Slick with Snails

It is a damp and drizzly November day.  The gale force north easterly winds and plunging temperatures that have disrupted weekend shipping and sent everyone in Greece in search of winter woollies have largely passed Symi by.  Instead we have had little wind and persistent rainy weather with 20 mm recorded over the past 24 hours.  The weather is expected to clear by midday on Tuesday with temperatures remaining in the mid to low teens for the rest of the week.  Walking down to the office this morning in the rain, the wet stones of the Kali Strata were slick with snails and I did not pass a single person.

In the three weeks that I have been away the island has slipped into winter mode.  There are very few people on the streets, many businesses have closed for the winter and the ferry schedules have reached an all time low, with boats only running between Symi and Rhodes at weekends.  This means that anyone who has any business to do in Rhodes is forced to spend the night there – or the best part of a week if the job in hand cannot be completed before the departure of the Blue Star Diagoras at 16.00 on Monday afternoons.  At a time when everyone is counting the pennies this is very expensive and may make the difference between people being able to afford to go to Rhodes for essential medical treatment that can only be done there or going without. It also means that getting essential foodstuffs and commodities onto Symi has become very difficult. At the moment everyone’s hopes are pinned on the Panagia Skiadeni, Dodecanese Seaways’ new car ferry, which had an outing for the Panormitis Festival but has remained firmly in Kolonna ever since. There is also a rumour that the Proteus may be staging a comeback but it is too soon to tell if this is just wishful thinking.

Following in the footsteps of Greece’s Finance Minister, Mr Venezelos, who raised VAT on spinach pies to 23% but left it at 13% on custard pies, work on the new Symi cake shop in the lane next to the Symi Visitor Accommodation office is proceeding apace.  Our office is reverberating with drills and hammers and we are looking forward to the day when the work is finished and we can enjoy the aromas of freshly baked cakes instead.  Let them eat cake indeed.

Have a good week.


Kojak –   – (Monday, November 14, 2011)  

They were working into the night on the Panaghia Skiadeni when we first passed through Rhodes, and again when we overnighted on the way back. I think they got it fit for Panormitis but still need to do some work to finish it.

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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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