Spring in the Air

Small but valiant, a young oak tree on the side of the road in Lieni

Sweetly scented alexanders on the Kali Strata

An abundance of daisies in the Pedi Valley.

Despite yesterday’s heavy rain and thunderstorms there is a feeling of spring in the air.  The little self-seeded valonia oak on the side of the road in Lieni is covered in bright new leaves. Every particle of soil seems to have something growing from it and the Kali Strata steps are lined with the luxuriant growth of sweet alexanders.  Someone somewhere in the harbour was playing Greek dance music as I was walking down the steps this morning and it echoed cheerfully round the famous amphitheatre harbour. By the time I reached the bottom the music was over but the mood lingered on. 

There is a sense of briskness and busyness after all the weeks of muffled down wet. Symi may still be seriously sodden, with blooms of salt efflorescence and mould erupting from the interior walls of the old stone houses and moss slick on the worn stone steps of the lanes but the days are getting longer and the long slow drying out process has begun.  The spring equinox is not far away now and in a few weeks the clocks will change. This Thursday is Tsiknopemti, Smokey or Burnt Thursday, one of the last days dedicated to the consumption of meat until the Easter Feast on Easter Sunday.  The municipality usually lays on free grilled pork souvlaki but the last couple of years it has  rained on the day, dampening the communal party spirit and precipitating hasty changes of venue.  We hope that this year, with everything a couple of weeks later, this will not be the case.  At the moment the forecast for Thursday is overcast with 0% chance of precipitation during the day but 50% chance of precipitation in the evening so fingers crossed that the weather is running late and the rain only reaches us after the last kebab has been eaten and the last spiderman and fairy princess tucked up in bed.

I apologise for the diminished quality of the photographs  today – unfortunately the CCD on my 14 megapixel compact has failed so I have had to revert to my old 6 megapixel one, much battered and held together with Sellotape.   It is strange – in 2005 when 6 megapixels was the acme of technology those photos looked so sharp, but having had better they now look quite fuzzy.

Have a good week.


A couple of early yachts.
 The catamaran in front is from my home town of Durban, South Africa.

The Old Markets boutique hotel - still wrapped up for the winter.

In the summer this lane is a bustle of bars and life al fresco.

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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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