and having them fitted.
At that time I was glad I had brought most of my furniture with me as there were very few furniture shops locally and not being familiar with Lefkoşa then I would not have known where to go. I even purchased flat pack bedside cabinets, chests of drawers and a computer desk and this all came over on the container. A kind neighbour helped me to assemble all of this so everything was coming along well. Of course, nowadays there are many really good shops selling all manner of furniture but that is now, not back in 2004.
At last I was really here and when your home is around you once again it really is time to start living the new life.
There was the area of land which was to be the garden, it was a lot bigger than I had envisaged and as I didn’t particularly want a garden at all (this was why I originally had decided on an apartment) I was totally phased out by this enormous expanse of ground.
On reflection I am so glad I have the garden where I can walk around and feel space. Well, here I was with this blank canvas, I had not intended to do much to it for a while, that was to be a project for the future, but as I sat outside on the terrace enjoying the sun, my mind started working overtime and I had very quickly planned one area of the garden. So it began, as soon as the first area was sorted out I already had visions of the next area and so it went on, and towards the end of the year it had been paved, planted with shrubs and fruit trees, and chippings laid over a fairly large area to reduce maintenance. What a lovely experience that was and I am pleased to say that although I am not a good gardener I seemed to make the right choices with most of the plants and trees and, with the exception of one or two, they are still flourishing. My one pride and joy is an avocado tree which I planted that year, it grew tall but year after year there was no fruit but in 2011 I had a marvellous crop of avocados, a bit small but I was able to have many delicious starters of prawn and avocado from my very own tree. I recall someone telling me that it could take 7 years before the tree would fruit and this seems to have been about right. I can take credit for the design of the garden but have to say I had a lot of help with the hard work of digging and planting and of course all of the paving was done by contractors.
So for the next few months I was enjoying the bungalow and the garden and finding my way around. Life was good.
During the year, my ex-employer asked me to go to Spain to “sort out his office”. He had recently moved there and as he had always totally relied on me to see to almost all of his business and personal affairs he was at his wits end and called for help. I arranged to go there in October 2004 for 3 weeks. It was a nice change and during the time I was there I managed to get the office and procedures set up for him. I was all geared up to go to Spain and then there was a change in my life which was the best thing that could have happened to me.
Two weeks before I was due to go to Spain, there was a little face at my front door and there sat a small black cat. I went towards it and it fled but only to the end of the building and it sat there peeping around the corner at me. After one or two repeats of this, I opened a tin of tuna, which was all I had that was suitable and he gobbled it up. Before very long I sat on the front steps and he was on my lap. I have no idea where this cat came from, he was a bit timid but obviously used to being handled and petted. Later on I found he had a fascination for open trucks or cars with open windows, he would be investigating in no time at all and I decided he had probably been carried to my area while investigating a parked vehicle somewhere. I felt so sorry for whoever had lost him. Off I went to Spain thinking that would be the last I would see of my new arrival, I had asked my sister to feed him and would just wait to see what happened. I didn’t expect him to still be there on my return. I emailed a couple of times and was told “yes, he is still here”, but I thought oh well he will probably move on before I get back. I had a nightmare journey back from Spain and instead of arriving back at about 9 pm it was 6 am the next day when I finally got home. What was the first thing I saw? a little black cat coming to greet me. I was over-joyed. He stayed and never ventured too far away, except initially when he was off courting (he hadn’t been neutered) but this was soon remedied with a visit to the Vet. The Vet thought he was about 3 years old so I kept this in mind as he grew older.
So, my new found friend became part of my life for the next few years, I wish it could have been longer, he was so affectionate and I loved him to bits. If I was in the garden and he couldn’t see me he would yowl until he knew where I was, then he would wander off quite contented. In the afternoons, when it was hot outside, we would lie together on the settee with me reading and him gently snoring in my ear, he loved to be cuddled and would sleep with his head on my shoulder. I find it difficult to describe the affection we had which seemed to be on both sides.
It was very sad that in 2009, after having my cat for 4½ years he developed a nasal tumour and there was nothing that could be done for him as an operation would have been too dangerous to carry out in such a sensitive area. A few weeks later, he was sinking fast, not able to eat or drink and sneezing blood everywhere so I had to make the decision to put him out of his misery and ask the Vet to put him to sleep. I brought him home and buried him in the garden. For the next few days my life was in turmoil and I cried incessantly, I never thought I would get over losing my cat, but they say time is a great healer and this is true but I still think of him and wish he had lived to a grand old age. I am sure people who have lost pets will be able to understand how I felt at the time.
Now I was on my own again and suddenly I felt so alone, not bored or stressed, just very lonely. In 2010 I made a trip to the UK, the first since I had moved to North Cyprus, it was a nice couple of weeks and I realised I had forgotten the greenery and some of the nice things and I started to think maybe I should go back.
