Escapism: Turquoise Coast
As we come close to end of 2020 the prepare ourselves physically and mentally for the ‘’winter of discontent’’, we sometimes require total escapism where we mentally beam to ‘’that place’, that heaven on earth where all the world problems just don’t exist. A proverbial fairytale land where we are whoever we want to be.
What better happy place than the Turquoise Coast of Southern Turkey. Just the name is suffices. Suddenly we are transformed into another fantasy existence where the life is bliss, the sea and sky fifty shades of blue. Our worries are on distant shores. We transform into our alter egos. Here we are, a scantily clad demi-god from mythological stories or a carefree Victorian poet like Byron, enjoying the grand tour conjuring verses with our quill through pure inspiration this heaven muses inspire. Perhaps we are the adventurous scholars, modern day Lara crofts/Indiana Jones’ who fearlessly plunges into the unknown the discover the undiscovered, treasures of old. Who knows maybe we are the hedonists of gilded ages in our dinner jackets and cocktails diving into amorous escapades with effortless glam like a modern day tycoon and heiress?!
Regardless of our alter-egos and fantasies, this serene shores and perfect blue seas unearths the best of us even in worst of times. We suddenly transform into version of ourselves we strive to become. This land evokes just that.
But I’ll tell you another episode of these coasts. No alter ego, no fiction this time. When one lounges on the near perfect terraces of Amanruya in Bodrum peninsula or when watching daredevils kite surfing in blissfully steady breezes of Akyaka it is hard to picture a wooden levantine schooner(gulet/tirhandil in local dialect) in the frame. Even more unlikely when it’s filled with armed to teeth troops of the Allied nations, modern day raiders and pirates if you fancy phraseology.
But it was just that, where in seldom remembered parts of history where truth is stranger than fiction, formal action reports moonlights as a hollywood script and mysteriously acronyms SBS,OSS,LSF manned by young men fought against tyranny with style and panache that would put Jack Sparrow to shame.
These raiding forces chose the neutral Turkish coast as the operational bliss as neutral Turkey casually turned a blind eye to their activities while clandestinely supporting them. It is a remarkable story in its own self. This idle coves and bays were as today and it was then, prefect hideouts to lay low blissfully far away from the praying eyes apart from the occasional fisherman or shepherd humorously invited to share the onshore dinner. Believe it or not there is an English Bay(Ingiliz limanı) and Bird’S Bed cove (Bordubet Koyu) where schooners lay camouflaged by day and went pirating at night raiding Axis garrisons in nearby islands.
Now you have a new identity you can conjure for yourself. Are you a Scottish aristocrat, an earl plotting your next mission on deck, or are you a dashing Boston fisherman sharpening your knife for coming action? Maybe and oxford student majoring antiquities, switching pencils to machine guns.
The tales of these people and their adventures are wonderful to explore more deeply and provide us with wonderful reads to get us through bleak midwinter days. In fact we may owe to them to preserve the tranquility and serenity of these shores, so next time you find yourselves basking in summer sun with meltemi breeze and a glass on your hand, try to remember their stories their sacrifice and have a wonderful session of daydreaming…
Places to visit / stay:
Macakizi is located just outside the pretty village of Türkbükü, Turkey’s answer to St Tropez, with its clutch of high-end beach clubs, restaurants and hotels, Surrounded by magnolias and oleander gardens it doesn’t get glamorous than here.
Here is a kite surfers paradise with steady squalls and miles and sandy beaches it it lies next a lush fertile river delta with charming river diners and beach bars where youth dance and party till sunset.
37° 3′ 59″ North – 28° 19′ 59″ East