Saturday, 29 June 2019

Ferry Strike on Wednesday July 3rd ...

Which is a UK arrival day here on Skiathos

If you are arriving via the airport, and intending to transfer to Skopelos or Alonissos. Read on ...

The Greek Seamen Federation NPO is planning a boat strike on Wednesday the 3rd of July. Demands that the Federation has are not being met and therefore a strike is being called out. The strike will be from 00.01 hours on the 3rd of July until 24.00 hours.

Please try and get more information from your travel agent, regarding contingency plans for your onward journey. As the ferries, flying cat and flying dolphins will not operate.

If you are an independent traveller, see the reps on arrival, to see if you can be transfered with the package passengers, or book a room on Skiathos ...

Skiathos Dance festival


Started last night with a parade down Papadiamanti street. The stage is on the island, by the bus terminus. (Not the old harbour or Bourtzi as suggested on the FB groups)


The dancers are practicing in the Lyceum school by the bus terminus.



The festival continues tonight and finishes on Sunday evening ...

The other festival 'JH's Birthday bash' continued yesterday, with a texted plea for help, to finish his 'death by pizza' - Sadly I could not assist due to a Koziakis meat feast ...

This morning's harvest, better whip up some tzatziki ...


The taxi driver from Newcastle writes with advice, that the 'best negroni is at' but like Mousakka, how can you know unless you have tried every one on the island?

Great effort by the Amsterdam TUI yesterday to land, on the third attempt. A new all-comers record. Even BA don't allow the third try, they go somewhere else.

Bet the good people of Amsterdam, headed for the bar after that ...

Previous Blog: The morning after ...

Friday, 28 June 2019

The morning after ...

The night before ...

Must say it was a great night, on day 2 of JH's birthday bash. Day 2 because celebrations started before midnight at Taverna Thessaloniki on Wednesday when the Greeks and Italians started the party early.

I am feeling remarkably chipper, considering Rainy was feeling a little shaky, on arrival. But the flowers perked her up. We managed to put two very good bottles of Italian merlot, to sleep.

Well why not ...



Not like the Oval, where a couple of top up G and T's had reduced JH to a gibbering wreck. Or Lords where we had bubbles, and a few chianti bottles, down the Marylebone road.

After some gentle persuasion JH, medicated Rainey with a Kir Royale, and the medicine did the trick. A return to form ...

I only ever drink cocktails, with JH and following a Mayor election every four years.

So last nights Cosmopolitan, came as a bit of a surprise.  My only previous experience,  being the well thumbed copy in the dentist and doctors surgery.


On the advice of Rex the famous Chelsea fishmonger, and 5am fellow Billingsgate friend. I tried a Negroni, and like your first ever Gin and Tonic, needs further practice, to acquire the skills ...

But I rather like it ...


JH who is a master of all things Italian, tells me it's a favourite of Florence. I was a Dougal fan, but a few of these I would have a spring in my step, like Zebedee ...

Day three of the birthday started at, Debs place, but I went to bed, with 1.5 litres of H2O.


JH last heard of snoring like a bear, looking like a fresh cooked lobster, glowing red on Achladies beach ...

Travel update: Chaos at the airport, as the roundabout, is now open for business. Skiathos not having had one before. No one knows which way to go round, or over it. Opening it on the busiest day of the week, English Friday, when the Brits drop off their hire cars, a stunning piece of EU planning.

Planes diverted due to a hire car bump at Skiathos, blocking arrival and departures???

Wait until you see the queue for taxis, it's not the check in queue ...

Thursday, 27 June 2019

Another sunny morning ...

If a touch draughty first thing ...

It does look like it's going to be a warm one,  a golden sunrise, rising out of the distant low cloud, over the sea.

I have been reminded it is so very important to keep hydrated. Which is just as well as today the rubble brothers, will be celebrating JH's birthday today here 'on the rock' ...

Last night I bumped into the lovely Sheila, and Ken, the fittest man on Skiathos, from the 'Boomerang club' who are thoroughly enjoying their holiday. Based at the suite named after them, for their many years of dedicated custom at Pavlos & Maria.

Superyacht

This beauty sailed in yesterday, a very nice crew who kindly advised me, the yacht is 59m long and has a 70m mast ...

