It is still very hot

The August holiday, usually one of the most exuberantly cheerful on the Greek religious calendar as the Assumption of Mary the Mother of God into Heaven is celebrated, coincided with the tragic crash of a plane full of Greek-Cypriots and Greeks on Sunday morning, plunging both Greece and Cyprus into three days of national mourning. Although the normal celebrations at the Alethini on the Pedi road took place here on Symi last night and the sounds of traditional music drifted across the valley until the small hours of the morning, the attendant church services around Greece and Cyprus became memorial services rather than the usual ones of rejoicing. For many families and communities this year’s summer holiday was a memorable one in the worst way possible and we spare a thought for them.

On a more cheerful note, the Symi Festival has some lively offerings this week. Tonight the Greek hip-hop band ‘Imiskoumbria’ is performing in the town square. A satirical group, they have a following both inside and outside Greece. Tomorrow evening is rather more conventional with the Dancing Association of Salonika performing traditional dances. On Thursday there is another popular group, ‘Makrina Xaderfia’, and on Friday night it is a more traditional Greek music concert with Argyris Kastanias.

It is still very hot and the island has been plagued by power cuts as the local power station struggles to cope with the demands of so many air conditioners, fridges and freezers. The problem is not unique to Symi and DEH, the Greek electricity company, puts out regular appeals for people to avoid overloading the system. Last week Athens was buying electricity in from Albania and Bulgaria to meet local demand – evidently our neighbours have not yet become sufficiently affluent to afford the air conditioners and other appliances we now find essential to survive the summer heatwaves and thus have spare electricity.

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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