A Month of Holidays and Celebrations

Symi's war memorial is just to the left of the tall white flight of steps.  You can see the flags are up, ready for Monday's Dodecanese Day commemoration and wreath-laying ceremony.

Cheerful bunting on a grey day.  It will stay up until after the Independence Day celebrations on 25 March.

Oranges  in a garden on the Kali Strata.

The oak tree in Lieni, Chorio, is unfurling for a new year.

Breakfast on the hoof in a car park in Chorio.

Clean Monday falls on 14 March this year.  This marks the beginning of Lent in Greece and is celebrated with the flying of kites.  I have never found a satisfactory explanation for why kites are flown on this particular day. As it is pretty much a one-off thing, the kites are simple light-weight constructions made of thin plastic, not unlike supermarket shopping bag plastic and seldom survive longer than a day's use, depending on wind strength.  Football club colours are popular.  Kampos supermarket in Chorio is ahead of the game - I spotted these outside their shop in Chorio on Thursday this week.

This season's 'must have' plastic tablecloth design has pomegranates on it.  I think I might treat myself to a couple of metres to cheer up my kitchen.

An extremely narrow lane in Chorio.  Regulars to the island may be able to identify where it is.  

Bright blue among the ruins. The contraption on the left foreground is an electric winch, presumably used to hoist building materials when the upper floor of the house just off the picture was being finished as the family was already in residence below.

Random colours in Chorio.  

Co-ordinated catwalk.
We have had a few brief thundershowers over the past 48 hours, including a short sharp hailstorm this morning that only lasted about 5 minutes, if that.   There still hasn't been enough rain to make a difference to the island's water supply, unfortunately, and the long range forecast doesn't hold much promise that this will improve.  Looking on the bright side, it seems unlikely that it is going to rain on anybody's parade this month.

Monday, as I have mentioned previously, is Dodecanese Day, a holiday celebrated only in the Dodecanese. The bunting is up around the harbour and now that the rain  has cleared there are dozens of happy, squealing children, practicing their marching skills for the parade on Monday.  Yesterday was Tsiknopempti - Smokey Thursday. This marks the start of the carnival season with lots of grilled meat.  The evening showers held off until the BBQs were over so no one had soggy souvlaki.  Usually the carnival festivities fall in February but Greek Easter is quite late this year, falling at the beginning of May, so March is full of holidays and celebrations. The supermarkets are starting to get in more stock, much of it traditional seasonal fare for the forthcoming holidays such as that staple fasting food - sesame halvah in a wide range of flavours, including a version that is coated with dark chocolate. Dark chocolate has always been called health chocolate here. What with that and the pomegranates, the Greeks have always been ahead of the game when it comes to superfoods!

Have a good weekend.

Regards,
Adriana






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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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