By Richard Beale…………………..
Here are the answers below to my Cricket Quiz which you can read again by clicking here.
Question 1 :Alistair Cook
The friend of Northern Cyprus shares its Daily News of Life and Times around the world
By Kathy Martin…
Whether you as a reader of this ramble have any great interest or concern in the outcome of the recent Scottish independence referendum, you must be aware that “The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland” still is “The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland”!
by Ralph Kratzer
My travel experiences continue. After part 1 – AUGSBURG (click here) and part 2 – LONDON-STANSTED (click here), in which was described what could go wrong in such a short trip, now comes the tranquil part of our holiday, Christmas in Lincolnshire, a rural county about 230 kilometers (140 miles) north of the English capital of London.
We, my girlfriend Sarah and I, had been invited by her daughter Liv and her son-in-law Ben to spend the holidays together with them in their house in Sleaford. Also on board were Sarah’s grandchildren Millie and Pippa, and the two dogs Mambo and Seth. Full house, so to speak! But it would become even better …
Unlike the Germans, the British do not celebrate on Christmas Eve, as we know, but on Christmas Day. Christmas Eve is used to wrap up the last gifts unhurriedly and put them under the Christmas tree. Unhurriedly? In Liv’s and Ben’s case rather not… both go to work, two small children, two dogs, shopping and preparations for the planned Christmas dinner and so on, there is only little time left for a rest, to be true. But with Sarah’s and my help (I had the responsible task to operate the scissors by cutting the ribbons!) the countless gifts were wrapped and lovingly decorated.
Christmas was then a big family event. To the festive dinner on Christmas Day, which traditionally began in the early afternoon, as well came Liv’s parents-in-law, brother- and sister-in-law, and on Boxing Day (simply known in Germany as the 2nd Christmas Day) additionally arrived Sarah’s son Tom and his wife and another brother of Ben, also with his spouse. For the two little children it was, of course, a seemingly endless exciting experience with real lorryloads of gifts! And, believe it or not, on Boxing Day there was snow in Lincolnshire, white Christmas!!!
But, despite all the hustle and bustle, time enough remained for my girlfriend to show me the environment and especially the capital of the county, Lincoln. And of course to visit some typical English pubs, which I had been looking forward to. I have had, as already mentioned in Part 1 of my travel report, some business trips to England in the past, but never the opportunity to learn about the country and its people.
I heard and read much about the British pub culture and the traditional English beer before, especially the so-called real ale. We Germans, and especially we Bavarians always think – since our monks are said to have invented the modern beer brewing in the Middle Ages and the Bavarian Purity Law of 1516 still being valid in Germany – we also produce the world’s best beer! Correspondingly, we look down snootily on the brewery products of other nations… according to the motto: what do they understand of the production of beer?! But I must confess, among the dozens of real ales in England there are quite a few to which I could get used easily. And many English pubs still give off the unique atmosphere of coziness, which they are worldwide famous for. As it happened very well, Sarah’s son-in-law manages Sleafords largest pub! So we had, after our daily excursions in the area, always a focal point to end the day comfortably and at rest.
The ancient university city of Lincoln with its 120,000 inhabitants, at the same time the County Town of Lincolnshire and the seat of the County Council, has really impressed me. It looks back, like my hometown of Augsburg (Bavaria), on more than 2000 years of history and was, again a parallel, a Roman garrison.
And to all who had told me before “Lincolnshire is a very flat area!”: Climb up the “Steep Hill” to the cathedral in Lincoln! Than you will know how flat the county is!
Of course, I can not fail to mention that we also visited the Harley-Davidson Shop of Lincoln, for me an absolute must!
New Year’s Eve and New Year we then spent with dear friends of Sarah, to make us on our way to London afterwards, where we should spend the last days of our holiday.
But more about this in the next and last part of my travel report …
Learn more about Lincolnshire by clicking here!
