Cut Off from the World

February is usually the most wintry month of the year on Symi and 2008 is no exception. As the whole country is buffeted by icy gales and snow even our relatively sheltered little corner starts to feel the chill. A major cold front is working its way through at the moment and the forecast for the weekend on Symi includes Force 10 winds and temperatures ranging from 0 to 4 degrees centigrade. It is not a very productive month on the building sites with labourers huddled round, blowing on frozen fingers and cursing the wind and rain. The fishermen seek refuge in the coffee shops and very few people are out on the street.

Rhodes experienced a violent hail storm yesterday, the second this year violent enough to cause serious damage to greenhouses and buildings. Even national television, which has a tendency to forget the existence of the Dodecanese much of the time, showed footage of the storms on Rhodes on the national news last night. Snow is expected in central Athens tomorrow and is already falling on the high ground in much of the country.

There is a countrywide strike today against proposed government reforms to the social security system. The strike includes the closure of airports and ports for 24 hours. Coming as it does in the midst of a period when communications are already disrupted by the weather the islands feel very cut off from the world.

Time to chop firewood, cloche the vegetables and make sure the chickens have plenty of straw.

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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