In the beauty of Ida Mountains, among trees, a dirt road with curves welcomes us with all its hospitality. We accept the invitation and start following it.
We reach Muratlar after passing two beautiful villages. We move to the way shown by a small wooden sign placed on a pole among country houses with stone walls: Yeniköy.
We are fascinated by the view of the valley lying before us while pebbles rolling under the wheels. We run into a couple of old houses near the road. When we see the garden full of labor and love, we leave the vehicle.
There are sorrels, basils, lettuces, sages, mints in the garden surrounded by stone houses. On one side of the fertile garden a wooden table stands under the sunshade. We are invited to the lunch. A pizza prepared by the people living here with the plants gathered from the earth of this place is served and we start talking.
Yeniköy Farm is founded on a land by a couple of people collectively. At present, Mustafa is taking care of this place as a permanent resident. His nickname is Balıkçı (The Fisher). He tells us about the fish he caught in the village where he lived when he was a child. He was going to fishing in the morning and going back home in the evening. That’s how he was feeding the whole family. Then he went to the city to become a civil engineer, but his longing for nature is kept in his heart. Finally he came here and settled. He answers all of our questions deeply. He shares his ideas with us in many subjects. Not only interested in his garden but also caring for all area. Standing against the gold companies who dig in the Ida Mountains, he creates a new life village by village. The seed he sows reaches the city.
Three of the people who were here when we arrive and welcomed us were volunteers. Anne-Marine and Sandra, who came via EVS, are here approximately for 1 year. One of them is from France and the other one is from Hungary. They met with each other in an eco-village they had been before. And Mahir is here. Or Halil… Actually, he is a guy you can call how you like. He loves whatever life, existence itself brings. In the circle of life, in the flow of his existence, he is in peace. He is in Yeniköy for a long time… His laughter reflects all his sincerity. While talking his body and soul communicates at the same time. He offers us whatever he can share without hesitating.
And Firuze is here. She is also a resident of Yeniköy. She converts everything we do to a game. We sing while taking down huge hay bales, and we laugh at the end of every conversation.
Then we meet Elveda, who is local here. She is like Mother Earth. Interested in everything coming from earth. Nearly every day she comes and presents her wisdom to us. And the products she made by her own hands. One of her carpets is decorating our caravan.
There are some other living beings in our daily life. Four little pussies with their parents, two dogs hugging us every time we get close, geese never leaving each other, chickens and roosters running around, an owl trying to tell something to us at night, and those who do not communicate directly; bees, ants, earth worms…
Everything happens in its natural continuum. Both life and relations. Whatever nature present at present is eaten, whatever we have is shared. Not to hurt nature we use natural soap to wash the dishes and we use an ecologic detergent we prepare to do laundry. We collect rain and we leave the water we use after filtering through oak bark, sand and pebble.
We are doing everything together all day long. In the morning we feed the cats, dogs, geese and chickens first than we prepare breakfast together for ourselves. We work in the field and garden. After the sunset, sometimes everybody stays in peace; sometimes we share a bottle of wine and the night sitting around fire.
There are visitors coming for a couple of days in Yeniköy. We sit around the table of the sun all together again. We make dye with clay, roots and plants then paint intuitionally. We witness our lives coming together from different ways.
While living like we were always here, feeling relativity of time, when we hear the call of the road we understand that the time to physically leave this place, making our lives prosperous all out, has come. This place, where we have spent 10 precious days of our lives, gives us the things that will live in our life left and our road. A lot of knowledge, emotions, and memories leave a trace in our minds, hearts and souls.
We leave Yeniköy with a lapful gift. With the hope of coming back here, going full circle.