We have received an appeal from Kyrenia Animal Rescue to circulate with our local readers news of Coco who has been stolen from the KAR Rescue centre and this appeal is as follows:
“COCO was stolen from the Kyrenia Animal Rescue centre overnight on Monday 15th September. She is due to go to England shortly and her new owners are devastated.
You can see from the photo that she has distinct scarring on her back, after she had been attacked by some other dogs. She has been neutered and cannot be used for breeding, she has also been micro chipped.
If you have seen this dog or know of her whereabouts please telephone KAR on 0533 869 4098 or 0533 863 1950. A reward has been offered by her new owners for her safe return.”
Richard Chamberlain, the renowned photographer and author of the book “Cyprus Scene and Way of Life in 1954”, has contacted cyprusscene to see what can be learned of a plaque that he recently purchased at an antiques sale.
Checking the British Army Unit webpage we can establish that the 17th Port Training Regiment based in Marchwood, England formed the 51 and 52 Port Squadrons in 1949 and despatched the 52 Squadron to Cyprus in 1957
1958 saw the reorganisation within the 17th Port Training Regiment with the 52 Port Squadron and other squadrons being recalled. In 1960 the 51 Port Squadron returned leaving 1 troop in Cyprus.
By July 1965 the role of the 17th Port Training Regiment was transferred to the Royal Corps of Transport and squadrons were disbanded. For more information click here.
So that gives us a little information about the 51 Port Operating Squadron but who was G. M. Louisides the presenter of this plaque and who did he present it to?
The final mystery is where was Camp Valetta? From what we know of Port Squadrons they were always based close to the docks they were working in.
If any of our readers can provide any answers to these question and hopefully supply copies of documents and photographs they will be received with great thanks and passed to Richard Chamberlain and in the first instance please leave your details in the contact box below.
We hope to bring you news very soon of when Richard’s new book “Cyprus Scenes and Way of Life in 1954/55 and sixty years later in 2014”. will be become available.
By Margaret Archibald and Sermen Erdogan…….
After a relentless search by Sermen Erdogan of England and Scotland and after the article of “Childhood Memories in the Governors House 1950-1961 – RIP” was published on www.cyprusscene.com click here, Sermen Erdogan managed to make contact with Margaret of the Archibald family. This is the amazing story of how they met after 54 years when their families lost contact with each other from the 16th of August 1960 when they all left the Governor’s House (now the Presidential Palace).
Following their sad separation in Cyprus and their recent contact, Margaret and Sermen have put together their joint recollection of memories of Cyprus. This is the continuation of their story and you can read the first two messages between Margaret and Sermen which are shown below:
Hi Margaret, I am looking for the Archibald family who were in Cyprus between 1956-1960, we were neighbours with them. The children’s names were Margaret, Joyce, Robert and David. Do you belong to that family?? I live in Australia and am writing a book about childhood experiences and memories of Cyprus. This is the reason that I want to contact the Archibalds. I will appreciate it if you let me know. Kind Regards,
Hi Sermen. Yes I am the Margaret you are looking for and my sister was Joyce and Robert and David are my siblings. We were in Cyprus at the time you have listed. I have often wondered about the children who lived next door to us in Cyprus. I looked at photos recently taken by mum and dad who have both passed away, my sister Joyce passed away also. It has been so many years since we were there. It would be lovely to hear how you have all got on since we were all children. Look forward to hearing from you. I have only been on Facebook since last Thursday what a small world we live in. Best regards Margaret.
Sermen sent the link for Margaret to read the Childhood Memories article in cyprusscene.com After reading the article of Childhood memories of the Erdogan family in Cyprusscene, Margaret wrote to Sermen in the following message;
Hi Sermen. Just read the article and it made me cry to see the photos of my family and your mum and your dad with my mum. It brought back so many memories. My mum was called Nina and my dad was always called Archie, he also had the nickname of Sunnie as he was always smiling, his real name was Robert. I have a niece called Nina and a nephew called Sunnie. I also remember climbing trees and fell off once and had to have stitches in my back. Do you remember my dad buying a white car? it was his pride and joy he brought it back to England when we came back. I have so many things to recall of our time in Cyprus. So lovely to catch up with you at last. PS I do remember you telling me you loved me but I just told my sister at the time it was our secret as you were too young for me. Lovely memories. Regards, Margaret.
