Where shall we have our breakfast today? The answer, throughout the North Cyprus summer at any rate, is nearly always: “On the balcony.”
We are blessed with choices for where to eat at any time of day, the garden, the back terrace, the side terrace, inside or outside, but the balcony usually trumps the alternatives for many reasons. Mainly, it has the best view. Visitors always marvel at our panorama of sea and sky and, as one put it: “You’d pay a million pounds for a view like that anywhere else in the Mediterranean!”
But it’s not just the expanse of blue that draws us upstairs, there’s a practical reason for setting our table there and that is, it is covered. You need protection from the sun when temperatures can hit over 30 degrees, even early in the day and no one wants soured milk on their cereals!
Cereals? Yes, most of the popular European brands are available in North Cyprus, as are your favourite teas, coffees and soft drinks. You could stick to bacon and eggs, as you like, but why not be adventurous; try freshly-squeezed pomegranate juice from the local fruit and veg stall, with puffy grilled hellim cheese and baked figs (just off the tree, if you’re lucky enough to have one nearby).
A full Turkish-style breakfast is a thing to behold, a panoply of plates carrying cheeses, cold meats, fruit, nuts, honey and jammy spreads, with warm village bread.
The balcony it was again today, but the times they are a’changin’. The sun was up from 6 am but lower in the sky, warming things more slowly. For the first time since the beginning of the year, one could feel the breeze from the sea beyond.
We know from past experience that we may still enjoy a few more balcony breakfasts, perhaps even one more evening meal gazing at the stars, but we must also think about covering that table, folding the wooden deckchairs and heading back downstairs.