11 June 2019 (Tuesday) - Turkish Geocaching

Those who know me will realise that (on special occasions) I will look for film pots hidden under rocks. According to the geocaching map there were only four geocaches within two miles of our hotel. Back home I wouldn’t hesitate to go for a little wander to find the lot. But with the heat of the Turkish day being well over thirty degrees Celsius I wasn’t wanting to walk far. So finding myself wide awake just as dawn was breaking I thought I might walk half a mile down the road to see if I couldn’t find the closest one while it was still cool.
"er indoors TM" wasn’t overly keen on the early start, but it had to be done.
Even at quarter to six in the morning it was still hot. We checked out with hotel security who seemed amazed that we were up so early, and it didn’t take long for us to find a little plastic tube stashed in a rock which was only a little way off of the road. Having done the secret geo-rituals (albeit in English rather than in Turkish) we went back to the hotel and back to bed for a couple of hours.

With a party of about thirty (I’m not sure how many of us there were – I kept losing count) it wasn’t really practical to get everyone to do everything together. This morning it was just me and "er indoors TM" for brekkie. Grilled tomatoes, eggs benedict, crepes, omelette and pizza went down very well.
But for all that we’d had a fairly quiet brekkie we soon found quite a few of our group at the pool where I spent the morning alternately doing crossword puzzles and dozing.

I scoffed a chicken salad for lunch, then together with "My Boy TM", "er indoors TM" and I took a taxi to the village. There was another geocache not a hundred yards from the taxi rank. I thought I might go find it…
I eventually found it. It was up a rather steep hill. Some might describe it as a cliff... it was a tad steep. And there wasn’t a path as such. I just scrambled up as best I could. Perhaps flip-flops wasn’t the best footwear for the job? I did tread on a particularly vicious thorn that went straight through my flip-flop and drew blood.

To celebrate the find we went to the bar where we’d been drinking gin the other day. I had an amaretto sour. It wasn’t long before we met up with others in our group. "My Boy TM" and Craig hired quad-bikes and went off on a mission – we later heard that they had been stopped at the airport by the Turkish army.
We went on a little shopping mission with family. It was mostly a good afternoon, but there was one rather irritating episode…
Have you ever been shopping in Turkey? Nothing there has a price. When you ask how much something costs, the shopkeeper asks you to make an offer. He then rudely insults your offer and insists his obviously fake merchandise is worth its weight in gold. You then embark in a rather epic haggling session and end up paying what you offered in the first place.
One haggler got a bit too keen and demanding with us. Turkish shopping takes too much time. Back home you can go into a shop and buy what you want in seconds. You can’t buy anything in less than twenty minutes in Sarigerme.

We came back to the hotel, and I sat by the pool doing crosswords until it got too hot. I was heading back to our room when I met some of our number in the bar. I sat with Elliott for an hour or so drinking cocktails.

We had a rather late dinner today. As always the food selection was amazing, but on the stroke of nine o’clock the entire lot was swept away. How could so much food be moved so quickly?
The ladies and children went off to the resort’s amphitheatre where there was some children’s entertainment going on. Craig (father of two of the children) announced that he was going to do “man shit”. Several of us went to do “man shit” with him, and "er indoors TM" came with us too. In the end it turned out that “man shit” was bowling whilst accompanied by far too much lager.
I’m rubbish at bowling. I just watched.

With bowling bowled we then sat on the balcony bar (a favourite place) drinking brandy until midnight.

10 June 2019 (Monday) - Pool and Beach

We had something of a better night having figured out how to set the air conditioning. Mind you we would have had an even better night had we not had normal people banging on the door at five o’clock. They’d got the wrong room. Woops!

Brekkie was rather good. I kicked off with a bowl of fruity loops, and then had a medley of pretty much whatever I fancied from the buffet, and then chased it all down with some fruit. (The fruit made it all healthy).
I then wandered down to one of the swimming pools.
It would seem to be something of a tradition at hotels to reserve your sun bed by chucking a towel on it. Our designated towel-chucker had bagged some sun-beds, but not enough for everyone. With about thirty of us in our party, bagging a large enough area would take some doing.
I found our area, grabbed a few more sun-beds, and sat and waited for the troops to assemble.