Following these initial messages exchanged via Facebook Sermen and Margaret wrote the following accounts of their childhood memories in Cyprus.
I have very vivid memories playing with Margaret, Joyce and Robert. In fact I remember when there was a bit of conflict over a matchbox car with Robert when Margaret intervened, as she was older than us, and taught me my very first English word. She said just say “Please” to Robert and he will give you the car. It did work well and I never forgot my first word in English!
The Archibald’s father was a very handsome looking man, working all the time as the Chef in the Governors Palace. Margaret said “he was so handsome, when they were back in the UK at about 16 years of age all her old school friends thought he was my boyfriend until I put them straight. He stayed handsome just till the end when he was very ill. God rest his soul.”
I remember him smiling all the time and bringing goodies for us kids, both Archibald parents were very nice towards us. Archie was very keen on model aeroplane making and I remember scrounging around in the rubbish tip we used to deposit rubbish in at the bottom of the garden and finding bits and pieces of his handywork of the aeroplanes he had discarded and I tried to build my own.
I was very sick at one stage and had to have an appendectomy operation in the Nicosia General Hospital. My father was very sad and Sylvia Foot, noticing my father’s sadness, asked what was the matter with him. My father explained that his older son had an operation and was in hospital.
There was a big fuss in the hospital ward I was in when Sylvia ( Sir Hugh Foots wife) visited me armed with lollies for all the children, colouring books and an abacus for me to play with. I will never forget the Nurses fussed over me after that visitation. The chocolates that Sylvia had brought for me I could not eat, but I am sure my nurses enjoyed them. The Foots used to have a black French poodle that sometimes we would take for walks around the gardens which was rewarded by cakes or goodies by Sylvia.
Eren always remembers Nina Archibald as the lady next door who supplied Smarties and Cakes for the boys and girls. When he did not get any or finished his, he used to sneak David’s Smarties. The occasion that Robert remembers is when Eren fell in the garden pool, as he was always mischievous, when Robert gallantly saved him from drowning. As we could not swim we just looked on with my sister, not knowing what to do. Luckily Robert at that age could swim and saved him. The irrigation pool was in our playground as part of the gardens. It is amazing that our parents did not worry except on occasions to warn us about the pool. Lucky no one got hurt.
We also used to go down to the river a lot especially in winter to watch after heavy rains when it used to come down in a torrent and flood the bottom of the garden, it meandered around the gardens and then down to Nicosia. We used to collect tadpoles from the river with the Archibald children in the Spring and early summer and put them into the garden irrigation pool to grow so that we could watch their progress.
One day Margaret learned that it was my mother’s (Gulten) birthday and she quickly organised little birthday gifts for her. My mother became so happy as then we hardly ever celebrated birthdays. It was the first time someone gave her a gift for her birthday she said. One other incident I remember was when my mother (Gulten) cut her foot with a plate she dropped onto it. I ran to Nina and told her what happened. Nina came with bandages and patched my mum’s wound up. My mum missed Nina when they separated in 1960, never to be able to meet again.
Gulten now lives in Australia in Melbourne and is retired after working for a child care centre. She was very happy and excited that I was able to locate our long lost friends – the Archibalds. It brought back a lot of memories she said.
I remember the Foot’s boys when they came from England for summer holidays. My father constructed a cubby house for all the children in the palace gardens at the bottom of the hill and the younger of the Foot’s children used to join with the Archibald and Erdogan children sometimes to play. Father Erdogan was good at making hexagonal kites out of bamboo sticks and old newspapers and each summer there was kite flying for all the children. We also used to collect kites that broke their strings and landed in the gardens that were flown by the Greek neighbours in Strovolos. They could not claim their kites back unfortunately as they were not allowed into the palace grounds. Lucky for us we always had spare kites.
