I have been in Arsuz, Iskenderun since last Saturday, where I am staying at my grandmother’s summer house by the seaside, with her and my aunt. This is the place I have spent all my summers since I was 15.
I was very emotional when I arrived on Saturday, since I haven’t been here for nine years. Everything seemed like it had changed in the beginning, but after spending a few days here, I’ve got my routine back. I have so many memories here. This is the place where I made my best friends, did all the crazy teenage stuff, and learned how to swim and ride a bike.
I have such clear memories from my childhood. In the early mornings we would go to the sea with the whole family. We would play games, swim far away from the coast and snorkel, spending at least an hour in the water. Then the best part of the day was having breakfast all together. My father used to buy fresh bread and newspapers before breakfast by bike. We also bought freshly-picked figs from children who came from the nearest village.
The summers are extremely warm here; it goes up to 38C (104F), and the humidity is usually more than 90%. This makes people very lazy and tired. It is not possible to do anything outside between 10:00 and 17:00. These hours provide a good opportunity to have a rest and read. I used to read at least 8-10 books every summer (or study if I had to).
I had a group of close friends that I met only in the summer, since we all came from different cities. The summer friendship was the best, because we were outdoors all the time and doing everything together: swimming, hanging out, gathering in the park or at the beach, exceeding the time limit that our families used to let us be outdoors for in the evenings, racing with bikes, singing songs, throwing parties in the garden of the houses belonging to a family. When I look back today I see that these were the best, most crazy summer memories I have.
I haven’t met up with most of the friends this year. Now we are grown up, spending most of our days busy with work, family, life, etc. Most of our neighbours have moved out. There are still some of my grandmother’s friends left here, who I am so happy to see and tell them that they haven’t changed at all. They all asked me if it was three years ago when they met me last time. When I answer ‘no, nine years’ none of them (nor me!) can believe how fast the time has passed.
It feels so wonderful to be here after all those years. When I get older I realize how beautiful my childhood memories are and I appreciate those days more. I am so glad that my family had such a place that made my summers so precious.
What kind of memories do you have from the summers of your childhood? Are you also missing those days like I do?