The trip to Datca from Fethiye takes 4 hours altogether, with a short stop over in Mugla. Datca (pronounced Datcha) is a peninsula leading out from Marmaris, a 1 hour drive through huge mountains, with sea on either side. Once in Datca, a seemingly small town surrounded by mountains with visible sea on either side, we are picked up by our new host, Oscar. Oscar is Turkish, his wife, Lisa, is Chinese, and their very cute 16 month baby, Siren (pronounced Shereen) is a complete mix, utterly confused as to what language to speak, so speaks all three! On arrival we are greeted by two other Turkish families who had come over for a Turkish BBQ. The food was amazing, lots of bbq’d chicken, Turkish bread, guacamole made from avocados from the garden, bbq’d capsicums, and eggplant. The company was even better, me and Dan were invited into a chaotic household of children running round, babies crying, men playing backgammon, women cooking and pouring Chai tea, and it was fantastic!
Over the next few days we learnt how to plant grapes, using a method Oscars father used. We dug holes 2 metres apart leading down ployed dirt, then filled the holes with two scoops of cow manure, then mixed the cow manure with water to create a poo slushy, using a small pick ax. Once a thick mixture is made, by gradually adding dirt, the grape seedling is placed in the middle of the slushy, and dirt is added around the seedling to secure it firmly in the ground. My Daddy taught me a sign of hard work is a few good scratches here and there, so I was very proud of my blisters that night.
The following day we replanted goji berries into plastic pots in the greenhouse, all the while picking up tips of how to maintain different fruit and vegetables in the greenhouse until they are ready to be replanted outside. In the afternoon we helped Oscar and a friend of his to clear his neighbours bank of all the trees and shrubbery, burning the small sticks and storing the bigger logs for planting mushrooms in- tomorrow’s job.
The FOOD. If you’ve been following my blog, your probably aware that me and Dan are big foodies, we enjoy eating, we enjoy cooking. At Lake House Datca we are fed extremely well. Beginning the day with a proper Turkish breakfast, consisting of a variety of things. Today it was a fried egg, a tuna, carrot and spring onion salad, Turkish bread, olives and a luncheon type sausage. One of Oscars friends tells me “The worst thing about Europe is their breakfast.” They do not enjoy any of this cereal nonsense!
For lunch we had rice, cooked ‘Turkish style’ which I will definitely have to get the recipe for and relay on here… The best rice…
Chicken soup, fried chicken in chilli, Turkish bread and salad.
And for dinner we had homemade pizzas, and Turkish bread.
Oscar tells me that the reason Turkish bread is eaten so much is because Turkish families are often very big, with women usually having 3 or more children by 23, so in order to feed everyone bread is used as it’s cheap, so is used in every meal. We are not complaining… The work is physical, but with this much good food we are energised and ready to go. After our lazy two months on Santorini Island, lolling around reading and eating Fava bean dip, it’s nice to use those muscles again… They were almost creaking!
We will stay here for 2-2 1/2 weeks and then will go for a wee ticky tour of the beautiful Turkey. Stopping in Ephesus to stay with a lovely Turkish man we met on the bus to Datca, who owns an orange plantation!