We had realised fairly early on that our neighbour Mike was bored owing to the lack of internet access within the apartment building, particularly as he had been accustomed to waking late in the afternoon and spending all night, through to the wee small hours surfing the net. Subsequently, he spent every evening sat on the adjoining balcony getting fairly inebriated on the local brew whilst interrupting our private conversations with his unwelcome & often racist comments.
That said we still felt that we had been long overdue in reciprocating their hospitality, so we invited both Mike & Shirley minus Nissan the Dog to join us for an evening meal. Nissan had been chained to her kennel on the adjoining balcony and howled and barked her way throughout the evening, requiring all conversation to be carried out at maximum volume
Ahmed had spent a couple of hours preparing a traditional Turkish Banquet and I dressed the table and if I say so myself, we rocked in the hospitality department that night! First disaster of the evening, was when Mike sat down he announced that he didn’t eat “foreign c**p”. So a takeaway was duly ordered for him.
Mike then systematically made his way through our entire stock of Turkish lager whilst he and Shirley gave us the benefit of their “expert” advice on all things Turkish. Earlier in the day Ahmed had been given some English novels by a vacationing family and as Shirley was an avid bookworm, he had brought them home for her. Shirley took one look and said “no thanks I don’t do romantic chick-flick garbage”. At least two of the books had been in the bestseller list for a number of weeks so thankfully for the authors concerned a few million other readers felt differently.
As the copious amounts of Efes took effect, Mike warmed to his theme “You see the thing is once you realise that all Turks are robbing, thieving, b******s, you just have to let them know you won’t take any s**t…” Both of them smugly continued their inappropriate verbal banter, blissfully unaware that they had grievously insulted their host. Whilst Ahmed graciously attempted to engage our guests in conversation, I was contemplating removing all sharp implements from the table before I was led into temptation. I considered the likelihood of a repeat invitation and promptly decided I would rather poke my eyes out with rusty nails.
The disagreeable evening was brought to an abrupt end when Nissan, who had become totally aggrieved with the lack of attention, jumped across the dividing balcony balustrade, dragging her enormous kennel behind her. One minute we were midway through discussing the dolmus (bus) service and the next I was suffering a potentially perforated eardrum after Shirley shrieked “Durmak Nissan”! Chairs and tables were upended and food, cutlery, glasses and crockery all smashed onto the floor. Ahmed’s delicious culinary efforts lay in a messy pile but not for long as Nissan enthusiastically demonstrated that she enjoyed Turkish cuisine far more than her master; and possibly had better manners.