A Weekend retreat at the Salamis Bay Conti Resort & Casino Hotel ∼Northern Cyprus

How often have I heard people ask “Why do you need a holiday when you live in Cyprus?” Will you please cut me some slack? Everyone needs a break from their daily routine. For years my friends have been telling me about this great hotel on the northern side, which is only a 50 minute drive from my village of Oroklini on the Greek side of the island. Having got a great all inclusive deal, (£210 English pounds – via Travel republic for both of us for 3 days), we were looking forward to a relaxing long weekend.

I must admit I that my expectations were moderate as 5 stars can defer greatly, depending on the location, but I had underestimated the quality of holiday experience on offer in this lovely hotel. Our room (I am married to Derek, if you don’t know me personally or are new to my blog) is on the top floor,  and it is a family room with an extra bed. We are very happy to have the extra space and the view from the balcony is gorgeous!

The food is excellent too, with every type of salad leaf imaginable in the buffet. I spent so much time trying new and unusual looking salad dishes that I didn’t bother with any meat at all. For someone who has food allergies, like me, being able to select your own food is a godsend and I would always choose this over a formal sit down arrangement; but we are all different…

nailsI think this only the second or third time I have gone all inclusive, and I must admit it does feel a little Benidormish, having that plastic band around your wrist (spoilt – who me?)  So I decided that the best way to tackle this situation was to have my nails painted the same shade of purple  as the band in the  super health spa on the  lower ground floor. So, now that I am perfectly co-ordinated, I feel a lot better. (You can take the girl out of Hartlepool…)

Is there much to do? Well apart from a pharmacy run, as the prices of prescription medication are considerably less over here, we have just chilled out so far, but I can tell you that the dry white wine is really nice and they make a mean gin and tonic; so it’s so far so good. We are thinking we might actually do something tomorrow… but best not over-do-it eh?

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Around Oroklini ∼Lost Palms

Just taking a long, last look at my lovely row of palm trees before they are cut down. We planted them at Easter nine years ago, shortly after moving into our new home in Oroklini – a not so quiet village on the outskirts of Larnaca, Cyprus.  Unfortunately the trees adapted a little too well to the garden and have now grown so high that they are threatening  the foundations of the wall behind them and overhanging our neighbours garden, so much so, that they have reported us to the council. So the tress will have to go…

It is not the first time that we have lost a beautiful tree; our gorgeous date tree was attacked by an infestation of black beetle-like creatures called, “red palm weevil” which feasts on the roots of date palms. Unfortunately we did not even realise there was a problem until one day the huge tree collapsed sideways. We had to have it chopped down and the roots treated with poison. Dozens of huge black beetles came scurrying out – and I really mean huge! Currently palm trees are dying at an alarming rate in Cyprus due to this persistent pest, but fortunately we still have our orange, lemon and olive trees to give us fresh fruit from the garden.

Buried In The Hills – Free Promotoion

My novel, Buried In The Hills is a murder mystery set in the not-so-sleepy village of Vorokvadia, Cyprus. The fictional village is a combination of my own village Oroklini and the neighboring village of Lvadia. The photos, above, are of places which feature in my novel; it is a beautiful Cypriot village with the hills rising behind it descending to the seashore in front. The village has a lot of old world charm as well as its fair share of stories, some of which have been incorporated into this fictional story.

The village has a easy going, forgiving nature, but cross the boundaries of what is a considered to be acceptable and old style village justice may emerge, which can be just as real now as it was in the past. There is a saying in the village that “nobody knows how many bodies are buried in hills,” and that was the inspiration for this story….

The novel, which is the second featuring my detective D.I.FLynn reads as a stand alone novel – so it’s not necessary to have read the first in order to enjoy the second.

If you would like a FREE copy then please follow the links to Amazon: I  do hope you enjoy it!

Free at Amazon.com

Free at Amazon.co.uk

Praise for Buried In The Hills:

“This is a good read, folks! Fast paced and well written, held my interest to the end. Hope the author will do more with DI Flynn.”
“Brilliant”
“A great mystery”

The book is currently: 

#2,249 Free in Kindle Store (Amazon.uk)

and in the top 100 crime, mystery, thriller Amazon .com

Finikoudes – Larnaca seafront and marina before the tourists arrive!

The seafront is now bustling with tourists and the sun brollies are all up on the beach. I took a couple of pictures of Larnaca while it was quiet back in March, obviously its a lot busier now. I was told recently by a local bus driver that the promenade, Finikoudes, was named after the palm tree which is opposite the police station; I am not sure if this is true, but it is certainly a nice story!

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