…that’s our trouble.

Never one to miss a trick, a businessman from Istanbul bought up the old village around the harbour for a song and then flogged off most of it in job lots to other big city sophisticates. As a result it developed into a Turkish Fiskardo with a surprising prevalence of upmarket bars and restaurants. It has also built up a reasonably large expatriate community. There seems to be so much competition though that prices aren’t quite as eye-watering as those in Fiskardo.

The harbour charges, however, are distinctly cheeky. It’s 30 Turkish Lira a night for the boat, plus 15 lira for electricity and 5 lira for water. This means that you could end up paying 50 lira (=25 euros = £20) a night all in. That’s more than Finike marina, which supplies electricity and water as well as free toilets, showers, and a meeting room and library. Here you have to pay 5 lira for a shower and 50 cents to go to the toilet! You can’t use your own facilities either as they impose draconian fines on anyone discharging toilets, shower water or even washing up liquid into the harbour. On top of that there are no stern moorings and you have to go bows to and lay out your stern anchor. No competition you see – there may be hundreds of bars and restaurants, but there’s only one harbour. What’s happening to me? I’m turning into a Telegraph leader writer. Help me!

The harbour is tiny as well as expensive and it took a bit of manoeuvring to get Birvidik in. After smugly congratulating ourselves on our advanced boat handling skills we were put to shame by the captain of a gulet four times our size who swung into the harbour at speed, executed a handbrake turn and slotted neatly into a space barely larger than the boat. Bloody show off.

We’re marking time until we can renew our visas on the 21st of September or thereabouts. For that we need to be in Kas, so we’ll probably stay here another week and then make our way East again. Note to Kevin – Kalkan is a lovely place it’s true, but it’s shut in the winter.

While here Bob has renewed his dive qualification, the papers for which were lost in the infamous Feline St. Valentine’s Day Arson Massacre of 2001. This involved three days out boat diving, enormous expenditure and the purchase of a new dive computer, the old one having failed to meet one of the primary specifications desirable in such a device, namely being waterproof.

We also took a day out canoeing downriver. This involved about 14 clueless Brits, including us, the tour manager, assorted lads aged between 14 & 19 and about 10 canoes that looked as if they’d been built from modified plans for a Sherman Tank. The day was interspersed with rapids shooting, lunch, Turkish massages and mudbaths. As the 14 punters included 5 very attractive young women, ages ranging from about 17 to 22, the lads had a field day.

“Now let me see Boss, according to this job description I have to canoe downriver with a load of attractive girls in bikinis, give them massages and smear mud all over them?
And I get paid?
Where do I sign?”

I wonder how many of them enquired about the pension plan.

Originally written for birvidik