It’s 5 am, our alarm has gone off.
With its individuality and uniqueness, just like the area, we are in. It is also not one that most people get to experience. Unless you happen to be in a Muslim country. And we are. The place is in Turkey, a predominantly Muslim country.
What else would you expect other than an ezan chant coming through a loudspeaker at 5 a.m.? The first of four ezan chants and we have begun our day.
Just in case that didn’t stir some life in us, the local dog feels compelled to add its voice in competition with the male voice, sadly both could be heard in equal amounts, off tune and very loud!. Did I mention how loud it is? Think back to your good old days of school sports events. With that over-enthusiastic teacher holding the portable loudspeaker and trying to instil enthusiasm into a bunch of bored teenagers. Have you got the picture?
Now, getting back to our current situation.
One foot after another, hoping that the energy levels will increase by the time we leave the house. They do. As we both know that once we are out walking it does have that feel good feeling, and Tequila appreciates our early morning extraction from our very comfortable bed. With a quick gulp of some pomegranate juice, grab some cat biscuits [not for us] to put into a bag, Tequila and her lead. A yell out to Arab sleeping down the road and we are off.
First stop, is to feed the group of cats just around the corner and one of them just happens to be Kizzy’s mother.
Unfortunately, Turkish people do not have a good record when it comes to the care and desexing of domestic animals. I do believe more people do care about animals than those who do not. This can be seen by how many people feed the street cats and dogs. If you do as much as you are able, on a daily basis, this will be a more efficient way to help the animals than trying to change a culture’s attitude. It’s not our place to do so, we are only visitors. We do our bit by keeping up with what was started by the people whose home and animals we are looking after. I admire their attitude to the plight of animals.
Just hopped off my soapbox.
On with the story about our walks around the neighbourhood. With the cats feed we head off for a 5km walk around the countryside.
With the cats feed we head off for a 6 km walk around the countryside. Which by my standards is not a long walk, it is however LONG when the humidity is up and the temperature at 6 am is 26 deg. Luckily us kiwis are a tough breed, we can handle it! [Slight exaggeration, we do have the occasional meltdown!]
Around the dirt road, passing the odd farm and a worker watering or weeding their crops which are grown in between the trees.
This country is such a mixture of old world charm and the new.
Old farming techniques seem to be usually carried out by women and the men driving the newish tractor. Though this morning we did see a woman meandering down the road in one, always an exception to every rule!. We admired the woman who was swinging an old style grubber to remove weeds around the trees, in hot conditions covered in clothing from head to toe!
Around this agricultural area, it is not picture perfect.
The trees that are grown in this area are pomegranate and citrus. The leftover citrus on the ground is usually tracked down by Tequila. You see they bear a resemblance to another favourite round thing called a tennis ball, which Tequila is obsessed with. Actually, there is something else she loves more than a ball. Well, maybe. Her second love would be a good splash around in the waterways.
She is hilarious as she will jump into one, then run out and repeat the process a few hundred metres up the road, leaving wet paw prints on the dirt road.
No Tequila we have no idea where you are. Indeed we don’t, as we pass her and she is sitting amongst the reeds, playing hide and seek with us. Funny dog.
As we amble along the roadside, we do pass a few houses which of course have more than one dog that needs to let us know we are venturing into its territory. Indeed we don’t want to stay, we are just passing by!! Distracting annoying animals is quite easy when you have dry dog food with you.
The sun is now rising further into the sky, time to pick up the pace and head back to home base for breakfast and that most welcome first cup of coffee. Of course, this is not the end of our walks I will be back to give you another glimpse into the countryside of Dalyan, Turkey as we are here until the end of August.