NOW IT CAN BE TOLD!--Chapter 12: Cyprus to London! 4/91 DO 2767
--Storytime with Grandpa!
1. (Techi: Thank You Jesus for this time! We really pray for Grandpa, that You'll please anoint him & help us all as we have our Story, in Jesus' name, amen! Thank You Lord!) Amen! Praise the Lord!
Daily Walk, Dinner & Dancing!
2. Well, we're still in Cyprus, & as I was telling you last time, after writing Letters all day we needed to get out for some exercise, for our get-out & recreation. We'd usually have a walk to a good, fairly cheap place to eat, & after eating, if they had dancing there we would dance, which is very good exercise!--And if they didn't have dancing there, we'd go to some place where they did have dancing.--And that's where I first taught Mama how to dance! There was one particular place which at this non-tourist time of year was pretty empty, so we didn't have to be embarrassed or worry about a lot of people watching as I was teaching her how to dance. It was sort of a cave or cavern--it was made to look like that, at least--& they had a little orchestra.
3. (David: What kind of music did they play?) Nearly all the music, in all the places there, was Gypsy music! Typical Greek music is influenced by Gypsy music, just like Spanish music also sounds very Gypsy. So the Greek music was very Gypsy-sounding. There were only a few numbers that were really really Greek, some of those dances where they all put their arms across each others' shoulders in a line & dance like they did in the movie "Zorba the Greek." That was a good sample of what Greek music is like. I forgot to tell you before, but on the ship we went to Haifa on, almost every night downstairs on the boat they had dancing, & Greek music was very popular.
4. Anyhow, here we are in Varosha, the modern Greek city outside of Famagusta, & Mama & I would go for our daily walk, dinner & dancing. That way we kept in good shape physically & stayed healthy. Mama often spent the day sitting typing while I was usually striding back & forth across the room dictating, waving my arms, just like I had an audience! And that's where we got some of those fiery Letters of those days! (Techi: Like those cute cartoons in some of the Letters of you walking around the room!) Yes, that's the way it was!
5. We really had a good time in Cyprus. Dear Thomas took us around to quite a few places & introduced us to people & took us out to dinner, for which we were very thankful in those days because we were very short of money.
An Underground Apartment!
6. Let's see if I can remember anything more about Cyprus. I can remember walking along & seeing sort of a cave house that was for rent. It was sort of underground, but the walls were all panelled & it had rooms & furniture & a kitchen & everything! It looked like it would be pretty cheap & we found out it was only $45 a month, which comes to only about $1.50 a day! (Techi: It was a house?) Yes, an apartment sort of dug into the cliff. (Techi: You mean there were rocks on the sides?) Yes, there was rock all around it. (Techi: And you could see the rock?) Well, they had lined it pretty much with wooden panels, etc.
Visits in Limassol!
7. I can't think of anything else outstanding that happened there besides our visit to Kyrenia to find the "Mountain Island Villa" that I had dreamed about! (ML#21.) We were determined to try to find it, but before we did that, we heard that we had a boy in the Family whose father & mother lived in Limassol, on the Southern coast of Cyprus. On our way to Haifa the boat had stopped there, but we didn't get off.
8. But now we took a bus from Famagusta to Limassol, because we heard news from home that this boy's father was concerned about him & they'd like to have some news from him. So we went there in person to visit his father. We thought it would be interesting to visit a Greek home like that, & it was. Actually, his father had left the day before for Beirut, but we were able to have a good visit with his Uncle & Aunt.
9. I remember they served us some of that nice demitasse coffee. It's very strong black coffee served in a little tiny cup. "Demitasse" literally means "half-cup" in French. These cups weren't even as big as half a cup, they were so tiny. So we drank a couple of cups of that coffee, & by the time you drink a couple of those, you get so pepped up you can almost fly! I remember when I was in Cuba I drank five cups of that coffee one night before I really knew how strong it was! So when Eve said, "It's time to catch the bus home," I said, "Who needs a bus?--I could fly!"--Ha! That coffee was so strong!
10. Anyhow, this sweet old couple served us this thick coffee & we had a couple of cups. I think it was Mama's first time to drink it. We told them that their nephew was fine & doing well & they were very happy to get news about him.
11. But the most important thing that happened that day was our visit with the Gypsies! We had seen their tents pitched in the fields on the way to see this boy's relatives, so after we finished our visit with them, we asked our taxi driver to take us out to see the Gypsies!--And you can read all about our fascinating experience meeting with them in the Letter "Gypsies!" (ML#61)
Jeth & Deb's Troubles!--And Bus to Nicosia!
