All the stress over the past week or so, worrying if I am ever going to get back for Lou and Rhys’s wedding and the bun fight at Ercan took its toll on me! I was totally whacked. Mal knew I wasn’t myself when I didn’t even want to go shopping…usually the first thing I do when I get back to the UK!
It upsets me when I read comments from Turkish Cypriots saying how ashamed they are at the way the government is handling this, or should I say, not handling it. They have taken people’s money and then turned their backs on them. Just one comment sent in to North Cyprus Fre Press:
“The government of North Cyprus should be ashamed of itself allowing
its airline to take money from people knowing they were going
bankrupt. And now Atlasjet is not honouring the flights instead they
are treating these paid customers like animals and also selling
tickets for the same seats that the CTA customers have already paid
for. I am Turkish Cypriot and have ALWAYS supported everything Turkish
Cypriot including buying CTA flights for me and my family. Look at the
way we are being treated. We are the people who year on year come to
North Cyprus and spend our money, helping the TRNC economy. I wish I
never bothered. The worst thing is that I am being pushed to buy
flights to Larnaca to get to North Cyrus HOW SHAMEFUL IS THAT? You
people in power disgust me, you only think about yourselves, your
money your comfort but spare a thought for all your fellow Turkish
Cypriots wanting to fly out to North Cyprus, these people who pay the
money to help your floundering tourist industry. The Greek Cypriots
are laughing their heads off at your incompetence. Right now I wish I
was I was not Turkish Cypriot. The government needs to intervene and
insist Atlasjet honours all CTA flight tickets properly not on a first
come first serve basis. That is a disgusting way to treat people. Also
Atlasjet must stop selling flight tickets on planes that should be
designated to CTA ticket holders. DO SOMETHING NOW PLEASE.”
I hardly slept and was ready to leave at 5.00am!! David ran me to the airport and waited until I confirmed yes there was a flight at 10.30am, Antalya and Stansted. Thank you David!
I went to the check in desks and nobody had a clue what was going on. About six vacant check in desks and no one had a clue which ones would be used, so people queued at all the check in desks. What was to follow was not pleasant and as we all queued more and more people joined the ends of the queues. A cheer went up at 8.30am when three check in clerks appeared and took their seats. How lucky was I that I was in one of the three. Then the other people all crammed to get in the three queues. I hasten to add that at no time did they put up on the check in boards where the flight was going to or any information whatsoever. It was bedlam. I would have been about the third person in our queue to get a ticket BUT a group of TC’s pushed in, in front of us, blocking the desk and one even straddled the scales. Police were there but were doing nothing, just chatting to the ones that had pushed in. Then more cases were being passed to the people who had pushed in. I was convinced that they were checking in their entire village. I did voice my opinions to them but of course it fell on deaf ears. A dear grey haired old lady in the next queue was then being shouted at by a TC saying she had pushed in and other Brits were shouting back in her defence. I don’t think she even had the strength to queue jump. I used all my tactics learnt from queueing with TC’s at the old Ercan airport when it was every man for himself. It certainly was not a pleasant experience. The couple in front of me had a trolley and when they took their cases off it, I wedged it beside me so that no more TC’s could queue jump. What an appalling display to all the tourists trying to get a ticket home.
When I reached the desk, she didn’t even look at my reservation, I tyhink it was just getting ‘bums on seats’. I was one of the lucky ones but I heard there were about 60 people who didn’t get on. What a total shambles it was. The flight was OK and the air hostesses were very pleasant.
Of course on arriving at Stansted my hire car had been booked for Thursday, so during the flight Mal called Easycar to arrange it for two days early. They booked through Budget who didn’t have it available for the first two days, so I ended up with a Hertz car which has to be returned to the airport on Thursday and swapped for a Budget car.
I arrived at the caravan, totally shattered. A nightmare of a day but at least I am back for my son’s wedding!
The government have seriously let down so many people, knowing this would happen and still taking bookings for CTA. They are NOT making information available and no one knows what the hell is happening. Again I must thank Sheniz from Ankara Travel or I may have missed my sons wedding. Customers who supported the country’s airline have now been abandoned. It makes me wonder if the same will happen to people’s title deeds. They seem not to care a jot. Shameful.
