All of the picnics I’ve been on in England consisted of little more than a cool bag, a picnic blanket, a few bags of crisps, hard boiled egg and hp sauce sandwiches wrapped in tin foil and bottle of lemonade. Here in Turkey though, when someone invites you to a picnic, it’s a whole different ball game, you pack up everything but (and sometimes including..) the kitchen sink.
It’s Sunday today, the ‘holiday’ day in Turkey, the large majority of people have the day off and take their families and head to the nearest beach to have a picnic. Berkay doesn’t get a day off, as most people in tourism do not, but working nights means we can still enjoy the day together sometimes. We joined his friend during his break and headed to Boncuklu koyu, a little bay the other side of Fethiye town.
When we pulled up, it was clear everyone had had the same idea. Cars everywhere, all blocking each other in, barely an inch spare on the ‘beach’ to sit down. We did eventually find a spot, and begun unpacking our friends car. Sun umbrellas, 5 litres of water, blankets, rugs, towels, glass plates, cups, cutlery, a barbeque grill, a bag of meat, a bag of fizzy drinks, a bag of tomatoes, aubergines, potatoes, onion, peppers and bread, 3 adults, a baby and a carseat came out of that car. I have no idea how it all fitted in, if you saw the car, you’d understand. Compared to what other families had brought with them, it was nothing. Next to us was a family who had a tent..filled with things and people. Outside, they had a gas bottle with a double Turkish teapot brewing cay on top, a BBQ and a huge rug with a lady sitting down hacking away at very fresh sheep meat, and a lot of it.
While Berkay & Serkan set to work on lighting the barbeque (it took several attempts, watching them move that BBQ around to various places was like watching a game of musical chairs) Serkan’s wife, their baby and I were left setting up the blankets, rugs and everything else. I was put on baby watching duty while she prepared the vegetables, salad and laid the plates out on the rug. Wise move – I’m much better at looking after babies than I am preparing food!
I took the opportunity to have a little paddle with the baby, little Çınar is adorable.
After 45minutes or so, dinner was ready. Doesn’t it look good?
While we were eating, a little kalamar (squid) caused chaos in the sea, grown women, men and kids alike were darting around screaming ‘Kalamar, Kalamar’ and trying to catch it in their hats, it was fairly amusing, made all the better by the fact we had front row seats. The little fella must have gotten away eventually.
After tidying up a bit, but somehow still managing to spread out across 3 rugs, we all went for a little swim in the sea. Since it was a bay it was very calm, no waves whatsoever. It was lovely and warm too, although it did start to get a bit windy and I was chilly then, I think I must be accustomed to the Turkish heat, anything under 30 oC and I notice it!
We all headed home at 7pm, time for the boys to go back to work. I had a lovely day, even managed to join in a little Turkish conversation, I understand more than I can speak, always good to eavesdrop without people realising you can understand.. sneaky!
I really love these Turkish picnics. (:
Photos posted with permission of those in them.