Saturday, May 29, 2010


Did I mention that the large and splendid house I live in is set in the grounds of a large and splendid garden? No? Well, have a butchers.

Yes, that is a pine tree in my back garden.

This garden is making me very pleased. When we arrived it was distinctly jungle like, and hadn't been looked after for years I don't think. But bit by bit we've been tidying, clearing, digging it over, and planting stuff. Well - I say 'we'. Have to say the missus, and at one stage her mum (her mum came to visit. It was terrifying.) rather took the lead on a lot of it, and spent a couple of afternoons in particular uprooting vegetation furiously in insane yes-we're-descended-from-amazons stylee. See for example exhibit below, which went from something resembling this

to this

in the space of about 45 minutes. I can't compete, so I don't. ;-)

Anyway, the upshot is that we're growing stuff. It's all a bit haphazard - see below for my pride and joy, the tomato jungle, which I love despite being pretty sure that this isn't what they're supposed to look like. My ma did say that you have to either remove the tops, or the sides, but I can't remember which and too scared of removing any part that may actually squirt out tomatoes, so I'm just letting them do their thang, free range, and just keeping my fingers crossed something useful will result.

But I'm very excited nonetheless. It's also amazing what a bit of turkish sun will do for your apparent gardening skills - we didn't do any of the faffing about with compost and potting and stuff which I remember my parents doing, just bung the seed in the ground, wait around for a few weeks, and lo and behold up it springs. (Or in any case, up *something* springs. Some of what I've been watering could well be weeds - I have no idea what most of these plants are supposed to look like, so I'm playing a sort of long-term guessing game as to whether we're going to spend summer mornings breakfasting on freshly picked homegrown parsley, or, yanno, thistles.)

Anyway, it's all very pleasant. I seem to have run out of useful garden photos though (I imagine there will be more if anything recognisably vegetable-like occurs) so I'm going to finish with an off-topic one from the nicer end of the island. Quaint score, lots.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

It simply *is* cricket!

Technology is a marvellous thing. I am currently watching the 20Twenty online, whilst following the match on over by over, and blogging. Yes the stream has a lot of adverts on it, but they're all in Foreign, so I really don't care.

Aussies are currently 24-3 off 6, LOOOOOSERS! (I have to get that in now, before they completely turn it around and we're humiliated.)

In other news - I have a job! Of sorts. I am not completely sure it's not going to go tits up, but we shall see. Anyway, hurray huzzah etc.

I am also quite enjoying the fact that in response to the UK political situation (we're all doomed, to terminal indecisiveness if nothing else) I don't even have to say "I'm leaving the country!" indignantly, having already done so. Score.

45-4! Losers!!!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Decisions, decisions

This topical post was brought to you courtesy of that faintly melancholic state in which you drink through a might get deleted post haste, so enjoy whilst it lasts.

General election, eh? Golly gosh, it's actually quite exciting. Which I don't think it has been since '97, and I remember my genuine excitement then to be lying in bentles (what was the field opposite school called? By the firestation? Where we'd go to 'av a faaaaag?) under a "new labour sky" before it all went pete tong. Anyway, exit polls seem to be saying Tory but no overall control, and coalition government, which from my days at the various councils that shall not be named, is Bad News - nothing useful ever gets done because the whole thing descends into the mechanics of doltish politiking and point scoring.

Over here there's also big vote news, no general election but they've been working on a reform of their constitution for a long time, which is now being voted on, and it's been massive massive news. The current constitution dates from the last coup time, which was 30 years ago or so, and it shows (are you part of the establishment that don't like the majority party in government? Why not petition to get them shut them down in court!) and so the reform is a Big Deal. The politics here is treMENdously complicated - nothing so simple as a left/right split - and to be honest I can't make head nor tails of it. But it does seem to be a genuinely exciting time, and this reform thingy seems to be a once-in-a-generation affair. Feelings are running high - fisty-cuffs in parliament and hitler comparisons flying about the media. So again, it's all good stuff.

In other, more facile, news - both turkish & english footie leagues coming to an end, again both genuinely exciting races coming down to the last match. (Trabzonspor, my adopted team, petered out spectacularly in the league after flattering to deceive - think Man City - but won the fa cup equivalent yesterday, so that was good fun. Particularly the 'us going mental in a central istanbul bar packed with Fenerbahce supporters' bit...)

And for me - well, voting has begun on the 'shall I stay or shall I go'. After toughing out the shitty months of cold and lack of dough, the sun is shining, the missus has got work so wolf is kept from immediate door, I'm feeling a lot more at home here, the turkish is coming on fine, Friday night contentment, house and garden and island are all a genuine pleasure now. Etc etc.

But on the other hand, by any of the criteria that I laid down before I came out here, it's a fail. No job, no friends, no hobbies, no sports teams. (Can't blame these on anybody but myself. But it's like the whole joining a gym and thinking that because you're paying for it you'll go. No, it turns out that even post-emigration, despite my hopes that being somewhere new may force my character to change into someone who actually pulls their finger out of their arse once in a while - I'm still a lazy shite.)

So. I said I'd give it 3 months and assess, and it's been 4 now. What to do, what to do.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

To the tune of "tis the season"

I'm so bored of writing CVs
tra la la la laaaa, la la la laaa

It gives me the heeby jeebies
tra la la la laaa, la la la laaa

For my jobbo, it to follow
tra la la, la la la, la la la

Evry day a different version
tra la la la laaa, la la la la.

[collapses is a bitter and twisted heap]

By the way, here christmas seems to be just seen as a nice jolly celebratory thing rather divorced from its religious or indeed midwinter roots, and as a result I guess, carol tunes have too, and are used pretty much indiscriminately. S's mum has got jingle bells as her ring tone. Odd.