Wilting Pansies

It’s 103 in old money and we’ve like a pair of camp vampires only venturing out between the hours of sunset and dawn. Our sofa radiates heat like embers from a dying grate, the home entertainment system has gone on strike and the top floor of the house has become an oven which our useless ceiling fan only assists. We move slowly. This is not the climate in which to do anything quickly. We’ve never been keen on air conditioning. In our old Yalıkavak house on the hill we were able to leave our windows ajar to be cooled by the constant sea breeze. The mozzie net protected us from assaults by the squadrons of bloodthirsty bugs. Bodrum is a different kettle of fish. Twenty four hour traffic and a constant throng demands that windows are kept firmly shut at night. We can bear no longer our glowing bed and the nightly rite of sleepless sweats so we’ve relaxed our aversion to aircon. We procured a unit from a local store. The following day a child arrived to install it. The pre-pubescent boy stared at our 18 inch thick uneven stone and concrete walls in absolute horror, shaking his head and fumbling despondently with his woefully inadequate tools.

Liam rang our landlady for assistance. Canny Hanife arrived with plums in hand, quickly followed by husband and son. For good measure our neighbours also joined the jolly fray. An impassioned and gesticulated debate ensued around our marital bed. We left them to it and put the kettle on. Eventually, the Turkish Jury awarded nil point to the child and his woefully inadequate tools and cast him out into the street. More debilitating sleepless nights are anticipated until we find a solution.

19 thoughts on “Wilting Pansies

  1. Lots of water, Jack. It keeps my pansies proud and upright even in this heat.

    Seriously, I refuse to have air-con too, on many levels, but putting my feet in iced water works wonders. And a portable electric fan that can be placed at close quarters rather than (or as well as) a ceiling fan.

    We ladies in Spain also carry little hand fans with us wherever we go…think the Turkish ladies do likewise, possibly. Essential accessory.


    1. Advice heeded except for the little fan. I think I might get lynched by the macho Turkish crowd if I wander the streets holding a senorita fan (or maybe get a few offers) . I’ll try the ice torture tomorrow.


  2. Your writing is fabulous! I am continually entertained as I feel as though I am experiencing your time with you. That is what a true writer brings with his/her works! I need to catch up on reading and will.
    Take care of you.


  3. Jack I wonder why every year this heat comes as a shock. You’d think that after 13 years I’d be used to it. We have aircon in our sitting room only, but its gathering dust because its never used simply because it’s more of a shock if you have it on for a while, get used to the coolness and then have to get up to go to another room, or God forbid outside. I haven’t yet found a solution to cope with the heat. I stay in the bedroom, which is cooler (slightly) and suffer in sweaty silence until September arrives.


  4. Oh poor boys! I swear I would die if it weren’t for my air-con/ceiling fan combo at the moment. Tansas/Teksen in Konacik are selling huge industrial floor standing fans, might be worth trying one of those?


  5. Hi Jack, I can sympathise as, like you and Liam, I live in the centre of town. I don’t have aircon but there’s usually a breeze in Datca which keeps my bedroom pretty cool. However that means having the window open and suffering the constant noise until 4 or 5 in the morning; my top tip – get some earplugs, I never get a wink of sleep in July and August without them!!! Also I have a fan with a timer next to the bed – I put it on for an hour and am usually asleep before it switches itself off. If all else fails, I wrap a freezer pack – the gel type – in a wet tea-towel and apply it to my hot bits – agony but total bliss!!!!!!


  6. Take a window out and use the hole for the ducting, it won’t be pretty but it will work. Or move the bed outside like my neighbours do, but you’d need to buy ear plugs in Bodrum. Alternatively hire small child to waft you with large fans, ostrich feather by preference. K xxxx


  7. As you have to shut windows at night try a de-humidifier. I used one in Malta and it the heat was far more tolerable when the humidity is dropped. Only effective if windows closed thought. They are stand alone so no need for crazy installation building works.


  8. Same here Jack – We have a South facing place and laminate floors, the heat is locked in! Sleep with the air con on and wake every morning with a stiff neck and shoulder crick where its been blowing on me all night. Wet socks do work for a little while, at least long enough to get asleep but if you wake in the middle of the night its like you have shoved your feet in the toaster. What to do eh? xx


  9. I love my air con jack – Would not live without it. Sometimes when the in laws come to stay, there is a great debate on whether to put it on. I always win! 🙂


  10. Yikes! I’m catching up and didn’t realize you’ve been sweltering so. If you can’t abide AC, then you’re going to have to go with one or more electric fans. Not ideal but the air movement helps, and eventually you get used to the ‘white noise’.


  11. I´ve been distracted by the plums. I fear, intensely, they are of symbolic, sexual significance but it´s too hot for me even to contemplate that right now.


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