The orange orchards

RAF Akrotiri
Akrotiri, Cyprus
January 1981

The only thing he could remember from the first day they arrived in Cyprus were the orange orchards. They made a lasting impression in his mind.

They had in all likelihood landed in a grey passenger jet at RAF Akrotiri. From there the long drive to Dhekelia. Was it a coach or a minibus? Probably a minibus. Faint memories. Gut feelings.

He looked through the bus window, excited to be in such an exotic environment for the first time in his life.

He saw flashes of orange. They were passing by orange orchards. That alone gave signal that they were in a semitropical environment now.

He had never seen oranges growing in the wild.

It was an alien world out there, and they were far away from home, from Earth's solar system. He was travelling in a small spaceship through an alien landscape.

But it was winter - January to be precise. Could oranges have been growing then? Was he mistaken?

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