Easter Countdown

It is a very wet and windy Friday on Symi and it has been raining steadily for hours. This is the view from the office balcony today. I shall have to venture forth into this shortly to catch the bus back up to Chorio.  At least it isn't particularly cold - it is about 17 degrees centigrade.

Luckily there was a break in the rain when it was time for me to walk down to Yialos this morning.  The Blue Star was cancelled due to Force 9 gales in the Aegean.  Instead this big freighter is sheltering in the harbour - a safer option to lying at anchor somewhere in the lee of Rhodes.

Shop doorways, electricity poles and community boards are all ways in which island activities are advertised on Symi.  This weekend there is a children's show on about an unlikely romance between a chicken and a fox. Symiots are good at creating their own amusements - taking the children to a matinee at the cinema is just not an option when the nearest cinema is Rhodes!

The distressed look is easily achieved here - as long as you have the patience to let nature take its course.  I have watched this shutter in Chorio turn from dark blue gloss paint to the interesting effects above over a period of about 15 years.

Those who planted their bulbs in October are now enjoying the sweet scent of freesias.

A Chorio cat complaining about the late appearance of breakfast.

An informal rock garden in Chorio - wild ferns, moss and daisies.  In a few weeks someone will come along and remove the weeds and then whitewash the step fronts so that they look fresh for the summer.

Syringa berries.

Spring in the valonia oaks.

Everywhere one looks, something new is waking up from the winter.

Pedi bay on a clear day earlier this week.  This morning I could not see as far as the entrance of the bay for the rain and low clouds.
A spring storm is rolling across Greece and Turkey at the moment, bringing gale force winds, driving rain, occasional thunderstorms and very occasional patches of brief blinding sunshine.  This kind of turbulent weather can continue until May and only really calms down once continental Europe has warmed up.  The warm air coming from Africa and the cooler air from Europe meet over the Mediterranean, hence the unsettled weather at this time of the year.  Today may be the last significant rain we have until October or, on the other hand, we may have several more downpours before the long summer drought begins.  What we do know is that it is very rare to have rain after 10 May which is why the tourist boats and beach tavernas and many other tourist businesses that depend on good weather for their operation usually regard mid-May as the kicking off point for the season.

Greek Easter is a fortnight away and the shops are starting to get in more Easter items - elaborately decorated candles for the procession to celebrate the Resurrection, packets of colourful Easter egg dye, special offer sacks of flour for the baking marathon ahead and some large beribboned chocolate eggs from ION, a Greek chocolate company.  Greek Easter is more about family celebrations than about commerce and much of what is shared and enjoyed at this time is made by the people themselves, not bought.

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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