To read Part 1, click here:- My Life in North Cyprus – Chapter 1
By Margaret Sheard
In the past I had the pleasure to read the accounts of an English traveller in Cyprus in 1879 and I wrote about some of his experiences in a newspaper as follows.
With the modern trappings of life we may think we have everything or want more but what of those people who went before us, what did they have 133 years ago? Nice clothes, a wide selection of food to choose, electrical playthings and property? Perhaps the following gives us some clues!
“In the features of this old dame, who earns her living by selling bread in Larnaca, there still linger traces of youthful comeliness. Her thin locks are silvered with age, and the years, as they dragged heavily along, have furrowed her brow. Yet her eye is clear and bright, and wears a look of calm contentment: it is the blue eye met with among Cypriotes of European origin. She might, indeed, pass for an old Scotch crone, or the decent owner of an apple-stall at the corner of some London street. With her modest earnings, probably amounting to no more in a week than a London huckster makes in a day, she is respectably clothed and housed; but it must be borne in mind that food and raiment are cheap in our newly-leased island, and that in absence of palatial almshouses the poorer classes are constrained to adopt thrifty habits, and somehow contrive without difficulty to find shelter for themselves”.
The manner and language of past English writers, in this case 1879, may not suit today’s sensibilities but they do paint a picture of the past even if from a slightly lofty viewpoint.
“The bullock cart of Cyprus is a conveyance restricted in its use to a very limited area. It may be encountered on the dusty road to the capital, or to Famagosta, wending its way along to the rusty music of its wheels. We meet it also crossing the fertile plain of Mesorea (between the mountain ranges), labouring, produce-laden, down towards the coast, or hooded and transformed into a slow-paced jaunting car, conveying a family to some favourite resort. It is as picturesque in appearance as it is incomprehensible in construction. Why should its rude wheels weakly dip towards the axle, seeing that, were the wheels flat, greater strength would be obtained, as well as increased space in the carts? It may be that the diagonal strain of the spokes tends to keep the fellies together, and is a relic of a wooden age, when tires of iron were unknown. An intelligent wheelwright of Cyprus, when questioned on the subject, solved the mystery of the skeleton cone and short axle-trees, by stating that, to the best of his belief, wheels were always conical and axle-trees short. The bodies of these carts are constructed of a hard, fibrous wood, found on the island, of a kind admirably fitted to resist the strain and jolting on the rough roads traversed. The Cyprian ox is a finely-formed, clean-limbed animal, fleet of foot when not overburdened or underfed. It is used in ploughing and in treading out grain, and, as in India, is held in reverence by the natives, who as a rule, abstain from eating its flesh”.
—— // ——
So there we have the basic mode of transport of the day but there was still the fast moving vehicle of the sporting type and this, the camel, had longer legs and originated from the deserts far away and I was told recently, can still be found in camel parks in Mazotoz near Larnaca and Paphos.
So today with BMW’s Hummer’s and all of the other smart cars hustling for positions on our quality roads with older Peugeot’s and Dogan’s, what would be your preferred choice? To live a simple life as did our forefathers of 133 years ago or to go with the flow in the materialistic fast moving 21st Century and leaving behind and forgetting about another way of living?
My thanks and appreciation to the staff of Milli Arşiv for the incredible information they have provided that makes the publishing of this article possible.
By Chris ELLIOTT
Listening to the radio recently there was a song played which was a “blast from the past”. This was Take My Breath Away and I recalled the car advertisement on UK television in the late 1980’s or early 1990’s featuring this song. I think this is one of the best advertisements ever but also seem to remember that there was some controversy about it and it was discontinued, not sure what the reason was though.
I expect some of the older generation will remember this but it may also appeal to the younger generation who have not seen it before.
I find it nice to recollect some things from the past now and again and it doesn’t take much to jog your memory when you hear or see something in your present day routine to make you think, ah yes I remember something that happened many years ago.
“You will get rid of your fears as you whirl”
Whilst in Lefkoşa in April this year with some time to spare, wandering around the old walled city I discovered there were performances of the Whirling Dervishes being held at the restored Bedestan next to the Selimiye Mosque so took the opportunity of finding out more and attending one of the performances.
I spoke to Tanju Hastunç who is the musical choreographer for Dance of Cyprus and he told me that they are trying to promote the Whirling Dervish performances at the Bedestan. At that time there were 3 half-hour performances between 11am and 14.30pm every Tuesday and Wednesday from March to November and this can be increased if there is sufficient demand. The Whirling Dervishes also perform at Mevlevi Tekke and Museum which is along the main road on the left hand side after passing through the Kyrenia Gate. If anyone wants more information about the Bedestan performances contact can be made on 0542 881 0303 or 0533 870 3339.
