Freda Baker (now FredaSkelton)

Life in Turkey

Fred Skelton in 2004In 2002, we moved out here to live in Altinkum, Didim.  At first we decided not to work as we were enjoying both our retirement and the novelty of not having to drag ourselves to work in Northampton every morning.  However, after two years here we were asked if we would like to take over a bar on a brand new holiday complex for the English.

After considering the offer we decided to give it a go and it has been a great experience.  However the hot summer days working in the kitchen at the bar almost killed me.  I was responsible for all the cooking and it was very hard. I took every opportunity to jump in the pool to cool off.  Anyway, as they say “If you can’t stand the heat” so this year we employed a Turkish chef which is much better. I still work in the bar, two evenings a week organizing the entertainment, quiz night and party night, which are always a great success.

This year my husband has continued with the bar and I am working for a local property developer selling houses to the English and I enjoy every minute of it.

Living in Turkey is much different to the UK; no rushing around and sun everyday from May to October.

The Turkish people are very friendly and polite, the English could definitely learn a thing or two from them.  They always expect you to share their food and drink if you are visiting, even if they have very little for themselves.

In Turkey the wages are very low unless you own your own business, it is difficult to earn enough for a decent lifestyle, a car is a luxury as petrol is the same price as England but a Turkish man would be lucky to earn £100 per week.  Most earn less than this, around £50 per week.  The cost of living is much cheaper here although house prices are going up due to the English invasion.

I am very lucky I live 2 minutes from the sea, 1 hour from Ephesus, 15mins from the Temple of Apollo and 25 minutes from Priene and Miletos.  When I walk home from work, it is 15 minutes along the cliff tops, looking across the bay at the boats bobbing about on the Aegean, the sunsets are beautiful.

I have never regretted moving to Turkey although I miss my family, but with one of my children in Australia and another in Japan it makes me realise what a small place the world is and how lucky we are to be able visit these places.

Freda Skelton (nee Baker)
Trinity 1958-63

Fred with "her little helper" Muserref, a Turkish girl who is learning English and right the bar and swimming pool Freda in the Jacuzzi at the complex in 2004
The Tower Revisited  - The website for former Pupils of the Technical High School, Trinity High School & Trinity Grammar School, Northampton