Two Months in Summer

Demo

During the war-torn summer of 1974 in Cyprus, Sally tries to rescue her husband, unjustly imprisoned in a far corner of the country. As she tries to locate him, the island is steadily torn apart by the invading forces of the Turkish army, making refugees of thousands of the population as they flee their homes in terror.

As Sally battles to get her husband released, after his arrest during the military coup, she is thwarted time and again, either by the terrorists who attempt to kill her or the relentless march of the Turkish Army as they invade and capture the whole of the north of the island where her husband is locked up.

A gripping fictional story of love and separation, inspired by personal, political and historical events, set within two months of major upheaval in the Mediterranean paradise of Cyprus.

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Memories of Cyprus

Published: Tuesday, 03 May 2016

CyprusSince I left Cyprus in 1977 after my  Cypriot husband died, I have only been back a couple of times in the last few years to see my sister who has been ill off and on with cancer. Our temperament and lives have been very different.  But since we both acquired an Ipad three years ago we have had a regular Sunday morning  session on Facetime. She has live alone way up a mountain behind Limassol in a small typical Cypriot stone built village. As she has always been rather shy she is a loner and is quite happy in this quiet unstressful place, surrounded by a menagerie of animals, a horse a dog, cats, a parrot, tortoises and chickens. Oh yes, I forgot the goldfish.

old paphosInfact, life up there is still very similar to the way it was in the nineteen sixties and seventies at the time my story was set. The only difference now is, that the typical village tavern where the old men of the  village would meet for their coffee and brandies  and noisy political conversations, has been discovered as a hidden gem where authentic Cypriot home cooking is still served. With its slatted cane ceiling, walls adorned with ancient farming implements, old straight  backed wooden chairs  and checked cloths covering the tables, it has become famous for its original old style feel and its tasty food.

The city folk from Nicosia and Limassol flock en-mass  up  the mountain to have a delicious Cypriot Meze lunch on Sundays in the summer to  escape the heat. But, apart from the  narrow cobbled streets choked with visitors parked cars, life goes on in the village as it always has.

So, I was amazed to read a two page spread in a Sunday newspaper recently about Cyprus. It seemed to be talking about a completely different place to the one I knew and wrote about in my novel.

Paphos harbour was the most romantic peaceful place on the whole island, where my husband and I would go for languorous weekends (See chapter 10 of my story). It was far away from the main towns with just the locals going about their business in the small town up the hill. And a few intrepid cultural seeking visitors eager to discover the finest preserved mosaics situated in the ruins of a Roman villa by the harbour and the 3rd century BC necropolis known as the Tombs of the kings a short distance away.

In those days, down by the little harbour, there were just two open topped ‘tavernas’, the tables and chair sitting by the edge of the sea They served delicious fish caught that morning and wonderful wine made in the owners own vineyards. And, as if that wasn’t enough, two rescued pelicans had made their home there and waddled around clacking their huge beaks, gobbling down the scraps of fish that we threw to them. All this pleasure, under a dark velvet sky sprinkled with stars. Magical!

Now Paphos harbour is full of fast food restaurants and souvenir shops, milling with thousands of tourists sitting around drinking beer and coffee. The romance has gone now and it is just like any other tourist holiday destination.