There's a lot of buzz here at the moment at the prospect of a likely settlement in the political talks between north and south and the re-unification of the island after 40 years. Many people believe it will happen this time because there is a lot of pressure incoming from the Americans, the UK, the UN, Turkey and the EU to get this matter sorted out. And of course money. The subtext being that if it is not sorted out then, the equal pressure to recognise the TRNC as a legitimate nation will become unstoppable. And of course the Cypriots will have lost the last chance - possibly forever - to reunite their island. Unfortunately political bigotry and religious bigotry are major obstacles to the process - or they have been in the past. And I have to say not on the Turkish side. The Greek Orthodox church and the conservative politicians in the south have a lot to answer for. However....
There has not been such a positive feeling since 2005/6 when the Annan plan was floated and the TRNC voted yes, and the Greek side voted no. The EU then scuppered all chances of negotiation by allowing the Republic of Cyprus into the EU and this kept the sides apart for the last 8 years.
So it could be an historical moment in the making. There are enormous challenges ahead: Property issues; financial; political; linguistic; religious; cultural. It will be fascinating to see if it can happen this time and will be wonderful in many ways for Cypriots although I do very much hope that it does not bring to the north the sort of over-development and spoliation that has blighted large areas of southern Cyprus. It is still so beautiful and green up here, it would be terrible to see it covered in crowded houses like say Limassol or Larnaca or even large parts of Paphos and did anyone mention Ayia Napa?????
The population has changed greatly since 1974. Many Turkish people moved here in the early years after 1974. Their children and grandchildren are Cypriots by birth. Many Turkish Cypriots who fled to London in the 1960s to escape persecution, have come back and raised their families here. There are ex-pats who have taken residency..... Both north and south have dwindling populations who actually lived in a united Cyprus. The financial crises of the past few years that hit the Republic and it's ally Greece very hard have no doubt sharpened perspectives. There seems to be a will to make it work.
Tonight we had dinner with our neighbours, Mick and Christine. A lovely evening when we ate dinner at Seveners restaurant and then back to our place of more coffee and brandy. Seveners have had a massive décor job in the last year but I have to say the food and service have probably got worse. Flashy looking but wouldn't return. Had a lovely evening nonetheless and a great catch up. We are the luckiest dogs in the world to live here.