The heavy and persistent rain of January eased off over the first third of February and disappeared completely during the second third where we had around 10 days of glorious weather. Not overly warm but clear blue skies and little wind.
Sadly the weather reminded us that it was still winter and the rain and storms returned (although not fully) at the end of the month.
Rain is necessary of course with our water coming out of the hills around us and this year, although there has been a lot of rain, is more typical. We have had three fairly dry winters on the trot now and that means the local water gets a bit brackish towards the end of the summer. There is a huge cistern under the beach and with a dry winter, sea water can leach into it making the tap water quite horrible. As the locals say, 'Yağmur yok, problem çok!'.
Around the village building and renovation work has been going on despite the weather with the Kavala hotel (next to the belidiye offices) getting a complete renovation and on the beach front, the Han restaurant has gone and is being replaced by possibly two restaurants and a bar: but this is Turunç - we shall have to wait and see. Renovation work also going on at the old Loryma building - where the cat shop was situated. It's to be a hotel I understand. The Corner Bar is staying put.
Boats are being refurbished around the village ready for the summer. Most of the boats are on the old football pitch at the back of the village but there seem to be boats everywhere. The sound of disc sanders is not yet overwhelming but it will come!
The good weather in the middle of the month brought out some fishermen to the harbour and the beach. I seem to miss them catching fish but they always seem optimistic and occasionally there are reports of a decent catch. When the weather is nice though, it's a pleasant way to spend a few hours.
The beach got washed away as usual with some big winter storms but already the JCB has been on the beach moving stones around in front of Fidan restaurant and Zeybek hotel to make it a bit wider. I think it may be too early for that sort of work because just one big storm could undo all the effort quite easily and there are almost certainly more storms to come.
Most of you will be aware that the locals have a slightly different attitude to animals than us Europeans. Dogs are usually kept outside and are not seen as pets, the way we see them. A week or so into the month a couple of large and aggressive dogs got out at the north end of the beach and savaged a smaller dog and biting his owner. The Jandarma were informed of course . . . Not sure what will happen.
Over most of Turkey prices have gone up - for just about everything. Inflation is now over 20%. My normal fresh fruit and veg in the market seems to be about 50% dearer and while some of this may be due to the weather it is a bit of a shock to the pocket. Potatoes have been around 5 TL for a kilo and onions hit 10 TL a kilo at one stage. Çok ayıp! Medicines have increased in price this month across the board by 26%. Most are sourced in Europe and with the TL/euro exchange rate not so good, prices have suffered. The pharmaceutical companies wanted a 35% rise and the government 15% so it seems a compromise was reached. Keep well, it's too expensive to be ill!
Out on the horizon, the Turkish Navy have started their regular February exercises, both surface ships and submarines. In March they do some gunnery practice, hopefully firing eastwards as usual!