Monday, 3 October 2011

Turkish Delights!

Ok, I thought I'd had some weird and wonderful pets but it seems the Turks have outdone me. The excitement I got from each of these fascinating creatures really took me back to when I was young. Sadly that time has officially ended - according to National Rail.

From as far back as I have a memory, I longed for a pet like all my friends at school but my parents wouldn't let me have one so instead I kept ants, worms, newts, frogs, stick insects, catterpillas, white bait, hermit crabs, an imaginary fairy named Clatilda (she wasn't really an animal but she did ride on dragonflies for transport), a wild rabbit, (attempted a squirrel, which bit me) and a wild snake UNTIL FINALLY my parents told me if i did better at school or more specifically if I got less black dots for bad behaviour OR at LEAST wasn't the pupil with the most black dots for ONE TERM, they'd buy me an actual pet from an actual pet shop.

So at the end of term I managed to be 3rd rather than 1st for bad behaviour and when I got home there was a letter waiting for me. (Being 9, you don't get many letters, bills, bank statements etc.) When I opened it I saw it was a card in my mum's writing. On the front it read '1 voucher for' and inside she'd drawn a picture of a rabbit. I literally FREAKED OUT, i was so excited. It was the most exciting thing that had happened to me in my life so far (in my opinion). So at the weekend, my mum took me to Pet City (the stuff of dreams aged 9) and we chose a beautiful silky coated black dwarf rabbit, who I named Millie. She came home in a cardboard box with holes in, she was teeny and her ears touched the ground.

BUT Millie, rather than satiating my fascniation with animals, only left me hungry for more (Gerard Durrel didn't help either), so whenever one died, another replaced it. I think in total I had 3 rabbits, 8 hamsters (I bred them at the end of my parents bed to their horror and they had 6 babies to their further horror), 2 rats and a budgie...

And I've been begging Charlie to let me get a tortoise for a while now but he won't approve it so I"m biding my time...

Anyway, during my trip to Turkey, we encountered some WONDERFUL creatures I'd like to share with you...

Every one was unexpected!

Look who came to visit during breakfast in our hotel Atelya, in Antalya? 

Charlie fed it grapes until it spat one out. Do they eat grapes?

Next on the menu was a white rabbit but INFURIATINGLY i didn't have my camera. I was shown it by the restauranter who cooed at it, stroked it, let me stroke it, then he offered to cook it. 

Here's a picture of a similar bunny for those unimaginative among you...

I didn't eat it, in case you were wondering

One of 6 kittens hanging out on a restaurant roof terrace. Fortunately this wasn't offered up as part of our Meze.

This monkey belonged to a very fat grumpy Turkish man staying on the same sucluded beach as us in a tiny coastal village called Ecincek (pronounced Ekinchek). He had the little thing on a lead attched to him at all times, and it was forever biting at the lead and trying to escape. I've never felt so sorry for an animal. We couldn't work out which region of Turkey he was from and had to admit we hadn't seen any clambering through the trees on our way down. Finally someeone managed to translate what fatty grumpy Turk was saying - astonishingly it turned out the monkey'd been shipped all the way from Indonesia.  

As soon as we walked over to look at it, it immediately jumped from the man's back onto Charlie's arm and refused to return to its owner, who got very annoyed and thought Charlie had prompted ir to do so. (Charlie's laughing because the man is getting angrier and angrier and the monkey refuses to move.)

AND FINALLY for one of the most awe-inspiring creatures I have ever seen that made my heart leap into my mouth and stay there for several mintues.....

...this surreal and beautiful prehistoric-looking creature,  'the giant turtle'. It was around 5ft in length, and over 80-yrs-old; it swam incredibly fast and came up to snap at the dangling crab our boatman was offering him. With a mouth that looked just like a dinosaur's, it made a sound like a carraca as it snapped. I was mesmorised...

....and typically I couldn't stand back and just watch so I launched myself over the side to get closer to it. Here is a picture below of me stroking its head as it snapped at the crab just before it swam off into the deep.

When we got back to the hotel, we sat drinking delicious Efes beer and looking out to sea while I googled more about the turtles. 

One fact, we'd not banked on was that after the great white and the alliagator, these turles have the most powerful bite in the world....


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