Korek, detail

I have been painting dried korek stalks for a while now, big ones and small ones, long ones and short ones. I had imagined placing them in various locations and photographing them so today I gave that a shot. Unfortunately, the weather was hot and muggy and somewhat overcast, not too auspicious for photography. I had wanted to see what the painted stalks looked like against the blue sky and the background of the valley so I arranged them along my terrace wall, pressed against the cement by a disused, rickety wooden sun lounger. I also visualized seeing them suspended, somehow. In order to try this out, I ran a length of string from a tree to a cement post in front of the pond next to the amphitheatre. I then attached the 14 stalks with smaller bits of string to this clothes-line-like apparatus. As mentioned, the weather conditions were not optimum but I did like the way they looked suspended beside the pool with the valley in the background. I will leave them hanging overnight and hope that it will neither rain nor be too windy and that they will still be suspended there tomorrow.

Last night I had dinner at one of the fish restaurants on the beach with Ayla, the French language guide from the Ephesus trip. She took the minibus out from Bodrum to meet me and we had lots of laughs while drinking a couple of glasses of Turkey’s national aniseed drink, Raki, and nibbling on tiny fried red fish. Ayla is a Turk from Istanbul who learned how to speak French in Switzerland, became a guide, and guided the rich and famous around Turkey and to Europe for the past 30 years. Recently widowed, she returned to guiding from a hiatus in order to recover from losing her husband. She is a really delightful woman and I thoroughly enjoyed our evening.

See korek pictures here.