Sunny and Mild

Family wheels

Symi isn't really biking country, being very steep and with few roads, but in recent years we have noticed that the children living in the harbour are increasingly using bicycles to get around and to play with their friends.  Perhaps this enthusiasm will extend into adolescence and adulthood and we will see fewer motorcycles and scooters on the island.

Keeping out the storm surge.  It is not uncommon for the harbour to flood in the winter, particularly if a barometric low coincides with a spring tide.  This shopkeeper is taking no chances.

Chatanooga choo - choo! We seem to be back to the original Noddy train, complete with Tschu Tschu printed on the front as it came from Germany.  The one emblazoned with Rodos Casino advertising has, presumably, gone back to Rhodes where the advertising hoardings are more appropriate.

Homing in on the cheese man.  

The view from the Symi Visitor Accommodation window this morning. As you can see the harbour is pretty much deserted now.  The main activity is over at the other end of the island, at Panormitis monastery, as preparations hot up for the big festival on Wednesday.

Good bye, sun beds!  On a clear sunny day, however, it is warm enough to swim in the sheltered beaches of Pedi.

Pedi bay.

It doesn't really get clearer than that, does it?

The tamarisk trees in Pedi have all had their winter hair cut.  Pollarding the trees lets more light into the houses and also reduces wind damage.
After a Saturday of solid rain the sun came out on Sunday and it has been beautiful weather ever since.  It looks as though it will remain sunny and mild for the rest of the week, with the next expected band of rain to only reach us on Sunday.  When we checked our rainwater gauge on Sunday morning, we had logged 60 millimetres of rain since the rainy season began.  Not a bad start!  Temperatures are in the low twenties now, falling to around 16 degrees at night.  Some people have started using their wood burners and other forms of heating, depending on which side of the harbour they live.  Location really is important on Symi in the winter as some areas are in shadow most of the day now and may also receive the full blast of the north wind.  Others bask smugly in the sunshine, their reward for bearing the full brunt of the summer heatwaves. The sea is still warm enough for swimming if you chose your beach carefully.

All the Dodecanese Seaways boats are operating in and out of Panormitis bay this week, giving Yialos a miss. Fortunately there are now plenty of buses connecting the two and we are now seeing the unusual sight of Panormitis pilgrims coming across to Yialos by bus for the day to see the harbour and do some shopping.

The tourist shops are effectively closed.  Many of the cafes and tavernas have packed up their chairs and tables for the winter and secured their premises against the anticipated storms.  Those who are not involved with the Panormitis festival are fishing or rotovating their fields in the Pedi valley. The island is slipping into winter mode.  I saw big sacks of fava, the yellow split peas that are a popular winter meal in Greece, for sale in the supermarket this morning.  When money is in short supply, the Greeks turn to lentils, fava, black eyed beans and other simple ingredients that have fed the people of the region for millenia.  A dish of pulses, a drizzle of olive oil and a chunk of bread and you are set up for the day.

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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