Blue Skies and Daisies

It may be chilly but the skies are blue and the daisies lush. 

While the areas closest to the road and therefore vehicle access have been extensively rebuilt in recent years, many of the houses in the oldest part of Chorio at the head of the Kataraktis are still ruins and this neighbourhood is only sparsely populated.

Many businesses are still packed up for the winter, particularly those that are on the 'cold' side of the harbour.  The summer season on Symi does not really begin until the middle of May when the weather is more settled and there are more tourists around.  Some Greek holiday destinations further north have longer winters than we do and only have a tourist season from June to September so we are quite fortunate.

Bright new flags were put up for Dodecanese Day on 7 March.  The next big holiday is Greek Independence Day on 25 March. This is also the Feast of the Annunciation, making it a religious as well as a public holiday.  The ochre building in the centre foreground is Symi's customs house and duty free shop. The open green structure to the right of that is the fish market although these days fishermen usually sell their catch direct from the boats when they come in, first thing in the morning.

The Nireus Hotel in Harani, still wrapped in plastic against the winter storms.  This area can be really battered in winter gales and the hotels along the front minimise damage by wrapping as much as they can in plastic.  Even the larger plants are often wrapped in sacking to keep the salt off.

The clear waters off Harani, swirled by the wake of the incoming ferry.

Despite a much promised heatwave Symi is still shivering in a cold north westerly wind that is keeping temperatures down around 11 degrees.  Gale force winds in the Aegean played havoc with shipping this week as Pireaus was closed due to a shipping ban.  With so few all weather ports in Greece, particularly in the islands, the policy is to keep ships safely in harbour during bad weather as there is no where safe for them to shelter if things deteriorate.  The wind dropped sufficiently for commercial shipping to resume yesterday but it is still quite rough out.  Fortunately this wind direction does not cause swell problems in Rhodes harbour so activity was able to get going again fairly promptly.  The wind is expected to ease over the weekend with slightly warmer temperatures than usual next week as a high pressure system comes into effect.  The photograph above shows the Blue Star coming in from Pireaus en route to Rhodes at midday on Thursday, more than 24 hours late.  She will only be coming through from Rhodes this evening after fitting in a trip to Meyisti (Kastellorizon), the most remote of all the Greek islands.

Have a good weekend.


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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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