Photo: Nikos Paschalis / A1 Yachting







Just after the photos were taken, the yacht moved round to the old harbour, in readiness for JH's black-tie TOWIE birthday cocktail party, later this evening ...

Today will be the first arrival of the TUS flight, from Tel Aviv. Its official summer has arrived, here on 'the rock' ...

Rather a warm afternoon, 30.6 at the weather station. Need to keep rehydrated, both before and after dark. Better dust of the Dinner Jacket ...

Previous Blog: Spot the ...

Wednesday, 26 June 2019

Spot the ...

Tourist on a mission ...

I did this morning, On the way around the ring road, on what is a rather humid sticky morning. I spotted two countrymen on their way back from Sklavanetis, to their accommodation.

A bag of shopping each - So self catering. Each with a box under one arm, with what appears to be a kettle, and a toaster ...

I have to admire their sense of purpose and assume they will be donating the electrical goods to the accommodation in two weeks time.

Down at the cafe with some Greek friends having coffee, the conversation went to a very strange subject. Oysters - Στρείδια and how good the English version is. The prefered location to indulge being Whitstable in Kent ...

A young lady on Papadiamanti, is still patiently waiting to upsell her Honeyballs, to the taxi driver from Newcastle, who has gone off the radar, since broaching the subject ...

Have to agree with JH that facetime from a posh restaurant, is a definite no-no from me, the phone if in reach, would be destined for an ice bucket. Knowing JH, probably containing a fine wine ...

Strong winds this morning kept the inshore day trip fleet in port, however, the Skopelos boats headed out without issue ...

Previous Blog: Olympic Air flights from Thessaloniki, & BA arrives from London City ...

Tuesday, 25 June 2019

Olympic Air flights from Thessaloniki, & BA arrives from London City ...

You may have read this elsewhere ...

But this is the correct script.

Olympic Air - Thessaloniki:

Until September 7th, Thessaloniki will be directly connected to Skiathos by Olympic Air ...

Flights will take place twice a week, every Tuesday and Saturday

Flight O598 will depart every Tuesday and Saturday from Thessaloniki at 12:50 with arrival at Skiathos at 13:35

Flight OA599 will depart every Tuesday and Saturday from Skiathos at 14:25 with arrival at Thessaloniki at 14:45

It is the first time that Olympic Air offers passengers a direct connection from Thessaloniki with the island of Skiathos, with regularly scheduled flights. The new route significantly boosts the tourist traffic to all the Northern Sporades, (Provided there is a connecting ferry) ...

British Airways - London City:

Yesterday BA reconnected London City airport, to Skiathos once again, with the scheduled service for the peak season ...

Photo © http://skiathian.blogspot.com/
@British_Airways First BA Cityflyer flight of 2019 arriving into #Skiathos #JSI from @LondonCityAir BA2225  Embraer ERJ-190LR G-LCAA ...

Welcome to Skiathos, John & Rainey ...

Bumped into Teo Tzoumas yesterday, our Mayor-elect, very busy meeting the current administration, and sorting out the handover to the new administration. Good to see he is still smiling ...

Happy Midsummer Christmas Day:

If you fancy an Australian Christmas, then oday is the day to do it. Slap the turkey and a few prawns on the barbie, its only *SIX MONTHS* until the most wonderful time of the year!

Seems a bit grey and breezy here 'on the rock' first thing, so may wait for Christmas after all ...

Previous Blog: Dance festival ...

Monday, 24 June 2019

Dance festival ...

Skiathos Traditional Dance Festival

Friday 28th - Sunday 30th June ...


The festival of Greek dances is being hosted here in Skiathos again, for the 17th time.

From Friday 28th - Sunday 30th June, various groups will demonstrate traditional dances from regions all over Greece, complemented by the beautiful colourful costumes. If you are lucky to be on the island, don't miss it!

First BA City flight of 2019

Today is the first arrival of the season, of the British Airways City flier, from London City Airport. On board, the Armani express, are some friends from the big city - well Essex actually.

Expecting it to become a bit lively, over the next few days ...

Later update: Another 28-degree day ...

Previous Blog: The Skiathos Hairdryer ...

Sunday, 23 June 2019

The Skiathos Hairdryer ...

On what was a warm morning, The wind has changed to the south ...

