We went back to Parakila right at the end of August. We wanted to be away for Kurban Bayram so we booked ourselves onto the vehicle ferry from Ayvalik on a midweek evening before the holiday was due to start. Well, that was not to be. First the government extended the national holiday to start before the religious holiday, then the ferry company phoned us to say that the ferry would be leaving in the morning, meaning that we had to travel to Ayvalik the night before and book into a hotel. No major issue and the huge crowds were marshaled through Greek immigration with great efficiency.
We let ourselves in, unpacked a whole load of tools and other things and were delighted to get out onto our own balcony in Parakila and were happily discussing our plans for our two week stay when we noticed a drip coming from…. somewhere on the roof. Ashley briefly inspected it and concluded that we needed a plumber. What to do? Well, we headed for the town square, bought ourselves a delicious homemade lemonade each and asked if anyone knew a plumber. A plumber was phoned and arrived before we’d finished our lemonade. Hilary was allowed to take hers home as long as she promised to return the glass.
And that is how we met Manos, plumber and husband of the lady who owns the local taverna (he does the home deliveries). He came home with us, borrowed a ladder and inspected the damage. Our solar system was badly damaged to the point of being dangerous (the solar tanks there have an immersion heater in them). He told us that it needed replacement and gave us a price. Well, three prices for systems of varying quality. We chose the middle one that had to be ordered from Athens. Which turned out to be a fairly painless process (except financially as this was an unexpected expense). A week later he and his assistant were up on our roof, fitting the new system. Which seems to be perfectly satisfactory.
However, whilst the guys were up on the roof, they noticed a problem. The roof was distinctly…. sloping where it should not slope. There was no time to do anything about it that trip, but a roofer was arranged for next time we were out. This was the cause of some anxiety for us as roofs, as everyone knows, can be very expensive items when they go wrong.
We had a very busy two weeks as it turned out. All the windows in the house have wooden shutters and those which were exposed to full sun all summer needed some urgent repair and maintenance. We experimented with various stains and varnishes and Ashley ended up treating all the shutters with polyurethane varnish. This left them looking very good but we doubt if it helped his tennis elbow.
We got into a bit of a routine and found our way around Kaloni and the delights it has to offer (it’s a small town but it has several supermarkets and DIY/hardware stores including one that came to be known as the man cave). We went to Plomari which is famous for ouzo, had lunch and bought a bottle for a friend who was going to bring Ashley’s new lens and boots over from the UK. We lounged around on the terrace and we read.
We got back to Selcuk just in time for our neighbour’s middle son’s wedding. Which was a lot of fun. Loud, as Turkish weddings inevitably are, and everyone danced. The groom is a professional singer and he sang a couple of songs himself which, as he has a wonderful voice, was very much appreciated. We met up with our friend and Ashley got his boots and his camera. And the rest of September was spent catching up at home.