They do say patience is a virtue — well, by now we’re all feeling pretty virtuous.

Last night, after supper and an evening walk for the dogs, Animalcouriers had to leave the van at Mersin port in police custody and go to the nearest hotel. This morning we were back at the port bright and early.

A new police shift had appeared and were initially reluctant to let us into the port. “No ticket, no come in,” they said. Then the friendly officers who’d kept a watchful eye on the van overnight appeared, greeting us with: “Good morning! Tea?” So in we went and had a quick cuppa with them, before heading off to the van to feed, water and walk the dogs.

Then at round 10.00am, as we’d had no news, we went to the port officer to check whether the computer entry problem (letter O and number zero confusion) had been sorted out. Well, at least they had a new permutation by now: instead of double O, they had double zero. So still not quite right (should have been letter O, number zero) but at least we knew change was possible. The senior port office on duty, Aynur, got straight on the phone and harrassed the port manager to do something about it. Then Eren from Petical Vets showed up and between him and Aynur they got things moving.

The port manager explained that while he and his colleagues are port staff, customs are civil servants and can start work when they like. They showed up at 11.00am.

Eventually everything was sorted out, and suddenly we were free to go! We are heading for Fetiye where we have a hotel booked for tonight.

Morning Mum! says Reo

Morning Mum! says Reo

Brandy watches the boats come and go

Brandy watches the boats come and go

Jasper is a cool dude who doesn't have the first idea what stress means!

Jasper is a cool dude who doesn’t have the first idea what stress means!

Tink enjoys the fresh air

Tink enjoys the fresh air

Roxy out with courier M

Roxy out with courier M

Roxy and Tink have a quick chat. Yes, we're very good at ports now, they agree

Roxy and Tink have a quick chat. Yes, we’re very good at ports now, they agree

Jasper and Tink know all about sitting for a biscuit

Jasper and Tink know all about sitting for a biscuit

Entrance to the port of Mersin

Entrance to the port of Mersin

From left to right: one of the friendly, helpful police officers, the amazingly effective port officer Aynur, and the doughty Eren from Petical Vets

From left to right: one of the friendly, helpful police officers, the amazingly effective port officer Aynur, and the doughty Eren from Petical Vets

While we were waiting, this 15-seater minibus turned up and disgorged 33 passengers!

While we were waiting, this 15-seater minibus turned up and disgorged 33 passengers!

As the gates slide back to let us out, our heroes Eren and the port officer stand by

As the gates slide back to let us out, our heroes Eren and Aynur stand by

Once on the road, we can see it's watermelon season here in Turkey

Once on the road, we can see it’s watermelon season here in Turkey

We passed a beautiful stone mosque

We passed a beautiful stone mosque

And a truck that seemed to be wearing a wig (Donald Truck?)

And a truck that seemed to be wearing a wig (Donald Truck?)