Tipsy pink hollyhocks and faded blue thistles..

As it is newspaper time once again I set off early this morning, long before the sun cleared the hills above Pedi. Most of the hay has been cut and is drying in the fields, golden in the oblique rays of dawn. The lush show of spring has given way to tipsy pink hollyhocks and faded blue thistles. Tangles of pale bindweed straggle in the fences and the last wild campanula wilt among the lizards in the dry stone walls. But there is another quiet spectacle waiting in the wings to reward the early risers on a summer's morning.

The first sign that there is something useful amidst the straw is the sight of various locals bent double and stuffing things into blue plastic bags. No, it is not snails - those have long since sealed themselves up in their shells to survive the summer. It is the first tender shoots of the caper bushes that are attracting attention now. These are picked and brined in the same way that the buds will be prepared when they start to appear in the next week or so. Caper flowers are amazingly opulent and extremely short-lived, budding overnight and opening at dawn. Late risers would never know they existed as the delicate papery petals burn away to nothing when touched by the sun.

Yesterday's rain lasted only a few minutes on Symi but other places were not as lucky. Up in the north Thessalonika had floods. In Athens the downpours were heavy enough to disrupt traffic. Most extraordinary of all, however, was the SLEET which hit parts of Crete and laid waste large tracts of agricultural land. The weather is expected to remain changeable with widespread thundershowers and squalls over the whole of Greece for the next few days.

Have a good weekend.


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About this Blog

I sailed into Panormitis Bay, Symi, by chance one windy July day in 1993 and have been here ever since. The locals tell me that this is one of the miracles of St Michael of Panormitis. A BA graduate with majors in English, Philosophy and Classical Civilisation, the idea of living in what is to all intents and purposes an archaeological site appeals to me. Not as small as Kastellorizo, not as touristy as Rhodes, Symi is just the right size. I live on a small holding which my husband and I have reclaimed from a ruin of over-grazing and neglect and turned into a small oasis over the course of the past 22 years. I also work part-time for Symi Visitor Accommodation, helping independent travellers discover and enjoy Symi's simple pleasures for themselves.

This page is kindly sponsored by Wendy Wilcox, Symi Visitor Accommodation.

Adriana Shum

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