The Bedestan, which has recently been refurbished, is indeed a most beautiful setting for this type of performance and when we went into the building you could see the massive amount of work which has been carried out,
There was a short introduction by Edip Gűvan who is a member of the Dance of Cyprus followed by a slide show about the Whirling Dervishes and their origins which date back to the 1200’s and Mevlana Celaleddin Rumi who was born in the province of Balkh, Afghanistan in 1207, he left with his entire family in 1228 and eventually settled in Konya in Anatolia where he developed a profound tolerance for religion. He was considered to be a philosopher, poet and scientist. He died on 17th December 1273 and was laid to rest beside his father in Konya, which is in present day Turkey.
Then the Whirling Dervishes appeared on the stage accompanied by Edip Gűvan who told me later that he represented the leader or controller of the dancers to ensure they moved in the correct way. Initially they sat and meditated for a while and then started on the routine which eventually led to the whirling performance. There were three Whirling Dervishes and these were Semih Nazlim, Bıbı Galiş and Burak Akbulut. The whirling starts with the arms crossed over the chest, then the arms are raised, the right hand directed to the skies ready to receive God’s beneficence, looking to the left hand turned toward the earth, they turn from right to left around the heart.
On the stage there were 4 white mats which were for the Dervishes and the Leader and a red mat shaped like an arrow which signified the sultan (or sheik) and was laid if he was not present. There was an imaginary line across the stage, depicting heaven on one side and earth on the other and it was important that the dancers moved from heaven to earth and back to heaven and in this way they progressed around the stage.
We were told that they can whirl for 21 minutes but then the blood pressure in their arms starts to go down. Later, when talking to the three young men who had performed they said they could continue whirling for an hour or more. They are in a very deep act of meditation while whirling and it is amazing that there is no giddiness but this is the result of their meditation. We were also later told that the young men are very spiritually guided. I asked Edip at what age they start following this spiritual path and he said it is normally at about 10 years old but this can vary.
I suspect that many of the audience were tourists and I did advise Tanju to aim some advertising at the expatriate community who I am sure would love to see this type of performance but are not made aware of what is available. We for sure were not aware of it and only came on it by chance because we were in the area on other business, but I am so glad we did.
It was a lovely performance in an ideal setting and I do hope that there is sufficient support to enable this wonderful tradition to continue at the Bedestan.
By Margaret Sheard
During the ceremony organized to commemorate Taşkent martyrs, President Derviș Eroğlu said that no one should consider that Turkish Cypriots will sign an agreement which will destroy bi-zonality, sovereignty and full and effective guarantee of Turkey.
84 martyrs who were massacred by Greek Cypriots 38 years ago were commemorated yesterday. During the ceremony, the Mukhtar of Taşkent village, Durmus Asandır gave a speech and then grandchildren of a martyr read a poem. The ceremony ended with speech by President Eroğlu and a visit to Taşkent Martyrs Museum.
During his speech at the ceremony, President Eroğlu stated that Turkish Cypriots suffered for a long time, were massacred, lost their close relatives, forced to migrate but never quailed. We, the Turkish Cypriots, trusted mainland Turkey and succeeded. Moreover, referring to the people who consider that Turkish Cypriots may yield, President Eroğlu stressed that we would never go back to endanger our future.
Source: TRNC Public Information Office
What can be worse than when you have an automobile accident in a foreign country and I have had that experience here in Cyprus some years ago when my car was hit in the rear in Lefkosa.
I rang my contact and they alerted the police who duly arrived and after checking my documentation the police directed me to follow the offending driver to a workshop and said he will pay and if he doesn’t we will be very angry.
Soon I arrived in Haspolat at the Active Garage where my car was inspected and the offending driver was seen to be signing forms and after this a staff member from the garage returned with me to my home in Girne and then took my car away for attention at the garage the following day. Maybe four or five days later I hitched a lift to collect my very clean and dent free car and was delighted to be told there was nothing to pay.
AUTO KING franchising is a Turkish company aiming to repair small and medium size damage with quick repair techniques and know-how, on interior and exterior parts of motor vehicles. AUTO KING commenced its activities in Turkey on January 1st 2001 following a preparation period of 6 months in Turkey and the USA.
The founder of the AUTO KING, Mr. Fazıl Yücetin has been a professional in the Automotive Sector in Turkey for 25 years holding various posts in production, design and development, sales and marketing, after-sales and CEO positions without any interruption until the year 2000, following his graduation as a Mechanical Engineer in Istanbul.
Fazıl Yücetin has combined his accumulated knowledge and experience over the years, together with the most advanced American based quick repair techniques and created the AUTO KING franchise business model with the understanding of fixing a damaged part instead of replacing it thus aiming to save time and money to those who pay the bill, motor vehicle owners and insurance companies and also contrıbuting added value to the country’s economy.
