Tuesday 16th June 2009
There being no wind to speak of, we motored the 20 miles back to Akçakoca, passing Chaliventures just outside the harbour. They said they hadn't seen another yacht in days. In fact, they didn't see us until we had passed them and called their name!! We spoke on the radio and gave them some info on their next stop, then made our way into the harbour and tied up. The restaurant owner who had taken our lines on our first visit came out and welcomed us, and this time he was accompanied by his seven-year old son Salih. We invited Salih to look around the boat and he jumped at the chance, and was joined a few minutes later by his 11-year old sister Didem and her camera. They were charming children, very friendly and very polite and we were happy to have them on board.
Shortly after we tied up, the harbour master came by in his car, wound down his window and spoke to the restaurant owner, who passed on his message - we must replace our Turkish courtesy flag as it was too tatty! In fact, one corner of the flag had come unstitched and a few threads were hanging loose! Anyway, the Turks are very reverent towards their flag - you never see a tatty one, and there are always plenty to see. So the restaurant owner kindly sent his daughter on an errand with Chris to buy a new flag. We thought this would be difficult as there were no chandlers in town, but in Turkey you can get flags in stationer's shops, so we soon returned with a new one that cost the massive sum of 2.50 TL (a little over a pound!)
Salih and Didem enjoyed lowering the old and hoisting up the new, and Didem caught on very quickly when shown how to tie a bowline in the signal halyard.
Later that evening, Gizem, their 14-year old sister, arrived at the boat with her two friends Seroy and Tuğba. She had seen her little brother and sister come aboard and was keen to have a look too. So on they came, had a look around the boat and chatted with a bit of English. Then we asked did they know how to play Okey, and they were pleased to show us the basics of the game. They were three very charming young ladies, and it was good to see that the friendliness and politeness that we have come to expect of the Turks is engendered in their younger generation too.
Salih and Didem Seroy, Tuğba and Gizem