>> Monday, November 10, 2014 – Life on Symi in November, November weather, Panormitis Festival, winter ferries
|The carpet sellers, at the entrance to Panormitis monastery. The building on the left, just inside the gates, is a taverna with accommodation above.|
|Handmade baskets for sale next to the memorial to the Abbot and the Allied soldiers who were killed in the Second World War.|
|Popcorn, pancakes, doughnuts, grilled corn and Nescafe. There were tables and BBQs set up in the area behind for those who prefer souvlaki and salad.|
|Artisanal cheeses from Crete.|
|The less fortunate ones sleep on camp beds or mattresses on the verandahs of the monastery courtyard. There were also quite a few elderly women sound asleep on the pews inside the church.|
|Once the ceremonies are over, everyone wants to go home - tricky when home is on another island and the ferries aren't running.|
|The Italianate angels and stars inside the entrance to the monastery, beneath the bell tower.|
|Killing time at the kafeneion, waiting for news about boats.|
|The Dodecanese Seaways catamaran was finally able to make its first trip of the day at 4 p.m.|
Now the Symiots hop into their SUVs and whizz across the island in half an hour and everyone else comes with either the Dodecanese Seaways catamarans direct into Panormitis bay or with the Blue Star into Yialos, taking the bus across from Yialos. A few stalwarts, Symiot and foreign residents, came across on foot - a walk of about 3 hours if you know the short cuts using the old traditional footpaths, longer if you stick to the tarred road.
There was a big thunderstorm with torrential rain in the early hours of Sunday morning, doubtless not appreciated by those camping on the terraces at Panormitis, but the wind settled after that and the Blue Star came through Yialos only about half an hour late on Sunday morning. Most of the pilgrims have left now and this week really marks the beginning of the winter season on Symi. From here on Dodecanese Seaways will only stop in Symi on Saturday, Sunday and Monday. The Blue Star on Wednesdays and Fridays is the only way to get to Rhodes during the week and as this is affected by weather in the Saronic Gulf and the central and northern Aegean, our connections with the outside world become more precarious.
Another weather front is expected to reach us towards the end of the week, bringing more rain and wind. Temperatures, however, still remain mild with midday highs of around 22 degrees centigrade and evening lows around 18 degrees centigrade.
Have a good week.