Thursday, 31 May 2012

Thank you ...

To Ken & Joyce from Durham, for passing the time each evening ...

I will take note of the contents of the book, and report back at a later date.

Kalo Taxedi ...

Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Dog shelter - News from the UK ...



NETHERBURY: Dog walkers raise £1,300 for canine charity

THIRTY four walkers and 23 dogs took part in a  sponsored  four mile dog walk in sunny conditions   around Netherbury, finishing with free refreshments at the Hare and Hounds Inn, Waytown.
The good cause was a shelter for starving and abandoned animals on the Greek island of Skiathos, and money raised so far totals £1,300.  
Next month walk organisers, Sue and David Wells, will travel to Skiathos to hand over the cash to their friend, Helen Bozas,  who runs the shelter.
Among the walkers was spaniel owner Pam Read  who has taken part in the walks since they started 18-years-ago.  She befriended the couple when Sue found her a cocker spaniel through the RSPCA.
More donations, especially of used collars, leads and veterinary products like flea powders and wormers are still welcome.  

Dog walkers during the annual sponsored event in Netherbury


Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Octopus to go ...

This morning a fisherman checking his basket was in luck ...

He caught two nice sized octopus, for his lunch - a free meal



What happened next is not or the faint hearted, however they were both despatched in front of some tourists. They were not impressed, I said to them, do not look, but they said they would be fine.

Then they said it was cruel ...



The result, is then ready to be tenderised, with around twenty hearty thwacks against the paralia. Once prepared its best cooked over charcoal, and served with a glass or two of tsipouro ...

Life death and the food chain, on a small island in the aegean ...

Sunday, 27 May 2012

Stormy weather ...

This morning was warm, but we were on the edge of something ...

Billowing cumulonimbus clouds over the mainland,  and warm air like a hair dryer from the south. This afternoon the winds came around 3pm, cold air being sucked upwards and we were in for another storm.

By 4pm the storm was upon us and rain, lashing down. Thunder lightning, and dips in power as the storm passed over our green (and getting greener) island.

Skopelos news posted a link on their island blog, showing the lightning strikes, as the storm approached around this time, and I share it below ...


Tonight it built again and the storm front threatened, as it darkened the skies over Evia. However we escaped and had just rain. The storm front is now over Halkidiki - where it has turned into another fierce storm cell, as it heads further north and into the night ...

Saturday, 26 May 2012

Taverna Alexandros ...

On a storm lashed evening ...

Where better to relax and listen to Christos, playing the guitar, to the accompaniment of rolling thunder, and natures firework display outside ...

Watched over by Othello, as he entertained us inside ...


However he had a trick up his sleeve, calling over friends from their table to play too ...


We were treated to an impromptu set by Elle and Paul Macdonald. Friends and regular readers of the blog, here from California on their annual visit to our green island.

A great night, and the food was reat as always too ...

Friday, 25 May 2012

Maroula Dimitrios ...


Is my favourite Skiathos trawler ...




... and a few low flying seagulls


As you can see, the sun finally came out, and it was a very pleasant - if somewhat cool evening ...



Thursday, 24 May 2012

If it were a game of cricket ...

Then today the covers would hardly have come off ...

Its been a grey day, the light has been poor, and a steady drizzle up until lunch. I stood around for a while hands in pockets, from the cool breeze that sometimes sent a shiver, over the outfield that is the paralia.

However the situation has improved, the skies have lifted and the rain clouds seem to have departed.

I will make a further inspection on the paralia, after tea, and prospects look better for this evening ...

Earlier there was a ray of sunshine, friends from the UK kindly brought a huge supply of multivitamins, for my wife. We are hugely indebted to you for your generosity - Thank you ...

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Evening on the Paralia ...

Sunset reflections on the Pounta ...



Skiathos in bloom ...

Walking round town, its a blaze of colour ...













Amazing generosity ...

It is no secret here, my wife has been very ill ...

Hopefully things are now on the mend. Today we went out for a walk, in the summer sunshine, and we bumped into many friends on the way. Everyone seems to want to hear the story, offer encouragement and try to help with a few words ...

Today Dimitris, who is a kamaki on the harbour, called to the house, with some set honey, to be mixed in warmed milk with a cube of Greek chocolate, and a hint of chili powder. This is to help with making the veins strong and increase the appetite. All ingredients were left with us ...

On the Paralia, Spiros rushed out of his taverna, he was worried he had not seen her for a few days, and was concerned. He sat us down and returned with a polystyrene box, he insisted we take and use the contents.
It was a new pot of Royal Jelly, and he gave precise instructions like a doctor in its use ...