12. When our three months were almost up, we had to decide whether or not to try to apply for an extension of our visa for another three months, or leave Cyprus. And about that time we heard that Deb & Jeth were having real trouble in the States between themselves that was really hurting the Work & about to divide it. People were writing to us about it, saying that we needed to come back & straighten them out.
13. (Techi: What were they squabbling about?) Oh, their marriage was going on the rocks, for one thing.--And Jeth, of course, was upset about it, because they had about five children by that time. (Techi: Goodness! She was very productive, wasn't she?) She's had 10 or 11 by now. (Techi: That's a lot of kids, Grandpa!) For a little frail, delicate, skinny woman like she was, it was amazing, really amazing! (Techi: It's a shame they all had to turn out bad.) Yes, it is sad. Well, that was their parents' fault. When the parents backslide, the children usually backslide too; although we've had some cases where the kids stuck with us! On the other hand, we've had kids that backslid & their parents stuck!
14. Well, we had to make up our minds about going because our time was getting short. We only had a few more days on our visa, & I just had to go & see if that mansion was actually there on the cliffs of Kyrenia as I'd seen in my dream. So one Sunday morning we took a bus to Nicosia, which is the capital city of Cyprus.
15. All the way along we had to stop at these various Turkish enclaves. An "enclave" is a little area surrounded by another, bigger area where different people live. They had little Turkish villages, or enclaves, that were surrounded by Greeks. So if our bus went through a little village that was still Turkish, the Turks would stop the bus & check the passengers, a very light inspection. They had their own police in these Turkish villages, & one of their policemen would then escort us to the exit gate at the other end of town. It was quite interesting. They had to have themselves guarded day & night, otherwise they figured the Greeks might attack'm.
Visit to Kyrenia!
16. Anyhow, it was only a few days until our visa was up & we decided we couldn't stay any longer, we had to start back to the U.S. to straighten Deb & Jeth out. But I had to see Kyrenia first. Shall I show it to you on the map? From Nicosia we went North to the coast, & then we came back along the coast towards Kyrenia. It was a beautiful ride!
17. I'll never forget the scene as the bus came down into the city. The port was way down along the coast, kind of a circular port, and I thought, "Boy, that certainly looks familiar!" But it wasn't until we went to the top of the big castle that was there that I recognised that this was the very place I'd dreamed about! The port of Kyrenia was just a few yards from the walls of the fort, this big old castle which you had to pay 25 cents to get into to see all the old fortifications & exhibits, like a museum. Mama & I went up on top, & as we were looking back on the harbour, there it was exactly as I had seen it in the dream! I even saw the boat docked there in the harbour that had been in my dream! Isn't that amazing? (David: Wow!) (Techi: That must have been pretty neat!)
18. So then I knew that this woman's villa must be nearby, east of the port! We didn't know her name or the name of the place, but I knew what she looked like because I'd seen her in the dream! I knew that she spoke English with an accent, & that she was an older lady, about 50 or 55, with short blonde hair.--Which, of course, was very unusual amongst the Greeks, & even more unusual amongst the Turks. There were both Greeks & Turks around Kyrenia. Actually, Kyrenia is all Turkish now. After mainland Turkey invaded Cyprus in 1974, all the area around Kyrenia, clear across to Famagusta became Turkish only. (Techi: All this top part?) Yes, & all this on the bottom stayed Greek only. (Techi: So this lady at Mountain Island Villa wasn't Turkish, was she?) Oh, no, no, she was Jewish. (Techi: Was she actually from Israel, or was she from Britain or somewhere else?) She was born in Russia, but she had been reared in Israel since she was a little girl.
19. So we decided to take a taxi & drive up the coast in the direction I knew the villa to be, but the taxi driver kept insisting that there were no villas along the coast on this side of Kyrenia. Finally I knew we had gone too far up the coast, so we stopped at a caf & asked the manager if he knew of anyone who fit the description of the lady. And he said yes, there was a foreign lady that lived about three miles down the coast, East of Kyrenia. I said, "In a villa right on the cliff overlooking the sea?" And he said, "Yes, that's where she lives!" So he explained to the taxi driver how to get there, & off we went! Here we were going on the strength of a dream, think of that, just by faith that we would find her!