AUTO KING continues to render its innovative services and business models to individuals and corporate business partners with its own customer orientated service understanding and 1,200 pages ISO 9001:2000 Quality Management Standards through a quality AUTO KING Service Workshops Network widely available throughout Turkey and developed every year.
AUTO KING is located in 36 major cities of Turkey and 1 major city of KKTC, active at 44 Service Centres with 93.000 m2 covered service area, 1,300 dedicated and trained man power and 95 AUTO KING Mobil Service Vehicles fleet.
AUTO KING, with two franchise Service Centres under the frame of its subsidiary company AUTO KING Trading Limited has commenced its activity in Northern Cyprus as of 14thApril 2012 under the direction of Kerem Can at the following:-
AUTO KING – Lefkosa – Haspolat Service Centre has 1.250 m2 covered service area and 16 trained personnel, 2 mobile service vehicle, whereas AUTO KING – Lefkosa – Centrum has 500 m2 covered service area, 6 trained personnel and is situated in the centre of the one way system by the Kyrenia Gate.
AUTO KING – North Cyprus under the direction of Kerem Can is dedicated to provide its customized “Micro Repair”, and “Mobile Parts Repair” b2b services to the insurance companies located in Northern Cyprus as well as its collision repair and auto services to retail customers with its unique customer satisfaction orientated processes.
There is a lot that can be written about the depth and special care offered by the AUTO KING service packages and this can be viewed on their web site (in English) AUTO KING
From the perspective of the North Cyprus AUTO KING operation, Kerem Can the Franchise Manager – North Cyprus in Haspolat had the following to say “Auto King is an American brand service with all of the modern techniques and knowhow which has been brought to Turkey by Mr. Fazıl Yücetin where there are now service centres in 36 major cities in Turkey and of course, two here in Lefkosa.
The worldwide Auto King concept of repair work is to make repairs whilst leaving the vehicle in its original state where possible, that is to say to repair and recondition parts which is faster and less expensive than traditional methods of off with the old and on with the new which can be very expensive and time consuming..
All of the work undertaken here is logged onto worksheets with a bar code system with individual workers being monitored here by a quality inspector as well as the whole repair and maintenance operations being logged on to a computer controlled management and quality control system based in Turkey that ensures we are always striving for the best possible service for our customers. When the repair work commences our customers are updated on progress to reduce their worries and make them happy.
Like our colleagues in Turkey we have mobile service vehicles that respond to requests for help from private customers and those who with insurance companies are working with us. On arrival photos are taken of the damage by our servicemen and fed into our system when a quotation and work period is stated and highly competitive prices quoted. Daily we receive calls and our vehicles are travelling throughout North Cyprus and can be arriving within a few hours to start the help process.
To our English speaking friends, they should not be concerned at the distance involved, we are here to respond and will give guaranteed work. For example, if a vehicle repaired here visited Turkey and the repair work came into question, by visiting a local Auto King service centre in Turkey the problem in question would be accessed through the system and arrangements made to correct the fault as deemed necessary. I think this is what our English speaking friends are looking for, reliable and guaranteed service levels with a minimum of problems or misunderstanding”.
Like all experiences, they are personnal and I have seen Auto King at work and thought it to be a very impressive company and shows how new ideas and concepts are coming to North Cyprus. Our readers should carry out their own reserch and take up the option this company offer, as they see fit.
By Chris ELLIOTT
For more information call (0392) 233 59 99 or visit their web site AUTO KING click pictures below to see gallery.
EROĞLU: “NO ONE HAS THE RIGHT TO MAKE TURKISH CYPRIOTS GIVE UP THEIR HOMELAND AND SECURITY ”
The post of Security Forces Commander of TRNC was passed on to Brigadier General Baki Kavun, from Major General Mehmet Daysal with a ceremony at the headquarters of the Cyprus Turkish Security Forces, on Tuesday 14th August.
TRNC President Derviş Eroğlu, in his speech at the ceremony, expressed that no one had the right to make Turkish Cypriots give up their homeland and jeopardize its security. President Derviş Eroğlu said, Turkish Cypriots had put up a struggle and as a result had reached this point.
Referring to peace process after the upcoming elections in the Greek Cypriot side, President Eroğlu said, “Greek Cypriots either will come to their senses or Turkish Cypriots will take necessary steps. We cannot risk our future”.
President Eroğlu said, besides refusing an agreement based on realities, the Greek Cypriot side dreamed of returning to the pre 1974 era.
Moreover, President Eroğlu said United Nations and the effective and prominent countries of European Union not only condone but also support Greek Cypriots’ attitude for their own benefit.
Source: TRNC Public Information Office