We have now entered our tenth week staying at Sundance Camp near Kemer having arrived on the 21st of March and are in the middle of a four day curfew, essentially a lockdown on steroids so not allowed leave the campsite let alone head for Durham. We are now becoming a little stir crazy and the time is coming we must plan to leave regardless. The country is opening up next week we are led to believe, and the campsite has visitors each weekend and they are getting bookings for the summer. Now with the possibility of the border opening to Greece by the end of the month we are looking to head north again to be closer and cross as soon as we are allowed.
As we said last week our family of stranded campers are leaving and soon, we will be the last ones left with Katherine and James with whom we have “coupled” up with for our travels and exit from Turkey. With help of friends here in Turkey we have decided to rent an apartment for a minimum of two weeks from next week. This will allow us to ensure that we socially distance and plan the next stage of the exit.
The week has been like most others we shop at the market have games and share dinners in the evenings, the excitement this week was the police did not turn up for a few days and we were able to get into the water for a swim but then the rain came! And the wind so batten, down the hatches and fast. Then as quick as that the sun returned and it was all campers and staff to launch the freshly painted camp boat. So funny the risk assessment took three seconds and off we went, and a successful launch was made. We hope we might be able to get a trip on it before we leave camp.
The food this week included a burger creation night, stunning what you can do when required. Sunday lunch is a shared experience and Katherine produced a braised beef dish with fantastic gravy and all the trimmings. This week’s recipe comes from our friend Katerina in Greece you get two one for Tzatziki and one for orange cake. To see more visit Katerina’s website there are some fantastic Greek recipes for you to try.
250 gr. / 9 oz. Greek yogurt.
½ cucumber, grated.
2-3 garlic gloves (chopped or pressed),
5 sp. high quality olive oil
Freshly ground pepper
Cucumber contains a lot of water, so to be able to use the grated cucumber, you need to squeeze out the water by pressing it in your fist. Peel the garlic gloves and run them through the garlic press. Mix thoroughly the grated (and squeezed) cucumber, the pressed garlic gloves, the olive oil and the yoghurt.
Season the tzatziki with salt and pepper. Refrigerate up to 2 hours to allow flavours to develop. Stir again before serving.
Orange Cake with Yoghurt Topping
1 1/2, 192 Grams cup sugar
1 cup, 128 Grams sunflower oil
2 medium oranges
1 cup, 128 Grams sunflower seeds
2 cups, 256 Grams of flour (self-rising)
For the topping:
1 cup, 128 Grams of Greek yogurt
¼ cup, 32 Grams of sugar or honey
In a cooking pan, boil the oranges for 4 minutes, change the water and boil them once more for 4 minutes. Repeat this process twice more. Change the water one last time and let it stand overnight. I usually do that the day before I make the cake.
Preheat the oven to 170C (338F), with the oven set to fan.
Cut the whole boiled oranges into 4 pieces and put the pieces in a large bowl. Add the sugar, sunflower oil and sunflower seeds and mix it all very well with a hand blender. Add the flour to the mixture with a wooden or other type of spoon and mix it slowly until it’s a homogenised mix.
Line a cake pan with baking paper and pour your mixture into it, and spread evenly. Place the cake pan into the oven and bake for 35-40 minutes, or until nicely golden.
Mix the Greek yoghurt and the sugar or honey with a spoon in a bowl. Once mixed well, place it in the refrigerator.
Check if the cake is ready by sticking a toothpick inside, once the toothpick comes out clean, the cake is ready. Remove the cake pan from the oven and set it on a rack to cool.
When the cake has cooled down, you can spread the yogurt mix on top and serve.
As soon as the sun came back so did the local police but this time to much amusement their van got stuck in the river and had to be towed out by the camp tractor. I had never seen a tow rope snap before but was glad to be far away from it when it did. Eventually success and they decided to beat a retreat and head back to their families to celebrate the end of Ramadan. And the campers were able to have a swim.
Also this week I have been playing with the drone and have got some lovely footage of the site but as yet have not been able to figure out how to edit properly so next week I hope to give you some birds eye views of what our home has been for the past weeks. We, I think reading the news from home can feel the frustration of many that this Coronavirus has wrought on the world and all our lives. The talk of the ‘New Normal’ is equally intriguing as we have no idea what is going to face us over the next few years. Taking what has happened to us here I do hope that we can be as kind and welcoming as the people here in Turkey have been to us. Without their kindness and trust we would have had nowhere to go. Many people have emailed us and Facebooked us asking why we did not head back home when this first happened. We were slightly bemused as it did not ‘Happen’ here until the week we arrived and were a 3500-mile drive home. As our plans were to be away for for over a year, we did not have a home to go to the van ‘Buster’ is our home and where would we park it when got back.
So if going back is not an option what do you do? Simple you stay put, and rely on the generosity of strangers, or as we now prefer to call them, friends waiting to meet you. If we learn anything from being stranded here, it will be to be kinder, understanding to strangers. It is a short one this week sorry but for some strange reason I can’t think of much better to say than, be kind to all.