We’d chosen an area strategically placed equidistant to the pool, the bar, and the lunchtime restaurant. I got myself a lemonade and started on my book of crossword puzzles. Having (arguably) drunk far too much yesterday I’d decided to have a day on the soft drinks. But despite my good intentions I’d had half a dozen Malibu and cokes by the time "er indoors TM" had made her way down. As I was pouring the third (or was it the fourth?) down my neck I watched a little lizard running about the place. “Little” – it was probably about eight inches long.
In between crossword puzzling I helped our team with the general knowledge quiz that was taking place. The poolside entertainment featured a general knowledge quiz every day. The rules were that you weren’t to use mobile phones to access the Internet, but it was done on an “honesty” basis. No one was policing it. We scored fourteen out of twenty on some rather hard questions. Personally I suspect there was some shenanigans going on when the winners claimed to have got seventeen questions right.

We had a rather good dinner, then several of us took a stroll down to the beach. Craig and Chris hired jet-skis and flew around the coast for a while. Then five of us had a go on a UFO.
Have you ever seen the UFOs?
They are huge great inflatable thingies that you sit on whilst a speedboat drags them about. And when I say “sit on”, I actually mean “cling on to for dear life”.  I got on to the thing and sat with everyone else. But I didn’t stay sitting for long. I was soon prostrate with the G-forces, and somehow or other I was sitting on my right hand. Looking back I think I was clinging too tightly with my left hand; it was some hours before I got any sensation back in it, or before I could actually use the arm in any way.
And I managed to burn my feet on the walk back to the pool. The sand on the beach was *hot*!

I made my way back to the pool where I had more drinks and did more crosswords for an hour or so before going back to our room where I did a little laundry. It was so hot that I could swill a shirt in the sink, hang it on the back of a chair on the balcony, and it would be dry in half an hour.

I sat on the balcony bar for a while where I met a rather lonely chap. He seemed very keen to strike up a friendship. I didn’t want to be rude, but there were thirty of us along for a family wedding; I really didn’t want to be picking up any strays.
We had a rather good (mob-handed) dinner, and with dinner scoffer we sat on the balcony bar until everyone eventually wandered off to bed. When there was only "er indoors TM", "My Boy TM" and me left we went down to the bowling alley for a quick ten pins.

Despite there being a lot of “young ‘uns” in our party, they’d all gone to bed. "er indoors TM" and I were last up, and sat on our balcony drinking cocktails until far too late.

For all that today was a rather lazy day, we’d packed a lot in. As you can see from the photos.

9 June 2019 (Sunday) - Sarigerme

We woke to find that our room’s air conditioning was rather keen. I turned it down a tad, then stood on our balcony admiring the view, Spectacular!!
Using my WhatsApp app I messaged that I was rather hungry, and several of us went down for brekkie. I do like the all-inclusive holidays. All you can eat… I ate three brekkies. Mind you I was rather dismayed to see that I’d used up a lot of my data package. Last week when I spoke to the people at the mobile phone company they’d told me that Turkey wasn’t included in my data roaming package, but I could buy five hundred megabytes of data for six quid.
They’d got it wrong.
I could buy *fifty* megabytes of data for six quid… and in last night’s trip from the airport to the hotel I’d used forty of those megabytes.

Glen and Matt had planned to go to the market in Sarigerme this morning. We joined them. The taxi from the hotel to the village cost two quid. We had a rather interesting shopping experience. To be honest the local shopkeepers and stallholders spoil it for themselves. Everything is “cheap as chip” and “cheap like Asda price” whilst still being “not cheap shit”. There were stalls blatantly selling under the “New Look” and “Asda” brands when clearly they were nothing to do with those chains. Every stall was selling fake designer stuff. But what really boiled my piss was that nothing was priced. If you wanted to buy something you had to name a price yourself and then spend ten minutes haggling about it. I would probably have bought far more had I not had to mess about like that. I ended up buying a pair of shoes and a hat for the wedding (which I needed) and a wallet (which will go in the bin later).
And the shopkeepers haven’t really worked on their signage. What is a “boutique pension”?
Finding ourselves shopped out we stopped at one of the street-side bars. The shops were hard work; the bars were all rather good. We sat and had gin cocktails before going back to the hotel.

Once back at base we met up with more of our gang and had a little explore around the hotel complex. I topped up the gin with some vodka cocktails, and then sat by the pool for the afternoon doing crosswords with a suitably numbed head.

I went for a shower to find the maid had tidied our room, and then (after three dinners) several of us went back to the village for a little more shopping and some cocktails. Jager bombs, pina coladas, strawberry daiquiris, black Russians…it all got rather messy.
Being father of the groom I insisted on paying for the evening. Seven of us (I think it was seven?) got rather silly on only fifty quid.

Today’s photos are a tad out of order. The ones at the beach were taken on my new camera. They haven’t turned out too bad really…