If you are on the island, the breeze on the southerly facing beaches, will be quite welcome. If you are in town, you notice the aircraft are departing over the harbour.

However the temperature is rising ...
Shade temperature
West facing wall
You are now experiencing the famous 'Skiathos hairdryer' not the one travelers go on about, will there be one in the room? ...

There could be some tender skin, radiating heat in the tavernas tonight ...

Superyacht - Adastra:

Superyacht Adastra arrived last night at Koukounaries Bay. (Photos from last year visit on 10 July 2018)
Photo: Elliot Kefalas/Skiathos Landings
42.5m (140 feet) Ocean Explorer Trimaran - top speed 23.2 knots - 1150 HP
Price: 15$ million

The striking 42.5m (140 ft) trimaran Adastra was launched in China on 11th April 2012. She is the result of meticulous attention to detail and innovative design to create a yacht that meets the needs of a very experienced ocean voyaging couple and their family, and to provide the level of comfort and style expected in a yacht of this class and size. No effort has been spared in the challenge to produce a beautiful yacht that has exceptionally low fuel consumption and yet provides excellent sea keeping qualities and luxurious accommodation. She has now covered over 40,000 miles, weathered 50 knot winds and crossed both the Pacific and Atlantic oceans. She has proven herself to be an exceptionally seaworthy, comfortable and fuel efficient ocean going vessel.

Later update: It maxed out at 32-degrees here today ...

Previous Blog: Cool down ...

Saturday, 22 June 2019

Cool down ...

After a very warm day ...

I went for a swim, yes. I have held out this long. But it was so worth it. I ended up sitting in a friends  pool. Sitting on the steps, head just above the water as the swallows preformed acrobatics, just a few feet away ...

Sometimes swooping over me to get the right position, to scoop up an unfortunate fly, wasp or bug, that was floundering on the top of the water.

Whats worse? To drown or to be scooped up and devoured by a swallow?

Sometimes making four passes over the water before, scooping up their evening meal. The local sparrow population enjoying a very noisy bath, and animated conversation on the steps, a few feet away.

I rescued a grasshopper from the depths, probably to be eaten another day. He hopped off, without any ill effects, or apparent show of gratitude.

But to feel the draught of a low flying swallow, as he passed a few inches above my head, and to leisurely observe the miracle of flight, as nature intended - Just as the Human version soared into the sky a mile or so away, powered by Rolls Royce engines with a roar, rather than a flutter of feathers ...

Previous Blog: Sweaty ...

Late News: Skiathian 1 - Wasps 0

Thursday, 20 June 2019

Sweaty ...

Hot and Humid ...

Another crazy day here on the rock, where the 'superstars fan club' are stalking their prey in Papadiamanti. There even appears to be a few Greek politicians here for their summer fun.

So plenty of slippery customers around, this evening I met another. It was another live snake. He was number three of four. Number four having been run over, and Number one and two being of the nasty variety ...

Mossies are about, and having a nibble, even a wasp or two trying their luck. I blame it on not taking in enough Gin, despite best efforts, the medicine is not working ...


Water has been on and off, well it is summer, why would we need it? Better stick to Ice cubes ...

Friday is going to be a very lively 'Airport Friday' so if you are travelling, may the force be with you, on your way to or from 'the rock' ...

Previous Blog: Steamy ...

Tuesday, 18 June 2019

Steamy ...

Has been a mixed day today ...

After last nights Strawberry full moon.

Cloudy skies, convection raindrops, afternoon sunshine, evening clouds, and steamy heat into the evening.

Met up with Leslie for coffee, and bumped into Michael and Karin from Cape Town. Not seen them for a few years, great to catch up again. Very kindly asking after SWMBO, and an update on her progress.

Then off to join the huge queue in the bank, at least the aircon was working, even if some of the equipment was not.

Spent an hour weeding and tying up the tomatoes, and the cucumbers which are now growing rapidly. The 'five a side football' sized courgettes, are being put to good use tomorrow morning.

Sweat dripping from the brow its been very humid evening indeed. In fact never been so tempted to go for a swim ...

Previous blog: Feast Day - Agia Triada ...

Monday, 17 June 2019

Feast Day - Agia Triada ...

Today its the celebration up at Agia Triada ...

