At this time, it’s traditional to make predictions for the year ahead. Living in North Cyprus for the past 20 years, I have learned to leave my crystal ball in the cupboard, the one certainty being that nothing changes much.
Sure, prime ministers and presidents come and go, but the rhythm of life rolls around much as it always has. We are preparing now for the colder, wetter weeks that always follow the new year. Don’t worry, they will soon be gone. And while, elsewhere in the world, people are planning their precious holiday time in the hope of fun and sun, those of us lucky enough to live here just KNOW the bright, blazing days are on the way.
Meanwhile, hardy souls have thrown themselves on the mercy of the Mediterranean in the ritual of the Boxing Day charity swim. For some, this may be no more than a dip-in-dip-out affair, but they still have my admiration, a glass of port and a fat turkey sandwich being my preferred accompaniment for the day after Christmas.
As the year drew to a close, my wife and I were invited to the President’s reception for the media, held at The Concorde, one of the capital’s spanking new 5-star hotels, where we were able to chat with President Ersin Tatar and his wife, Sibel
Mr Tatar, who is halfway through his term of office, was upbeat about the future. The country, he assured me, is “on the right path.” I won’t go into the politics here, but the evidence is all around us in new construction, a visitor boom, and a growing awareness of what North Cyprus has to offer … that is, a simpler, slower, safer pace of life and the enduring appeal of a warm climate. Some things never change.