One of the most unique aspects of living in the Village is knowing that the freshest of fruit and vegetables, straight from the farm, can be found just by walking out my front door. Yes the horse and cart is a mainstay of village life here in the Village and each day I am inundated with vendor’s selling everything from fruit and vegetables and fresh milk (yes I have found a supplier) as well as being utilised to transfer firewood and charcoal, agricultural day workers, and even, on occasion, kids to and from school. Basically, the horse and cart are an integral part of my life.
For us Turkish housewives (which I am calling myself now despite not being Turkish nor a particularly good housewife) having the vendors come to you door means that we, who are extremely busy keeping our homes spotless, working in the farms and feeding our families (none of which I am doing but I stand by my statement that I am a Turkish housewife), do not need to leave our homes to shop and everything will come past at some stage over the course of the week. This means I get the freshest of fruit and vegetables while practicing my inadequate Turkish on the vendor. I am a source of amusement for the vendors too as I try and purchase their goods and negotiate the price all the while trying to control My Hurley Dog who, due to the fact that he has Small Dog Syndrome, hates every animal on site that is bigger than him. I am quite sure I am one of the highlights of their day.
With the change of Government from CHP to MHP in Mersin one of the first laws brought in by the new Government is outlawing the horse and cart as the Government body believe that they are inhumane and outdated (and they poop everywhere). Sure no one likes horse poop outside their front door but what happens to the horses I questioned? Sadly (and definitely even more inhumane) many of them have been sold for food but a few others are put out to pasture to live the rest of their life peacefully after all they have worked hard every day pulling their owner’s cart through rain, hail, snow and extreme heat.
And what are out options now for daily deliveries? This morning a small tractor pulled up outside with a cart attached with fruit and vegetables. The vendor tells me (via a lot of hand gestures and laughter) that the cost is higher now (as I found when I purchased some muz) as he has to pay for diesel. Also stopping by was the vendor that usually sells kitchen and household goods. He has purchased an old motorbike with a cart on the back. It was apparently very expensive to purchase and sadly he had to sell his old horse to pay for it. Poor thing.
Loving this blog? Please help me build my audience and share with like minded people who, like you, wish for the return of the horse and cart and love Turkey. You can also subscribe or like me on Facebook for all updates.