Our favourite game of all was hide and seek and we always played this game when we were all together with the Archibalds. Sometimes it took a long time to find the smart ones in the gardens. By far though it was the birthday times that we enjoyed most as special treats by Nina or my father were on offer.
Margaret use to be great on monkey bars. I used to be amazed how she could swing around and do all sorts of tricks.
We all used to play from time to time near a big water tank in the garden and I remember later after the Archibalds had left, standing on this tank and watching the row of cars that brought Yuri Gagarin to the Presidential palace to visit President of Cyprus, Archbishop Makarios. Yuri Gagarin was the first Russian Astronaut to go to space from Russia at the time. I remember him being a very young blonde chap and waving to onlookers lined along the road below from an open topped car.
Sir Hugh and Lady Foot took up residence in Government house in December 1957.
My Father was posted to Cyprus in 1957 to become the personal chef to the Foot family in residence at Government House, Cyprus.
We did not accompany my father at that time as we were based in a guest house in Blackpool, Lancashire, commandeered by the section of the armed forces that dealt with families waiting to join their fathers overseas.
We joined our father in early 1958, flying from an RAF base in the West of England to the RAF base (I think was in Akrotiri), we were then driven by army lorry to what was to be our new home for approximately the next 2 years.
We were all very excited to be together as a family again, the family consisted of my Father – Archie, Mother – Nina, myself aged 11 years, sister Joyce 10 years, brothers Robert aged 5 years and David aged just over 1 year.
We could not believe how hot it was when we arrived at our new home in Cyprus. After leaving such a cold England.
Our new home was what we now call a bungalow, long and narrow and made of yellow coloured stone; we had three bedrooms a kitchen and bathroom as was usual for army families, all household facilities were provided for a family of six which was the usual thing carried out for army families no matter where your family was posted to in the world.
There was also a yard at the front with a fence around it, needless to say the fence did not stand for
very long as photos we have testify to, as we played out-front and with the Erdogan children next door the fence on all sides became just the frame with no panels as it was an easy way to get from our house to theirs.
The grounds of Government house were free for us to roam, but we were told not to go within the perimeter of the house itself as this was out of bounds to us children unless accompanied by a grown up.
My father would take us into the areas of Government House only the household staff had access to, but I remember on occasions when the Foots were away we did go into the main ground floor of the house but never upstairs, we also used to go into the household’s staff room where there was a large red Coca Cola machine and we were allowed to have a glass bottle of coke which was a rare treat for us. We also were allowed into the kitchens which were my father’s domain and very impressive they were.
The school my sister and I went to was King Richard School at Dhekelia. We were picked up each morning on the road next to the grounds by the old type of buses that are used for taking tourists around the island, but our buses were just for children going to school, the school hours were 7.30am to 1.30pm so our school day was a short one as the heat in the afternoon was too intense to be stuck in a classroom.
I always remember having a plastic bottle with a strap that was carried around my neck which my mother filled with orange juice diluted with water, I have never ever forgotten that smell when drinking from that bottle, I have only ever smelt that smell a few more times in my life when drinking from a plastic bottle and it always takes me straight back to my school days in Cyprus.
My school days in Cyprus were on the whole uneventful just the usual school things that you have to get through each day. I do remember doing gardening at the school and trying to grow plants, as you can imagine a bit of a fruitless effort as the ground was so dry, but we had a good attempt at trying to grow plants.
However, after school was a different matter we had a whale of a time, me and my sister Joyce would race home from school to take a dip in the garden’s irrigation pool we called a “septic tank”, that was our swimming pool it was not very big but was quite deep, but to us it was heaven just to be able to cool down in the water.