This morning the church was all dressed up for the occasion ...


The icons were paraded and later this evening, there will be music and dancing ...

Its also Holy Spirit Monday, A public holiday in Greece today and Banks and Public offices are closed. Another very warm day on the rock, after last nights refreshing and rather sudden downpour.

Last nights delicious Beef in Red sauce with Spaghetti ...


Footnote:

Thoughts are with the family and friends of the UK tourist, who sadly passed away at Agia Pareskevi on Saturday afternoon ...

Previous Blog: Sunrise ...

Saturday, 15 June 2019

Sunrise ...

Not the greatest but the seagull took my attention ...


In addition a view from the vegetable patch ...

                                

Where things are progressing well, even if the passing thunderstorm last night, failed to refresh them after a very warm day. I am working my way to a veggie summer. I assume it will be veggie unless my friend with a speargun, surfaces with a fish ...

A busy day down at the airport, Its Austrian, Scandi, and Romanian day, with thirteen arrival and departures scheduled here on the rock ...

Its going to be a very warm one once again ...

Previous Blog: Sea of fire ...

Friday, 14 June 2019

Sea of fire ...

Is how the sunrise appeared this morning ...


There are a few clouds it seems over towards Lesvos ...


Not a bad start to airport friday, where there will be 17 arrivals and departures today. Starting with the Dutch and Italian flights, before the Brits arrive at lunchtime ...

1st arrival of the day - Καλημέρα, γείτονα ...


Please be warned, Gin will be in short supply this week, on the island. Once the Newcastle flight sponsored by 'Bombay Sapphire' arrives. So stock up on tonic, before the lady arrives ...

Later update: Just love the sound of Rolls Royce RB211 engines, roaring out over the harbour. They were singing as the TUI to LGW climbed out over the island, passing back over the airport ...

Previous Blog: Update from Mayor elect - Theo Tzoumas ...

Thursday, 13 June 2019

Update from Mayor elect - Theo Tzoumas ...

He advises ...

'The first week after the second round of the municipal elections and we started a circle of contacts in order to inform all areas of the Municipality with a view to taking office on September 1st. 

The first meeting was held last Tuesday with the current mayor, Dimitris Prevezano. 

It is remarkable that Mr. Prevezano gave us an office in the Town Hall, which we can use daily for contacts with the employees of the Municipality. 

An initiative of the Mayor that contributes decisively to a smooth transition to the new municipal authority and this is the first time in the history of the Municipality. 

I would like to warmly thank Mr Prevezano for this decision' ...

Previous Blog: Kalo Taxidi ...

Bus and water taxi timetables have been updated on the pages section ...

Wednesday, 12 June 2019

Kalo Taxidi ...

To Marg - aka Pinkygirl8 ...

13:00hrs local and the Pinkygirl8 adventures, have come to an end for now, as she has left the island heat for storm lashed Britain ...

A swift departure up runway 01 on MT1195, and headed for a flypast of Alonissos, on her way over to Kavala and Manchester ...

Good to see the lovely lady, with a moment to share, with the old Kalypso crew mates, before nipping off to the airport.

Meanwhile back on the rock, its apricot season.


Nothing quite like a warm sunkissed apricot for a lunchtime snack. Even better when you picked it yourself, from a friends tree.

Lisa -  Medium crunch teeth intact ...
In return a quick ride back to town, for the owner of the tree in part exchange ...

After the £123m win on euromillions last night, you may notice a slight change in the style of the blog. Especially as the big yacht being in my use this summer and not his. Friends of the Blog, will be welcome on board, just have a word with the butler on the quay.

Later Update: 20:10pm and a couple of Apricots later, the heat has set off some convection. Dark clouds have drifted off towards Evia, and a few lightning bolts visible over the sea ...

A few mossies and a slightly sweaty feel to the evening. Must be Fix o'clock ...

Previous Blog: From the horses mouth ...

Sunday, 9 June 2019

From the horses mouth ...

Actually the Captain ...

'Firstly I would like to apologise, for the delay to your service, and let you know what I know' he said on the cabin PA ...

"The aircraft (YL-LCQ) due to operate the service fom London Stansted this morning, had a technical issue with one of its engines. It was found to have damage to the fan blades, which were dented or were found to have a dent.

