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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Sun 29 Jan - Left - Stavros from Penelope Supermarket in Frikes with daughter Maria. Stavros has sold his supermarket to Livanis, The Vathy Ena people. The corner shop has been an institution in Frikes as have the faces of Stavros, his wife Penelope and daughter Maria. Stavros says he'll find something else to occupy his time. first on the list is his grandchild.
We hear that today may be the day we have regular electricity again.
Above - Yiannis P. Antenna TV News Reporter speaks with Dimitri from Stavros, as he heads around the island gauging the impact of the power failure from those affected by it. Click here to go to Day 6 of Snow, cold and no electricity.
DEH pylon, crumpled up like paper
Mon 30 Jan - Left - This photo of one of the crumpled pylons was kindly sent to me from Jackie at KefMuse, Cephalonia. To see more photos from the Cephalonia experience of this power failure, click here Jackies letter can be read in Visitors Letters 2006 pg 1
Today Ithaca goes back to work. Let's hope the lights stay on. I must note that Cephalonia still has many pylons that didn't blow down in the wind, so who knows what our future holds next time the wind blows.
6pm - Southern Ithaca had power again today, all day. North Ithacas power was interrupted when a builder on a building site near Stavros cut the high tension power lines with machinery. He was electrocuted and is luckily alive, but north Ithaca remained without electricity until DEH came from Cephalonia to fix the problem. By 4.30pm the entire island was powered up again. Ithaca and Cephalonia will experience intermitted cuts to electricity as DEH sets about fixing the pylons. For those interested in what an electrical engineer has to say about this issue, please see Visitors Letters 2006 pg 1 and read the letter sent in by Spero from Newcastle Australia. Spero has his roots in Stavros on Ithaca and is no stranger to the island or its' electrical problems.
Life returns to some normality, at least in Vathy. A beautifully sunny day with clear views far into the mainland, reminded everyone why they choose Ithaca as their home.
The bays were calm and the air of relief was palatable. It seems schools were still out today, with school age children in the streets of Vathy, but mostly it's back to business.
Click on photo above for more pics
Left - With no electricity in the north island, I headed out to distract myself, and during the process, reminded myself of the beauty this island holds by heading up to Anoghi. A week later, there is still quite a bit of snow in this mountain village. Anoghi was in the thick of the bitter cold when the power first went out. Click here or on photo left for more pics
The Council is also looking into acquiring 2 generators for the island. If DEH won't supply them, we may need to get one ourselves. 100 euro per person living on the island would achieve that, That's not alot of money to be independently powered up during a crisis. Be assured the Council is looking into all options so that Ithaca doesn't continue to suffer these situations. Again I urge you to read Speros letter, as in there lies the ultimate solution to our electricity problems. Meanwhile Ithaca will keep the pressure on DEH.

Tue 31 Jan - This morning Ithaca woke to electricity flowing through the grid. We could turn on our heaters, drink coffee, make toast and live like ordinary people again. Wonderful feeling. Last week it was said on the News that we'd have some cuts today, but so far not a fluctuation. Everyone seems to be breathing easy and smiling again.

On Thursday 2nd February, Kioni celebrates Ypapantis. 6pm around the Church with a Liturgy at 8pm.
Fri 3 Feb - Yesterday felt like Spring, warm sunshine all day, but some of the vintage locals are predicting rain in the next day or two. People are settling back into their routines after last weeks' blackout and sifting through the workloads that had built up over that week. Left - Ester van Zuylen, in her guise as Sign Painter, gets the Rementzo Restaurants' menu board ready. Rementzo will be putting on a new face for the coming season.
Some people in Vathy experienced a earth tremor late last night. Nothing felt up north.
Above - The old Frikes Supermarket, with new owners, is undergoing a major face-lift inside and out. The owners of ENA (one) Supermarket in Vathy have acquired this corner store in Frikes after Stavros and Penelope decided to let go of this institution. What will the new owners name it I wonder. Maybe DYO (Two)?
Below - A life-line in Lahos. Everyone seems to be looking up lately to see just how secure our electricity poles on Ithaki are. Don't think anyone is up to another power failure.
Sat 4 Feb - It's been a warm and sunny past week, but from tomorrow on the weather is predicted to turn bad again with cooler temps and storms on the horizon. Best get out and about before we're rained in. I know Kravoulia 2 is a much loved beach, so spend 10 minutes there with ithacagreece to reminisce about the summer days you have spent there or could spend there in the future.
Click here or on photo below for more pics.
Click here for more pics of Kravoulia 2 beach just outside Frikes, northern Ithaca
Ithaca in Winter 2006
Mon 6 Feb - Ithaca had a wonderful 9 days, weather-wise, but today the rain is pouring down again, it's cold (an overnight low of -4) and staying like this over the next few days. Wet roads and cold temps for this Monday morning.. Bank employees are on strike today at the National Bank of Greece in opposition to redundancy plans etc. The elderly could collect their pensions, ATM service was normal, but no in house transactions, not even the Dole, were processed. The strike is expected to continue through tomorrow and maybe Wednesday. The rain also brings about the usual OTE problems with internet connections.
What better way to pass the hours of a rainy morning than at Odysseas Cafe in Vathy. Ouzo and a Meze...just right.
Low cloud closes the horizon for Ithaki. Above - View to Exoghi across Stavros. Below - Low cloud over South Ithaki.
Perahori loses its' peak under cloud
Kathara in the distance, obscured by low cloud
Tue 7 Feb - Above Left - From the West country in the UK to the north country of Ithaki. Neil Resta is on Ithaca for 1 short week. It's not long before he finds a drinking partenr in Nektarios. They headed to Spavento last night to listen to the mood sounds of Kioni via Yiorgos' massive cd collection, through which, the hours passed as smoothly as the mellow taste of Spavento whiskey. That the temperature dropped down below 0 outside, was barely noticed.
After last nights' below zero temps, the mainland peaks and the mountains across on Lefakada, are iced with generous snowfalls again. Ithaca too, would love to see some more snow fall on the island, but only if there's electricity. By the way, the army generators seem to be doing a fine job of keeping the island lit and warm. No major breaks in service so far.
Sat 11 Feb - Sunshine and rain throughout the day yesterday, but temps are quite mild. February seems very quiet. Many locals have taken off for their holidays. Many go to Athens for the Winter sales, others return to their city homes to escape the Winter on Ithaca. Whatever entertainment and fun is available on the island now, is home made. Friends get together, rock bands rehearse and have parties...Ouzo Sundays and nights at Margarita for the soccer and company.
Sun 12 Feb - Little known fact is that the name of Ena Supermarket in Vathy is actually Proto (First), and I have it from the horses mouth, that's it's not out of the question that Livanis new Supermarket in Frikes, once Penelope Supermark, may well be called Deftero (Second).
The regular 'loggers on' of will know that Stavros Delas and Dimos Kostopoulos, play bass and drums in The Chappries, Ithacas Rock cover band, well, now the boys are stretching their horizons to join Hard Candy for a gig at the Underworld Club in Athens on Feb 18.
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