Ithaca Greece - Winter 2005 - 2006. Greek Island Holidays in the Ionian. Ithaca Ithaki, the home of Ulysses and Homer
Winter on Ithaca 2005 - 2006
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Wed 26 Oct - Yesterday was a great day to be out and about. Lots of sunshine and warm weather all day. In Vathy, the school kids practiced their Oxi day march around Dendraki, getting ready for the big day. Luckily their not saying "Oxi". More great weather expected today for the Name Day of Dimitris and Dimokratos. Hronia Polla!
Below - October opens up the social calendar for the locals. Niko (Chapries Super Star) from Mylos Creperie and Vikki from Vathy head to the villages to escape the 'Big Smoke' and visit their friends in Frikes and Kioni.
It's football season at this time of year and thus, the boys are at the field a few times a week practicing kicking a ball around and yelling at eachother. Just joking. We all know that football is a precise and strategic game played by astute and athletic men in shorts. We caught up with the Northern Ithacan team, the Odysseus boys, during their footy practice in Stavros. Anyone needing Greek swear word lessons, should come along. These boys have them all down pat.
Thu 27 Oct - Right - Another clear day on Ithaki. Warm, summery weather for all to enjoy. Those visitors who have chosen October to holiday on the island, have been treated to an Indian Summer that rivals the real thing. An (almost) private paradise. A time to really get to know the locals and see how the island lives behind the August mask. If you want a beach all to yourself, now is the time. Oxi day is on Friday, so there will be an influx of people coming to Ithaki to celebrate with family and friends that live here. Let's hope the great weather doesn't leave when they do.



...Kalo Mina
Jessica Bell
Jessica Bell
Sharp Ties
Wed 2 Nov - goes AWOL in body and mind . Yes, it's been very quiet on the Ithaki front. Athens called and thus Ithaki was left in peace and quiet by the hOME ithaca greece camera. Toli with his band Sharp Ties, played at the Micro Mousiko Theatro in Athens last Saturday, where he debuted his new band members and a few new songs. Sharp Ties were a hit in the 80's with massive record sales, so this was pretty much a come back. One of the highlights of the gig was undoubtedly his version of 'Hurricane' by Neil Young, accompanied by only an accordion. Don't know what Neil would have thought of it, but the crowd loved it. Ithakis' Jessica Bell aka ash11, supported Sharp Ties with a half hour set that had the audience mesmerized as she performed her original pop tunes. This young Australian singer/songwriter who moved to Greece just over three years ago, wowed the crowd with her razor edge performance and electric talent. It takes a lot of guts to play solo with an electric guitar and then even toss that to the side to do an Acapella number to finish off the set. Very impressive. Sharp Ties and Jessica Bell join forces again to play at the Underworld in Athens December 1.
While in Athens you do as the Athenians do, and that's head to Monastiraki and the Plaka on Sunday. There's always something to see hear and smell. Warm weekend weather bathed the city in sunshine and blue skies, but news has it that the sun was shining even brighter on Ithaki and the skies were never bluer. Oh well, can't have everything. Athens, as usual, had pirate cd sellers, buskers and beggars doing great business with the great weather, and I wonder just how many souvlaki get sold on a Sunday in Athens. Seems everyone was eating one. The colour and lack of fashion flare was also as conspicuous as usual. There should be an Oxi Day for that. Yes, yes, yes, not only did hOME ithaca greece miss out on Oxi Day on Ithaki, it also missed the massive celebrations of Oxi Day in Athens. The excuse is "the alarm didn't go off" I don't expect you to believe it as it is in fact a fib. Even needs a parade-free weekend at times
Above - Graffiti art in the Plaka reminds everyone that spray paint is the preferred method of painting in the city, not whitewash.
Above - There's a ghost in the machine. No, not Dj Stephen Walker, the Ghost from 3RRR fm in Melbourne Australia, but Robby Williams. Geez! for someone who doesn't want to be famous, he sure gets around.
Fri 4 Nov - The island is in full olive picking mode this month. Good weather has the locals singing in the groves and taking picnic lunches. For many, this is a family affair, as they head off early each day into the olive groves. Grandfather, grandmother, father, mother, son and daughter, lay the canvas, scrape the branches and fill bag after bag with Ithaki's olives.
Picking olives in Stavros, Northern Ithaca

Ithacas' olives are small and black, harvested for olive oil, there are few groves that harvest for 'eating' olives, although Ithacas' olives often complement the local dinner table. The olive factories around the island will soon be pressing these olives for the oil that is a mandatory addition to every meal.

Fri 4 Nov - 40 kg. Now that's pretty big. Looks like Panoyioti (Lupo) from Kioni is true to his reputation as the master of fishing. Where he caught it is a secret, but it's no secret that it was him, as locals gather around Lupos catch with money in their pockets to buy a piece.
Below - Bemeni (another Kioni Panoyioti) sets about scaling and slicing the fish for the salivating consumers, waiting patiently on the Frikes pier.
Left - A proud Panoyioti keeps the fish wet before his friend Bemeni takes to it with a hammer and axe. A large fish on the pier doesn't just attract the Frikes locals, but the wasps too. Everyone gets to feast thanks to Lupo.
A warm November day has Ithaki out and about enjoying the 22 degrees C, warm sunshine and blue skies to the horizon. No one would ever guess that it's the last month of Autumn. People (brave, in my opinion) are still swimming to take advantage of the mild temps and fine days before December turns it all on its' head and shows us that there is a bitter cold ahead.
It was really this big!
Left - Poppy from Rementzo Restaurant gets in a little sunshine with her daughter Ariadne inbetween preparing the restaurant for Winter. Down comes the canope, fridges, tables and chairs go into storage and Rementzo gets stripped back to the comfie atmosphere of the off season. Their opening times are Wed - Sat Dinner only and Sunday Lunch and Dinner.
Right - Women head home after a day of olive picking in the groves, carrying their ladders, bags and baskets filled with ripe black olives.
The smell of wood burning permiates through the valleys of Ithaca as landowners prune back their trees and burn off the excess. This years' weather has made for a great month of November, whether working in the fields, walking through the hills, fishing in the bays or taking it easy at home.
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