We would then get into our shorts and tee-shirts to spend the rest of the day playing with Sermen and his brother and sister if they were allowed out to play with us. There was a swing near to the Erdogan house which we used to swing on but as there was only one swing and I being the eldest I always wanted to be on the swing, thinking back now I was a bit selfish. I did fall off the swing once and landed on the barbed wire fencing that was everywhere in and around the grounds, and had to be taken to the army hospital in Nicosia to have stitches in my back, I remember having a bandage round me that I thought was like a bra and felt very grown up.
I also remember going to see a specialist in the hospital quite far away from our home, to have my eyes tested. I had worn glasses since the age of about three, when I saw the specialist he told my mother the throw the glasses away they were now a waste of time as there was nothing wrong with my eyesight. I never wore glasses again until I was over 40.
I remember playing in the lower grounds with my sister and the Erdogan children, the grounds were like an overgrown fruit and vegetable garden, we would climb the trees and pick oranges straight from the branches we would also pick ripe figs, they always tasted delicious. We also would try to open the great big water melons growing on the ground, but didn’t have much luck as we weren’t allowed a knife which was needed to open the melons.
As the Erdogan’s father was the person who was responsible for the upkeep of the grounds, I remember the grounds being the most magical place for all of us children to play in and we would spend hours in the grounds.
I remember the guards in the sentry box leading to the gardens and the prisoners who were under guard by armed soldiers who used to help Sermen’s dad with the gardens that was the only place they could be trusted to work in. I remember the guards calling out when they wanted us to stop, they would call out Halt, Stamarter, and Dur – not sure if that is the correct spelling.
We were not allowed to play around the palace of the Governor or swim in the swimming pool of the Palace, but we had the gardens with the orchards full of fruit trees and the forest next to the river. We were free to roam the gardens and we could pick oranges, mandarins and have any vegetables we liked.
I also remember my dad sleeping with a .38 pistol under his pillow he used to show it to us and tell us we were safe as long as he had his gun. Not a nice thing really but we were young so didn’t know the real danger. My dad also had a book of photos with the most wanted men in Cyprus. I don’t know what happened to that book, best not to know I suppose.
I remember the Foots going to the Troodos Mountains. I know we went up once or twice it was so lovely and cool after the heat of Nicosia.
We also found stray wild cats in the grounds which we took home begging my mother to keep them. In the end we had three cats and in their turn they had fourteen kittens between them. I remember waking up one morning with my baby brother David in his cot holding a newborn kitten by its tail.
We also used to go out of the grounds unbeknown to our parents. We would walk to the riverbed but only Sermen would come with us as he was older than his brother and sister, on reflection it must have been quite dangerous for us to go as far as we did as we were under armed guard day and night at home. We used to just dig in the dried riverbed not sure what we were looking for but we had great fun nonetheless.
We also played hide and seek which to be honest was our most favourite game, as the places to hide were the best places in the world, we would be able to hide for ages without being caught, we would be hidden up trees behind plants, and in bushes, we would cover ourselves in blankets borrowed from home, we had so much fun, we played hide and seek every day.
I remember once we were playing chase all around each other’s houses and I remember running away to try and hide from the other children and I jumped down from a wall and jumped right onto a piece of wood that had a large rusty nail in it, the rusty nail went right into my foot and came out of the top of my foot, I was screaming for my mother to help me, as you can imagine I couldn’t move but someone went to fetch my mother who then had to ask for my father to be free to take me to the hospital, I think it was near Nicosia. I could not walk on my foot for many weeks; I also had to have tetanus injection which I was not very happy about.
I loved to swing on monkey bars by my legs. I never stopped day after day. I also remember a large round concrete tank I think sunk into the ground that had a pipe hanging out at the top. I would lie down on the top and sing into the pipe and it made a lovely echo sound.
