Planning for the Year Ahead

It is a calm cloudy day on Symi with a thin veil of mist masking the distant shores of Turkey and Asia Minor. The nights have been quite spectacular recently with the full moon rising over Pedi bay and the fishing boats have been going out in the evenings. Temperatures on Symi are still between 7 and 15 degrees centigrade but higher than that in sunny places out of the wind. At this time of the year it really makes a huge difference where your accommodation is located – a chill wind can be whistling round the windmills and the Kali Strata dripping with dew while Mavrovouni is bright in the sun and people on the south-facing side of Harani are sun-bathing on their balconies.
Symi is still very quiet as many businesses don’t reopen until April or May and with at least another month of wet and windy weather ahead of us there is little point in doing much outside preparation. January is usually the time for planning for the year ahead. This is the month when business owners decide how they are going to reinvent themselves for the forthcoming season, catalogues are perused and stock ordered.
The almond trees in the Pedi valley are slowly coming into flower – with the relatively mild winter we have had many did not even fully lose their leaves this year. The lemon and orange trees are heavy with ripening fruit. This year the Symi oranges are sweeter than usual thanks to the September rains. Some years they are so bitter they are even too harsh to make marmalade. Not that the Greeks make marmalade, of course. The usual use for bitter oranges here is to make so-called spoon sweets, sticky preserves of candied peel in syrup which are served by the spoonful (hence the name) with an accompanying glass of iced water either in the afternoon after the siesta or at the end of a meal. Spoon sweets are also made from immature almonds when the nutshells are still soft, tiny aubergines, rose petals – anything that can be candied in syrup.

Have a peaceful week.



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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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