Turkish pop is a bejewelled, self-contained world where superstars you and I have never heard of command big money for putting on the old showbiz style. Every major holiday, they hop over to North Cyprus where the top hotels outbid each other to produce the biggest show of all.
The undoubted queen of this musical strata is Ajda Pekkan. She was performing before The Beatles had their first hit and is still held in awe by Turkish fans and media. This New Year’s Eve this most durable of performers rocked our newest and swankiest hotel, the Merit Royal Diamond. In all, nearly 50,000 visitors flew into North Cyprus to enjoy the New Year weekend.
The wrapping paper has been crunched, the tree has come down and the decorations put away for another year. Christian or Orthodox, Cypriot or ex-pat, however you celebrate, Christmas is truly over, but before we dive headlong into 2023, I’d like to tell you about my best present.
It came in the shape of a little plastic card, literally my passport to Christmas. Without it, I would have been unable to travel and would have missed the Christening of our first grandchild. For this wonderful culmination to the year, I must thank my friends at KMR. KMR is one of a number of freight and logistics companies that carry everything from crates to correspondence between North Cyprus and Britain. I have used them to bring boxes of books and CDs here.
The mail system in North Cyprus can be, shall we say, haphazard, so I arranged for my new passport to be sent to my daughter in London, that she might forward it by courier. But the months dragged on and then, at the beginning of December, British postal workers went on strike. The vital card finally turned up at her address just three weeks before our proposed departure date. DHL couldn’t give a delivery guarantee in that time, so I turned to KMR. Despite the fact they had no deliveries at all planned in December, they found someone who was willing to be my carrier pigeon, and I was able to collect my passport from a man I had never met in a supermarket car park in Lefkoşa, three days before I was due to fly out! Thank you to those who saved my great day.
(Yes, I know you can get everything online these days, but it’s not the same!)