Coming back to the UK I went on to swing on any pipe or bar that I found for years after leaving Cyprus. David also become the South Kent Gymnastic champion when he was still at school. Must run in the family, as my dad was a gymnastic champion for the army as well. We must have been the first family to wear track suits and trainers which we did when we were in Cyprus. My father used to let me sit on his lap and steer the Beetle car that he used to drive to the shops. I only used to do that driving up from the bottom of the grounds to the kitchen area of the great house.
When my father had free time from his duties, my parents would always go with us to Kyrenia beach to swim; my sister and I never forgot it. It was the most wonderful beach for us children as we could walk out so far as the sea bed was like a staircase we could walk out for miles; we must have frightened my parents on many occasions when we walked out so far into the sea.
I remember playing with Paul and Oliver Foot when they came to Cyprus in their summer holidays, I remember going to the dried up river bed with them to see what we could find, They did not spend too much time with my sister and myself as we were girls and they wanted to play boys games which we weren’t interested in playing. They did spend time playing tennis and swimming in their own pool within their area of the grounds, they also spent a lot of time within Government house as it was a lot cooler inside, as they were not used to the hot weather we used to have in Cyprus.
Paul Foot died of a heart attack on the 20th July 2004, and his brother Oliver died from heart failure on the 6th February 2008. Very sad to think of people you knew as friends you played with when young have since passed.
We did not see much of Sir Hugh Foot or Lady Foot I think they were very busy, my father saw Lady Foot almost daily to discuss menus for themselves and guests they had staying. I know they had writers and other dignitaries staying from time to time, I know as I would sometimes meet them as I was strolling around; I was given a mother of pearl brooch by a writer. I do not remember his name but my mother knew who he was, but needless to say I should have put his name down and I didn’t. By the way I still have that brooch in my jewellery box.
I know Sir Hugh Foots brother, Michael Foot, came to stay as I saw him walking around the grounds a few times, I also remember someone else who visited the Foots, I don’t know who he was but I remember it looking odd as he was using his tie as a belt round his waist and I thought it so funny at the time.
I don’t ever remember my father or mother talking about the political situation in Cyprus, their only concern was keeping the family safe and out of danger.
My sister and I were bridesmaids to two members of the household staff, the bridegroom was British who used to be called in those days a batman, the bride was an Armenian lady who I think was a seamstress for the household but not certain about her occupation.
The reception was held in Government House to the left hand side inside the walled area, not in the main grounds at the back. My father did the catering for the wedding and also made the cake, which was an exact replica of Government House. There was a photo of the cake but no one can find it at the moment. I will endeavour to try and find the said photo.
If I can remember there was no music at the reception as it was a very formal occasion, as Sir Hugh Foot and Lady Foot attended for a short time, so everyone was on their best behaviour.
We did go to see the said couple once when we returned to the UK as they had a new baby son and we were invited to go and see him. Not sure where they lived in the UK but we only saw them the one time, the family lost touch with them after that.
We left Cyprus in August 1960 to return to the UK to live in army flats in Victoria London. I remember before we left Cyprus we were invited to the lounge in Government House to say goodbye to Lady Foot. She gave my sister and I three silver bracelets each, she also gave my mother three very large silver bracelets. My brothers each received a small gold St Christopher necklace.
My sister gave all of her three bracelets away to her school friends when we were at school in the UK. I still have all three of my bracelets, two still on my wrist unfortunately one has since broken so it is in my jewellery box, and I have had those bracelets on my arm for 54 years.
When my mother knew she was terminally ill she gave me her three bracelets to keep as she knew I would look after them and not give them away, however when I was living in Aldgate in the East End my flat was broken into and you guessed it, they took my beloved mother’s bracelets, I was devastated as you can imagine I wished the person who took them no luck wearing them or whoever they sold them to – no luck either.
My brothers being so young at that time have little memory of Cyprus David especially being only a just over a year old.
Robert remembers an incident at the irrigation tank and trying to rescue someone but he cannot remember too much either as he was only about 5 years old.