20. And the taxi driver took us right to her villa! We went along the main highway quite a ways, & then we went off on this little side road that led out to her villa on the beach. And can you imagine our feelings as we went up to knock on the door? (David: Yes, really!) When she came to the door we introduced ourselves, & in those days I'd say I was a teacher & this is my wife, etc.--Because I was, really, & always have been. And the rest of that story you'll find in the Letter "Mountain Island Villa Found" (ML #63), so I don't know whether I need to tell you all about it here.
21. She very hospitably invited us in & offered us tea. Imagine, this was about ten o'clock at night! We'd arrived in Kyrenia in the late afternoon & then we'd eaten lunch, as we hadn't eaten all day, so it was already dusk as we'd set out looking for the villa. I had told the taxi driver to wait until we made sure it was the right place, so he waited out there until Mama went out & told him he could go.
22. So we had quite an interesting visit with this lady, Mrs. Goldstein. (Techi: Did the taxi driver speak English?) Nearly everybody in that kind of business who deals with tourists speaks a little bit of English--not much, but a little, enough to get around. And you'll find the whole story in "Mountain Island Villa Found" if you want to read all about it, & with more accurate memories than I have now!
23. She had a friend there visiting with her at that point, a French woman named Nicole, & she was fascinated by our story when we finally confessed that we were there because of a dream I had had & I just had to come & meet her. The French woman piped up & said, "Oh, you mean something like deja vu?" "Deja vu" is a sort of a feeling that you've been someplace before, kind of a slippage of time from one time to another. So she thought I had had a "deja vu" experience, & I figured if that explanation satisfied her, it was all right with me!
24. But I told her it was a dream & I still didn't know what we were there for, or why I'd had this dream. Later when we were alone with Mrs. Goldstein I asked her, "Do you have any idea why I had this dream?" At first she said, "No, I can't imagine." But by the time we left she had tears in her eyes & she said, "I've been having a very hard time making a decision, & I think you came here for my sake. I was teaching school in Israel but then the war came & I didn't feel safe there & I left, & my husband & I came over here. But since then he died here & I've been very lonely, & I've been wondering if I should go back to Israel & teach school again. I think that's what I'm supposed to do." She came to that conviction while we were talking about our young people & how I was a teacher. Apparently God was speaking to her heart to go back & take up the sacrificial service of teaching again.
25. It was mutually agreed that it certainly was God's plan that I should have come & met her, & her us, & it helped encourage her faith to go back & teach school. Later on, some of our folks visited Cyprus & wanted to meet her, but found that she had already moved back to Israel.
26. Oh, & she sang that song about David in the cave, "Awake, thy people need thee," etc. (David: Really?!) Yes! She sang a little song, it was a little sort of a dance tune. It was cute, she got up & sang it. And oh, I'm telling you, I nearly exploded in tongues & prophecy, because that was like the voice of the Lord! "David, awake from thy sleep within the hidden cave!" In other words, "You're needed to lead your people." (Techi: Why did she sing that song?) Because it was about David. (Techi: She knew your name was David?) Yes. (Techi: And did she know you were supposed to lead like that?) She didn't know anything about it, no. She didn't see the meaning of it at all like I did. She did say, "Maybe there is something you're supposed to do." I told her, "That sure speaks to me. It means a lot to me!"
27. Anyhow, it was quite late at night by this time, about midnight, & there was hardly any chance of calling a taxi clear out there in the country, if they could have even found the place. So she insisted on taking us back to Kyrenia in her car to a little hotel there, & saw to it that they had a room for us before she left us, & drove back alone. I told her I was very sorry she had to drive back alone but she said, "Oh, it's nothing, it's not far."
28. We were so thankful to be accepted in that hotel. We didn't know how the hotels away from the tourist areas were, whether they were particular about whether you were married or not like they were in Israel. The Israelis are so self-righteous! So we were relieved that they accepted us. We had a very nice room & Mrs. Goldstein said we could come back in the morning & take pictures & meet some of her friends. So the next morning she drove back in to Kyrenia to pick us up.
29. There was also something about a boat in the original dream, I can't remember it all, & she said, "Yes, I did have a sailboat, but I sold it just a few days ago." That was the boat I recognised when we first arrived in Kyrenia, docked right there in the harbour. So the next morning she took us to meet the boy she had sold it to, an American hippie, & he also was very interested in our story.
30. The next morning we were in a hurry to get back to Famagusta, & I think maybe we even took a taxi from Kyrenia to Nicosia instead of a bus, because it wasn't very far. We ate breakfast in a nice big hotel in Nicosia which was occupied by the overseeing United Nations troops that they had in several different places in Cyprus to keep the Turks & the Greeks apart. I think they call them "peacekeeping troops," & they all wore those pretty little blue berets. They were real nice guys, most of them either British or Scandinavian.
