A Sense of Anticipation

A 19th century riveted door on an old shopfront on the Kali Strata.  The plastic sheeting at the bottom is to keep driving rain out during the winter, while the owner is away.

There isn't much topsoil left on the hills and slopes of Symi but a fine green bloom of scrubby herb bushes and tough bulbous plants is visible at this time of the year.

The view from my office window today.  There is a brisk and somewhat chilly north wind blowing and the locals are in the cafes rather than out fishing or working on their boats.

As Christmas approaches those businesses that are still open are starting to put up decorations.

A Christmas star on the fish market roof, near the bridge in Yialos.

It is typical of the times, alas, that while we have a Christmas star on this lamp post in the town square, the streetlight itself lacks a globe and has done for some time.

The Dodecanese Seaways catamaran calls in on Mondays, en route to Kos, bringing in fresh produce from Rhodes.  We won't see anymore until Wednesday afternoon's Blue Star from Rhodes.

A designer polar bear in a designer boutique.

The window of the cake shop next door.

A patch of sunshine finds a rogue bougainvillea and a couple of pithoi on a rocky outcrop between the Kali Strata and Yialos.

What we are eating on Symi at the moment.  Those huge loose-leafed cabbages on the left are often used to make dolmades at this time of the year - an economical alternative to vine leaves.
The weather feels increasingly wintry as the wind blows down from the north, lowering temperatures and finding all the chinks in the doors and shutters.  We had rain showers and squalls all weekend and there was a shipping ban on Saturday due to strong winds further north.

Christmas decorations are appearing around the town although there won't be much in the way of festive food in the shops until a few days before Christmas.  There is no pressure here to listen to interminable carols and eat turkey dinners from September to Christmas.  Treats really are things to look forward to in the old fashioned sense of the word and there is a sense of anticipation in the days before Christmas as the ferry brings students returning for the holidays as well as festive goodies.  As the island's young people have to go to Athens and Thessalonika to further their studies and travelling is expensive and time-consuming, there will be many happy reunions with children that have  not been seen since term began in September.

There is going to be another shipping strike this week which will probably affected Friday's Blue Star. We are waiting for further information on this.

Have a good 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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