Sep 182012

Patara, Turkey

I’ve just got back from Turkey, where I was mostly horizontal. I find it really hard to sit cross-legged on low cushions, so I had to recline even when I wasn’t on a lounger/beach towel/bed. I probably lost the use of some key sitting muscles as a result, and I may have to ask my boss if we can reconfigure the office to include a day bed or chaise longue from which I can work.

Some of my reclining took place on this Ottoman-style terrace at the Patara Viewpoint Hotel. Apparently such terraces are mostly used in winter and are often used to heat houses, but every night in summer, Muzaffer, the hotel’s owner, lights a cedarwood fire on his for guests to enjoy. Cedar wood has a lovely, spicy scent and, according to Muzaffer, it keeps mosquitoes away too. The terrace is the perfect spot for gazing at the stars.

The combination of fire and stars is a powerful and mesmerising one, and something most of us rarely experience.

Clearly an Ottoman terrace is not an option for the average British semi, but it struck me that most of us are free to enjoy a firepit, woodburning stove or chiminea, some old cushions and a blanket or two. It would be infinitely more fulfilling than a TV, sofa and permanently glowing iPhone.


PS: For more on Turkish lounging, see here