From Cyprus to London!
31. So we had time to eat & then we caught the bus directly to Famagusta where we spent the evening packing & getting ready to go, because the next boat, a small Italian liner, was leaving the next evening! We couldn't afford to take a plane, but the boats were much cheaper. I think they said they didn't know whether there were any reservations left or not, but that we would just have to get on the boat & take our chances. So we really prayed, & thank God we got this lovely, luxurious stateroom with twin beds & a dresser with a big mirror. It was beautiful!--And two outside portholes!
32. I'll show you our route on the map. The boat went from Famagusta, stopped in Limassol to pick up & discharge passengers, & then it stopped at the Greek island of Rhodes too, but we didn't get off. Rhodes is this little island right here off the coast of Turkey. Paul talks about stopping there in his travels. (David: Yes, I remember!) (See Acts 21:1.)
33. From Rhodes we sailed up through all these little Greek islands until we got to Piraeus, the port for Athens, then back through the Corinthian Canal into the Ionian Sea. Then instead of sailing up into the Adriatic Sea like we did the first time, this time we sailed through the Straits of Messina, this little channel that cuts between the very toe of the "boot" of Italy & the island of Sicily. See it here on the map? We then sailed around the volcanic island of Stromboli during the night, & the Lord gave us a thrilling fireworks display! We docked at Naples, Italy, on Easter Sunday, then sailed on up to the port of Genova.
34. We were on the boat for five days & nights, & then took trains from Genova through the Alps & France up to the port of Calais. I remember getting there in the afternoon just in time to catch a ferry across to Dover again, & then a train into London. (Techi: That's the same way that you went before.) Right! So we knew this route pretty well. We caught the ferry to Dover & a train to London & came into Victoria Station, which is the central London station, the biggest, & where the hippies were sleeping all over the floor! (For more exciting & interesting details of Dad's Trip from Cyprus to London, read ML#68, "Personal Answers III!")
Alone in London!
35. And, oh! I forgot to tell you something very important! While at sea, clear back on this route, the day that we were coming toward Genova, we called by radio telephone from the ship's radio room, & we tried to get in touch with our former landlady, Mrs. Sieben, the one we had first stayed with in London. She told us on the radio telephone, "I'm full up now, but you can call me when you get here & I may have a vacancy."
36. So when we got to Victoria Station, I tried to give her a call, but the phone wouldn't work, & since all our luggage was already loaded into a taxi, we just went ahead by faith to her house. We thought, "Well, maybe when she sees us & all our luggage she'll make room for us!"
37. So when we arrived, we got out of the cab & had him help us to the front door with all of our luggage, & there we stood! We rang the bell & Mrs. Sieben came to the door & she said, "Oh, my! I don't have a bed to sleep you on, nothing!" She said we could try Mama Helen, the lady next door, but she wasn't home. We learned later she was in Majorca on a holiday. So I asked her if we could just leave our luggage in the hall until we found a place, & she said yes, that was okay. So we left our luggage in the hall & we began knocking on doors in the neighbourhood.
38. And that was one of the most disappointing, discouraging times we ever had on the whole trip, trying to find a room in London. See, by now it was getting closer to Summertime & all the tourists were coming & the boarding houses were full up. And that's where I'm going to have to leave you tonight because we're five minutes overtime already. So praise the Lord! It was a miracle what the Lord did for us, & I'll tell you about that tomorrow night. OK? Amen! Do you want to close in prayer, Son?
39. (David: Amen, thank You Jesus for our good class tonight! Thank You for all that we learned, Jesus. Thank You for Grandpa & his taking the time to tell us these stories which are so interesting & teach us so much. So thank You so much for that, Lord!--In Jesus' name, amen!) Amen! God bless you!
Picture Captions & fact boxes:
Prophet meets Gypsies in Cyprus!
Kyrenia Marina, Cyprus.
Mountain Island Villa found!
1. Boat leaves from Famagusta. 2. Stop in Limassol to pick up & discharge passengers. 3. Stop at the Greek island of Rhodes. 4. Stop at Piraeus, the port for Athens, then back through the Corinthian Canal into the Ionian Sea. 5. Sailing through the Strait of Messina. 6. Stop at Naples, Italy, on Easter Sunday. 7. Landed at the port of Genova where we took trains through the Alps & France up to the port of Calais & crossed the English Channel to get to London.
Volcanic island of Stromboli
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