I just wish my sister Joyce, and my mother and father were here now so that we could all share our memories together I am sure there are so many more things we could put down on paper if they were with us.
I have come to the end of my memories from my time in Cyprus. I hope you enjoy them.
We would like to thank Margaret Archibald, Sermen and Eren Erdogan and the members of the Facebook page “Frozen Cypriots” click here who’s supply of the photographs included, have helped create this spendid article.
by Ralph Kratzer
After my contribution to the recent publication of the thriller “The Quiet Way”, written by an esteemed member of our expatriate community in Northern Cyprus and member of the TFR, Robin Melhuish, now follows an interview with him about his life and his work as an author. Click here to view the former post.
Robin, how do you approach cover design?
The cover is the eye-catcher, your silent salesperson, if you like. A bit like a shelf-talker in a supermarket, it must give an immediate, possibly subliminal message about what the book is about. It has to reflect the content, to give the message, without giving the plot away. So it has to include lots of elements from the plot.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
My favourite books are a mixture of fiction, comedy and documentary. I think the book that really got my juices going the most was way back as a child, Robert Heinlein’s ‘Stranger in a strange land.’ A book that taught me that indoctrination was bad and your mind only has the boundaries you set it (or allow to be set by others). The second has to be Eric Frank Russel’s ‘Wasp’ Spy field craft as science fiction, a wonderful book. I’d follow that with a book I read recently ‘Hitler’s Empire’ by Mark Mazower. Wow! I take my hat off to you Mark, for the best analysis I have ever read. Having lived in Germany for 30 years, I can only say he hits the nail on the head in every chapter. The list wouldn’t be complete with out Le Carré, I think the spy thriller with the action all in the head (mostly) was encapsulated in ‘Smiley’s People.’ A privilege to read it. Last but not least for the sheer fun involved, has to be Matt Beaumont’s ‘e’. for it’s very novel approach and side splitting humour, not to mention pillorying the advertising business.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in England, after college I worked in Germany and learned about the bits the allies didn’t know about. I settled in Germany for years travelling the world from there and ended up buying a house in the Czech Republic which was a renovation project for years, with many happy a tale to tell. It was here that someone suggested writing a book about it. A project which, unlike the house, never got finished. But I had got the bug and from then on I wanted to write, but other constraints, partnership etc held me from devoting the time it really needed to do it properly. Now I have moved to Cyprus, where I have the peace I need and the intellectual stimulus and encouragement from my lovely friends here.
picture above: Robin Melhuish (left) and Ralph Kratzer
When did you first start writing?
I started seriously about 20 years ago. The quote, that there are so many good books unwritten, was etched on my brain for a while. It wasn’t until I started, that I realised it wasn’t as easy as just telling a story. My first work (if you can call it that) was an attempt to document the tale of buying a house in the Czech Republic. It never really got beyond the draft notes stage. Then I got an idea about Nazi Germany that I turned into 150,000 words and thought was the dog’s whatsits until my father read it and threw it back at me asking when I was going to correct it. Crestfallen I put it in a drawer and forgot about it until I moved to Cyprus where I practically rewrote it. It is finished now. I must say a very steep learning curve and I still thank my father for pulling the plug on it all those years ago, because it was utter rubbish.
What’s the story behind your latest book?
I could be shifty here and say, buy it and find out, or if you are talking about the work in progress, then I wish I knew would probably be not too far off the mark. Let’s just say the new one is a conspiracy involving the last Gulf War and Nazi monies in the hands of some very prominent people. You’ve all heard of Good Banks and Bad Banks. Well this is almost Good Money, Bad Money, Matter and Antimatter. Complex, but I hope enthralling enough to get people to ask lots of questions.
Nobody else seemed to want me (publisher). (I hope there’s not a dry eye in the house.)
What are you working on next?
I don’t think next occurs. I think your brain picks up salient bits of information during the research you are currently doing which may be the trigger for the next story. It’s concurrent, not next in my case.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
The urge to put my dreams on paper / hard disc. I get up at dawn and work till 9am (which in winter is a nice short working day .)
