I know I was banging on about fibromyalgia a post or so back, but on the whole I do have to say that Aphrodite’s Isle has been a rather good place for me to live. Yes, I do have flare-ups of fibro but I’ve also been able to cut right back on pain-killers and I haven’t had a migraine since I got here. We are both sleeping much better, far less disturbed nights than when we lived in New South Wales. I was regularly up in the night there to have a cup of tea and stretch my legs. Now I sleep right through. My husband says I laugh a lot more and look much happier than when we left Australia.
I was dreading the summer as everyone was saying how awful it is. Well, it is hot and the humidity is appalling at times but, as we’ve come from Australia, it’s really not as bad as we thought it would be. It may be that English people living here really can’t tolerate the heat after the living in the more temperate climate of the UK. But after 40-odd years in Australia, most of those living in fairly hot regions, Cyprus temperatures haven’t seemed extraordinary. Yes, we do have a fan in each room and out on the verandah, but only occasionally have we needed to use the air conditioners, just a couple of really hot nights when we had the aircon running all night. And the funny thing is, I’ve tolerated the heat here far more easily than I did in Australia.
I do wonder if it’s because I’m back in the Northern Hemisphere because my body seems far more at ease in North Cyprus. I really enjoy having summer where it’s supposed to be – in June, July and August – and winter where it’s supposed to be – in December, January and February. It just feels right. And I’ve noticed that, while I used to get upset stomachs if I ate too many eggs (two a week were all I could tolerate), tomatoes or
mushrooms, here I can eat as much of these food choices as I like with no problems whatsoever. Food in North Cyprus is seasonal and organic, we eat very little red meat as we just find it leaves us feeling heavy and lethargic, and far more vegetables and fruit since they’re so cheap and tasty. I’m currently working my way through huge, juicy peaches and nectarines, and stuffing my face with dark red, fat, juicy cherries from Turkey. I’ve also in the past munched my way through gluts of strawberries and apricots and other fruits.
I’m also finding I’m getting the urge to get more active, which has been quite a surprise to me. I now swim in our communal pool every morning and I’ve extended the aerobics I do. I’m now up to 2 lengths of the pool and 1 width, whereas when I first got in I could just about manage a couple of widths. I spend 30 mins in the pool every morning and now I’m hopping in for a couple of lengths (and more as I build up) in the early evening. The morning swims are the most refreshing as the water is fairly cool, whereas in the evening and after the heat of the day, getting into the pool is like getting into warm soup, as my husband put it so succinctly. Since we’ve arrived I’ve lost 18lbs in weight, just shifting it slowly which is the healthiest way to get off the pounds.
We lived in rural areas in Australia for quite a few years so it’s prepared us for life in the slow lane here. There are no shopping malls, no presence of big chains like McDonalds, KFC, or Starbucks. The shops are all small and you have to ask people for the location of shops when you’re looking for particular items. The driving is absolutely chaotic, the rule is that there are no rules. But as everyone expects everyone else on the road to be as mad as they are, there’s a casual acceptance of the chaos, no road rage, and unexpected politeness in that cars will flash you and wave you across if you’re turning right, or they’ll flash you and slow down so you can cross the road safely.
And the hospitality and friendliness is out of this world. When we first arrived in Kyrenia and our car broke down, crowds poured out of nearby restaurants to offer us help and rustle up a mechanic to get us going again. Similarly, a while back our Turkish neighbour turned up with a big smile to bring us fresh tomatoes and cucumber from her garden. Yesterday we were walking back from the swimming pool when we saw her husband killing some of their chickens for the Seker Beyram feast. I went a bit green when I saw the pathetic bundles of feathers, but Bryan’s made of sterner stuff since he’s served in the army and seen armed conflict and dead bodies at first hand, so he just said that they were food for people who aren’t well off. I had also bought some dates and grapes for this little family for the celebration, by way of saying thank you for the vegetables given earlier, and handed them over the fence later.
Then late last night there was a knock at the verandah door and our Turkish neighbour was standing there with – wait for it – one of her chickens, all cleaned and gutted, as a gift back to us. I hope I didn’t turn green again when I looked at the chook, but I was profuse with my thanks for her generosity! And if you’re wondering what I did with the chook, I’ve cooked it, to honour the fact it gave its life to feed humans and to honour the gift of friendship offered by this young woman.
I remember when I was back in the UK in 2002-4 that the healing work I did was much more powerful than in Australia, much to my surprise. Mediumship really flowed for me, and Tarot readings took on a depth and accuracy which, like the healing work, really surprised me. I do wonder whether it was because I was back on familiar ground, where I was born, and so I wonder too how all the moving around we do now – even though it expands our understanding of different places and cultures – sort of scrambles our inner circuits. The jury’s out on that one, but it’s definitely in on the healthier and happier life I’m now leading in North Cyprus – and the verdict is a big thumbs-up!