As we neared home, Eleni came out from her taverna, and another discussion took place, and a few moments later we returned with some lovely fresh fish soup to help out ...

With all the problems that Greece has its people still do their best for their neighbours ...

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Drachmageddon ...

The Guardian has an interesting article on the 'return' of the drachma here I think its well worth a read ...

Even Artists are trying to design Greece's new currency – Cartoons

Drachmageddon is quite a good title, its appearing more and more as Greeks are asked to consider stepping back from the brink, over the last few days.

I can't help noticing that 'drachma' is quite near to another dark name - 'Dracula' - You heard it here first ...

Thimios Boat ...

Captain Yiorgos, has a new website ...

The Thimios, in my opinion, is the loveliest boat in the old harbour. It flies the earth flag from the top of the mast.



It often does the trip over to Tsougria, and is well worth waiting for ...

Monday, 21 May 2012

The key to these foods is their regular steady intake, not "eat once and hope."
Looks like i had better get some more then whilst I can ...

So I did ...

Half a kllo of freshly picked mulberries, still warm from the early morning sunshine, in the bag  ...



Washed, as they had a sugar coating from an earlier morning doughnut ...


... and very nice they were too ...

Sunday, 20 May 2012

Free food ...


The humble Mulberry ...

What i thought that was just a humble tree, that is pruned hard every year, and shoots again - has delicious fruits.

I joined some friends on an early morning scrumping expedition, in hunt of the 'Mouria'. To be honest I thought it was a wind up from my Greek friends and we were off to the hotel of the same name.

Not far from town, it seemed we were not alone, as we discovered other early morning islanders - out for a free breakfast. The birds seem to like them too ...



What does it taste like, Its a bit sharp, well like a cross between a dry blackberry and a sloe to me. 

Apparently its a superfood, Mulberries, like most dark fruit are rich in anthocyanins, which some studies have said are linked to health benefits against:

  • cancer
  • inflammation
  • diabetes
  • bacterial infection
The key to these foods is their regular steady intake, not "eat once and hope."
Looks like i had better get some more then whilst I can ...

Saturday, 19 May 2012

Strategic Airlines ...


Great effort on 1st flight of the season to arrive 20 hours late from Gatwick. Passengers had to wait from the 10.25am scheduled departure on friday and departed at 04.00 on Saturday - arriving Skiathos at 09.00am.

Strategic have just three aircraft, only one is operational and for some reason they have decided to give a long overdue refit on the other two now.

The Gatwick and Manchester flights have been running with knock on 24 hour delays, as they switch bases on their schedule quite often during the week.

Flights are being sub-contracted to a Lithuanian airline, who's crew's must be getting it in the neck ...

Friday, 18 May 2012

Back from another trip to the mainland ...

Left Volos on the Flying Cat at 14.30 yesterday afternoon ...

Luckily we forced our way up the gangplank just in time, as the darkening skies started to drip rain on us. By the time that we took our seats in row 18 it was hammering down on the side of the boat.

Its been like that ever since ...

I have never known weather like it in May. Rain lashing down and strong winds rattling the tiles, and stripping the bouganvillia in the street. The torrential rain overnight woke me three times.

This morning its no better, I have even reached for the dressing gown and blankets. I looked out into the raging torrent that was the street, and for a moment wondered why rain was horizontal, when I thought it was meant to be vertical ...

Perhaps I had got it wrong, and my neighbours (Both Greek and having building works done in town in summer) were throwing huge buckets of water down on the roof.

If you ever wondered why Greek houses have shutters, then this is the reason right now - not just to bang in the wind all night in the summer.

If this weather keeps up, then todays Skiathos bound passengers are going on an excursion somewhere else - Kalo Taxedi ...

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Enjoying the view ...

After a hectic few weeks ...

It was nice to take a few minutes to enjoy the island at its best.

Sitting at Mythos earlier, this was the view ...


However this is the one that most of you enjoy and remember ...



Monday, 14 May 2012

Rrrrroooooooosssssess ...

Vangelis is back on the streets ...

The man with the only working Polaroid camera, in the Northern Sporades ...





Monday, 7 May 2012

Flying visit ...

Apologies to regular visitors - Its been a bit quiet lately ...

I have been off the island dealing with a medical emergency, that is ongoing. I hope to be back online soon - but my time and loyalties are devoted elsewhere.

For those of you travelling soon, the first aircraft have brought the tourists here, and the island is absolutely beautiful in the spring sunshine. Its warm - actually very warm and there are plenty of tourists sporting sunburnt noses.

Best wishes and bye for now ...