Symi Epiphany 2017

The view from the Symi Visitor Accommodation office during the rain storm on Tuesday afternoon.  If you ever go to the webcam at this time of the year and it isn't working, it is because we have unplugged everything due to stormy weather.  As most of Symi's utility lines are above ground lightning strikes do a lot of damage, travelling down telephone lines as well as along power lines, and sorting out the damage can take weeks on a small island so we have to err on the side of caution.

The view from the Symi Visitor Accommodation office this morning as the crowds gather for the Epiphany celebrations.  Similar booths decorated with oranges are erected at Harani, Pedi and Panormitis.

You can see the oranges and the icon quite clearly here. The priest and the mayor are behind all that foliage.

The priest casts the cross into the water from which it is retrieved by the young boys, hence the lad in the bathing trunks while everyone else is wrapped up against the cold.


Heading back to dry land for towels, warm clothes and a year of blessings.

A fire burning near Bozburun on the Turkish coast this morning.

A plume of smoke of a very different sort.  Many Symiots use wood-burners in the winter to keep warm as these are quite economical to run and some versions can even be used for cooking.  We can't buy fancy smoke-less fuel here.  Firewood tends to be whatever is available.  The Minister of the Environment appealed to the population earlier this week to avoid using wood fires as they are causing a smog problem in the larger towns and cities.  Unfortunately he did not make any practical suggestions as to what people can realistically do for alternative heating in austerity Greece.

In the absence of heating it is not just the humans who wrap up warmly at this time of the year.  Even the cats plump out with much thicker coats.
It has been a stormy week in Greece and there is more to come as Storm Ariadne brings bitterly cold air down from Siberia.  Much of Greece will be at freezing or below this weekend and early next week.  Even here on Symi we can expect a high of 6 and a low of 4 tomorrow, Sunday and Monday.  Athens will be colder than London, Paris or Rome this weekend and the Athens municipality has announced that the main metro stations will be open to the homeless to shelter from the extreme temperatures.  No one gets hosed down with cold water in shop fronts here as there is a realisation that homelessness is not a lifestyle choice.

The Blue Star came through as scheduled this morning although those travelled on her from Piraeus reported a bumpy ride due to strong winds in the Aegean.

Have a warm weekend, planning your next Symi holiday with Wendy and myself at Symi Visitor Accommodation.


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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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