When you’re not writing, how do you spend your time?
Exploring archaeological sites and off-roading in Cyprus. I hasten to add, not treasure hunting or destroying the heritage but documenting and trying to get recognition for the sites.
What do you try to tell in your stories?
They are all different, but on analysis, I suppose that they all carry some kind of message. Like don’t always accept things at face value. Or, why are we only shown particular things on the news? Is it really so earth shattering that some TV star is having an affair with the plumber? What are we not being told and why.
For further more information about “The Quiet Way” click the link below:
Don’t like it on Facebook before you’ve read it.
Girne American University has added one more academic protocol to those signed with other universities of the world and Turkey on the eve of its 30th year in higher education.
GAU will reach almost 130 campuses and education centers, besides those in England, Singapore, USA and Turkey, due to the protocol signed by Girne American University (GAU) and Hittite University.
The signing ceremony held in GAU Girne Campus Rectorate Building Meeting Hall was attended by GAU Rector Prof. Dr. Yıldırım Öner, Vice-Rectors Prof. Dr. Sadık Ülker, Prof. Dr. Olgun Çiçek and Assoc. Prof. Dr. Zafer Ağdelen and General Secretary Sualp Davut on behalf of GAU, and by Rector Prof. Dr. Reha Metin Alkan and other university authorities on behalf of the Hittite University.
The signing of the protocol was carried out by GAU Rector Prof. Dr. Yıldırım Öner on behalf of GAU and Rector Prof. Dr. Reha Metin Alkan on behalf of the Hittite University.
GAU Rector Prof. Dr. Yıldırım Öner recorded in his speech during the signing ceremony that GAU would reach almost 130 campuses and education centres by means of academic protocols thus contributing to the promotion of the country as well as an increase in the number of students. As Öner stated, the academic protocols will reinforce the relationships with mainland Turkey through language, culture and religious unity thus scientific productivity will be the result of the co-operation.
Hittite University Rector Prof. Dr. Reha Metin Alkan answering the questions of GAU TV has reported that he is well appreciated for the academic co-operation protocol signed by the relevant sides and he believes that studies as a result of the protocol can be enhanced and developed by commencing a structural liveliness amongst the lecturers and the students of the sides.
Following the signing of the protocol GAU Rector Prof. Dr. Yıldırım Öner reporting to GAU TV thanked Rector Prof. Dr. Reha Metin Alkan and emphasized that “Today, we signed a significant protocol. I wish that this co-operation will develop in the near future thus resulting in a valuable protocol for both universities”.
The protocol will allow student and scientist exchange, thus providing opportunity to continue academic semesters in other campuses.
GAU is first in the TRNC to be granted the accreditation of the leading accreditation institution of the world and Europe in English language education the Evaluation and Accreditation of Quality Language Services – EAQUALS.
GAU is again deemed worthy to be granted to be a member of the EAQUALS, European Union world leading education institutions and world higher education institution, which only two of Turkey’s universities were granted place as members. Thus GAU Foundation School is the second Turkish university and first in the TRNC for providing quality English language education.
Hatice Avşaroğlu, the Director of the GAU Foundation School has emphasized that they are honoured to be granted membership as the first TRNC university for EAQUALS, the European standard examiner and accreditor for English language education. Avşaroğlu also stated that; EAQUALS authorities have published a letter to inform the membership of GAU via the official website addressing TRNC thus this is a great success to mention.
Avşaroğlu, stating that GAU is providing world standard English language education upon the EAQUALS accreditation, also underlined that GAU is providing an opportunity for the students to participate in GAU England – Canterbury Campus Foundation School and language courses in the homeland of the language with no extra fees. Finally Avşaroğlu mentioned that GAU Girne Campus Foundation School is providing EU standard and quality English language education upon the EAQUALS accreditation.