Everyday Life on Symi in August

The obligatory early morning view of Pedi bay.  We have had some wind which has helped to clear the haze and extend our horizons. Those hills in the distance are Turkey.

The delicate colours of Symi in late summer.  The hill with the houses is the Milos area of Chorio, so called for the row of 17th century windmills along the crest.  Yialos is just on the other side.  The hill on the left background is Nimborio, the one on the right is the island of Nimos and the one in the far distance is Turkey once again.  Symi is actually surrounded by Turkey on three sides and in the days of the Ottoman Empire, Symi was a major hub for the region. Those windmills were built to mill grain that was grown in  Greek-owned farms across the straits around Datca, Bosburun and Fethiye in what is now modern-day Turkey.

Prickly pears ripening in Chorio.

Picking prickly pears is a delicate business.

Roses in Chorio.  The flowers get smaller in the summer, stressed by the heat, and open very quickly.

Expect the unexpected on Symi.  I passed this enigmatic sign on my way to work this morning but did not have time to take a detour to investigate.

Yachts lying off Harani, seen from the Kali Strata.  That is Nimos in the background.

A typical scene from the balcony of Symi Visitor Accommodation where I work in the mornings during the week.

The nautical museum at the back of the town square in Yialos.  The folk and local history museum up in Chorio has been closed for some years as it is undergoing extensive renovation/restoration.  It is still not clear quite when it will reopen.

Crates of freshly baked bread at one of the bakeries in the harbour.  The early deliveries are the staple white loaves used by the locals and the tavernas.  The fancier breads arrive later and you can get all sorts of interesting types of grains including stone milled and multi-grain.  In a waste-not, want-not society, unsold bread is dried out in the ovens and turned into rusks.

While visitors are sleeping off the night before, the locals are up and about and doing their shopping when I come down to the harbour before 8 in the morning.

Whoever owns this one is fully co-ordinated - even the crew and the dog were charcoal grey and black!

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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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