It is fine blocking out my lack of flight back to the UK for the evening but Monday morning and reality hit again. Last week I went into Ankara Travel, even though I booked online, I spoke to Sheniz and I have to say she deserves a medal! She said to ring her on Monday, today, and she would try and let me know what was happening with the flights. I didn’t have to ring her, she rang me! The bad news, there would not be a flight leaving on Thursday…the day my ticket was booked for, but there was one on Saturday. Now I was in a real quandary of what on earth to do. Of course chats on the phone to Mal and also sorting out a ticket from Larnaca on Thursday night. I couldn’t settle to anything and couldn’t decide what to do.
Late afternoon Sheniz called me again and asked if I had anything sorted out. I said no and she replied that another flight had been put on and also there was a flight the following morning. BUT with all these flights it was not a question of booking, Atlas jet were just waiting for people to ‘turn up’. She advised to arrive at the airport early, at least three hours before the flight. A decision was made. I was leaving in the morning and so had to get house sitters, Rosie and everything else organised in a hurry. David kindly offered to run me to the airport. Here I also have to thank sincerely Sheniz who was so helpful even though I had not booked through Ankara Travel. We booked online. Having said that we are going to book with Ankara in the future. Good service needs to be rewarded!! Well, I didn’t know whether I was coming or going but finally got everything sorted out and went to bed, hardly sleeping, desperate to get any flight back!
I watched the England game in the evening…nothing to be said, they are out of the World Cup!!
Following that, Amanda invited us to drinks and food in the evening, so football finished and I went to her house. It was a lovely evening and just what I needed, a few glasses of punch and a few glasses of wine, excellent food and being waited on. The perfect hosts and a great evening, thank you Amanda, Omar and not forgetting Richard who was also looking after us so well. It was after midnight when I arrived home.
I had arranged to go on a trip to Troodos with the Foreign Residents Assocaition. I have to say I didn’t feel like going when the morning dawned as I was worried about whether I would ever get back to Lou and Rhys’s wedding. Really good if the mum of the groom didn’t make an appearance! However I went and we had a lovely day and quite honestly it took my mind off travel plans. I didn’t know we were going to a monastery and so when we arrived at Kykkos Monastery, Patti and I and several others were handed glamorous purple gowns to wear (to cover up). Troodos was as beautiful as ever. Kykkos I have visited many times before but is always worth another visit. The day reinforced the prices increase in the South…3 euros for a small cup of hot water and a tube of Nescafe to put in it!! It was a good day.
I think it is better not to say how I personally feel at this moment in time about the announcement below!!!
On 25 June Cyprus Turkish Airlines (CTA) and Cyprus Turkish Holidays Ltd ceased operations and a planned partnership between Cyprus Turkish Airlines (CTA) and Atlas Jet will now not proceed. Passengers affected are advised to seek advice in the first instance from their travel agents or tour operators regarding their position. There is no ‘help line’ available yet for passengers, but Cyprus Turkish Airlines can be contacted on the following numbers: (+90 392) 44 458 49 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting (+90 392) 44 458 49 end_of_the_skype_highlighting, 228 3901, 228 3045 or 227 1706.
It was very windy again. I had arranged to go out to lunch with Gwen. On the way we saw three puppies fending for themselves. Gwen had to go into Ankara travel and so whilst I was in there I made enquiries about CTA flights. I explained I had booked online but I have to get back for Lou and Rhys’s wedding!!! Sheniz was extremely helpful and told me to give her a call on Monday. So, I am still ‘up in the air’, no pun intended, as to what I am doing when.
Gwen and I then went on to ‘Back in Time’. They are still doing their ‘2 for 1’ meals at lunchtime and delicious they are too. We sat outside facing the stunning view of the sea. A lot of customers chose inside, because it was windy but it was far better outside. Trish and Mike were as friendly as always. Sadly they have to sell the Sports Bar due to ill health. I sincerely hope they find a buyer very soon. Mike did his usual entertaining, singing along to the 60’s music…..that took us back! If you haven’t tried ‘Back in Time’, then do, as you will not be dissapointed.
From there we went to Ileli and Gwen bought some puppy food and a bottle of water. We didn’t have a bowl for the water and so the girls in Ileli, kindly cut down a large water bottle to use, bless them. We went back and fed the puppies, it was as much as I could do not to put them all in my car and take them home. Gwen had called KAR, so hopefully they will be collected soon.
The one picture is of Gwen and the view from ‘Back in Time’ and of course the other is the puppies, the brown one has big paws so I think he is going to be quite large! Does anyone want to give one of them a home?