Now these blades cost around £35k each, and are not what you usualy have sitting in a cupboard. So spares had to be found. I understand that has happened and repairs are taking place.

The issue being Smartlynx, who operate the service, are a third party ancilary airline operating on behalf of TC. So they did not have spare aircraft. So we tried to sub out the Stansted service to another airline.

Skiathos being Skiathos only certain airlines and aircraft are licenced to operate here. It being summer none were available. So Thomas Cook decided to operate the service. However only two captains were available with the right licence to operate the service. One being me, however I could not work until 3pm, due to my hours yesterday.

This aircraft (G-TCDA) was busy at Manchester, but positioned to London Gatwick to operate the service this afternoon. Hence the reason we operated from Gatwick at 3pm, and in my part why we and I regret you have been delayed" ...

Passengers at Stansted (MT1078) were taken to Gatwick airport by coach for the 3pm departure.

Passengers at Skiathos (TCX8TU) around 200, were offered the opportunity of being taken to the port, and those who did were supplied with a three course lunch/meal. Later they were provided with a Sandwich and complementary drink during the eight our delay by Thomas Cook.

Both flights customers were offered a complimentary free drink of their choice, from the bar service. The entire crew for the flight having been called in from standby, to operate the service ...

I have not heard of any complaints, exactly the opposite. A good PR exercise by TC and their agents in Skiathos, and a job well done ...

Note: Back online following technical difficulties, grab yourself your own sandwich and a coffee ...

Welcome back: Soren and Susanne from Denmark ...

Previous Blog: Island News ...

Wednesday, 5 June 2019

Island news ...

It was quite a party, after the mayor election ...

Theo Tzoumas, certainly seems to have been a very popular choice, as Mayor of Skiathos.

He said ...

Beloved citizens of Skiathos

Thank you once again for your valuable support !!!

We promise that we will work hard together for the good of Skiathos that we love!

I remain at your disposal

Kind regards

Thodoris Tzoumas
Σκιάθος Μπορούμε Skiathos we can

Theo Tzoumas will officially take over as mayor of Skiathos, with effect from September 1st.

Steve and Helen, have been in touch. The launch of their restaurant has gone well. If you are in the area, do pay them a visit ...

Previous Blog: Congratulations to ...


Sunday, 2 June 2019

Congratulations to ...

Thodoris Tzoumas ...


Elected Mayor of Skiathos, this evening ...


He received 2013 votes
Nikos Plomaritis 1455 with a difference of 558 votes in favour of his candidacy ...

Thodoris Tzoumas 58,%
Nikos Plomaritis 41,3%

Congratulations to the new Mayor and his team ...

Celebrations included, fireworks, gunshots and a rumble of thunder with lightning flashes, from the Greek gods above ...


Greek Gods
Thunderstorm celebrations ...

Previous Blog: Kalo Mina - Ιούνιος ...

Saturday, 1 June 2019

Kalo Mina - Ιούνιος ...

Καλό μήνα Ιούνιος - June is here ...

The start of June, means the end of May. In more ways than one.

Happy new month - Its the start of metreological summer, and the official start of swimming season.


It's also the traditional busiest month, for annual returning visitors ...

The humble lily, for one ...


Its not only the Brits, the Scandies and the Serbians. The Italians flew In yesterday from Milan. Kurt Russell & Goldie Hawn usually arrive on 'the rock' for their annual vacation to the island. Its always great to see them mixing with the tourists, and enjoying our little island every year.

Its always sad to see the sidewise selfies posted, on social media - Leave them alone ...

My favourite sound, is that of the other annual visitors, the swallows and house martins peforming acrobatics, and screeching over the rooftops, and through the streets in town ...

It's also the time of year, to develop the reactions of a fighter pilot, to avoid the scooters, coming out of the setting sun, as you traverse Papadiamanti street.

Or a bus, scooter taxi and quad, at the four way 'junction of death, at Acropolis, bus stop 4 ...

UK/Euro Football championships tonight, Mayor election finals tomorrow, storms on the horizon for election count time tomorrow night ...

Quick mention for Mr & Mrs Tony Kirkham. Hope you enjoyed your jolly to Alonissos ...

Previous Blog: Skiathos friends ...

PS: Good luck to JH in Madrid tonight, I think you may need it ...