Ithaca Greece. Summer happenings on the Greek island of Ithaca, Ithaki 2005
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Ithaca Summer Fun
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Mon 19 Sep - Above - Another sign of Summer being almost over with Vathinians, Othano, the Vathy Librarian, Alexandro, the Vathy lawyer, Poli from the Archives, Masso, the architect, Pagona from Paliocaravo Restaurant and assorted friends, hanging out at Platrithia for coffee and cake after a Sunday at the beach.
The sheep are grazing on last winters' remnants of nutritious grasses after a long hot Summer without rain. The sunburnt landscape is due to change around November and December when the first rains lush up the island again with lawn fields from Kioni to Vathy. Until then, there are olives to pick and sardines and calamari to catch in October.
Look what's hanging around Vathy. Strange marrows that hand off the vine. These, when dried, make great decorations so we are told.
Above Right - a hole in the sky after midday showers
Right - Kioni Bay mid afternoon
Below - A Lefki sky at dusk
Thur 22 Sep - the weather over the past week has been fairly unpredictable. One minute the sun is shining, blue skies light up the horizon, the next it's storming and bucketing down rain. The locals are enjoying the fresh change, but it's not much fun for the tourists waiting to head to the beach each day. Yesterday however, there would have been few disappointments with the day. The atmosphere was so clean, the views so clear you could see the houses in Zakynthos and people walking on the Pier in Sami, in Cephalonia. It was a day for photography and having a good look around the island, and just breathing in. The weather will continue like this for a little longer with more rain in the early hours of today, but will heat up again to continue with a little more summery weather ideal for the beach and lazing around. This time of year it's the locals turn to take it easy, so that's what their doing.
Music in Frikes after the lights go out in the restaurants
Right - Meropi from Symposium Restaurant sings up a storm with her friends after the doors close in her restaurant. The strumming of the acoustic guitar and well known Greek tunes echoed around the village, collecting onlookers and admirers.
Fri 23 Sep - Below - Yes, September has been very unpredictable in terms of weather. Thunder began to rumble around the island in the early hours of the morning with drizzle and black skies in tow. A Power Outage started the day and since then the Sun has had a struggle to show itself. Corfu had some bad storms yesterday, and they have worked their way south now to envelope the usually sunny and Summery Ithaki. Blue skies or black, the views in all weather are inspiring this time of year and whether you look at them from the beach or from behind closed windows, there's just something special that skies of all depths and shades bring out of the island, This is what they look like at 12.43pm.
Sat 24 Sep - Above - Yesterday was miserable most of the time, but even misery has its' high points with the end of the rainbow beyond the bay of Frikes. Ithaca was drenched from north to south with lightning and thunder throughout the day, into the night and through to the dawn, at which time the blue sky of September finally revealed itself again after too many days of unpredictability.
Sun 25 Sep - The weather over the past days has put ithaki into the Autumn mood. On go the jackets, out come the socks and shoes. There's a distinct change in the air. The rush of Summer has petered out over the past few weeks and it's almost time for picking olives again. The overworked welcome the quieter days, although there are still enough tourists, to make keeping the restaurants open, worthwhile.
Above - The calm waters of Kioni Bay. Over the past week, the Day Tripper ferries leave few people in Kioni, the village that is thought by many to be the most picturesque on the island.
Below - A Kioni fisherman scales and guts his catch on the bayfront with tourists looking on and taking note of his island technique.
Sun 25 Sep - The memorial of the capture of the German U-boat in Frikes Bay during WW2, which led to young Ithacan men being killed as a ramification of that event, has now become more a platform for a Communist Party spiel. Fewer Ithacans attend this Memorial each year as the relevence of Communist propaganda surpasses its' use by date for the majority of the community. There was further controversy this year with a major player in this Memorial service boycotting the day. The Kioni local did not attend due to the Memorial Service being held later than the original date, so that the it would fall on a weekend. As it happened there were fewer people than ever turning out for this annual remembrance of lives lost during the dangerous days after the capture of the U-Boat, with only 1 original member of the crew making a speech to remember those who lost their lives Once this lone participant took his place amongst the community, the leaders of the Communist Party began to preach to the converted.
Thu 29 Sep - Autmn skies, with their sweeping colours, paint Ithaca in strange light, and dusk becomes a magical time of day, only dwarfed by the Ionian sunset. Warm days and cool nights now, as we head deeper into Autumn and towards Winter.
Wed 28 Sep - The Set of Captain Corellis Mandolin in the hills above Sami in Cephalonia, is all but a poster on the roadside now, depicting through photographs what it was like during the shoot, and a big sign declaring DANGER Chemical hazard. Did they bury Nicolas Cages' toxic Italian accent here? Still hazardous after all this time.
Above - Rien Post of Lefki Cam and Tattoos is climbing the walls and it's not even winter yet. Seriously, just did a 'drive by' to catch the camperson who's catching Ithacans on their way between Vathy and Stavros while he wasn't looking. Fair's fair.
Friday 30th September and we say goodbye to Around the Villages on Summer Lodown for 2005. Another Summer season packed with festivals and concerts, weddings, parties and everything in between. A record 21 pages of Around the Villages with 19 Summer Specials. Remember you can revisit any of the Specials of this Summer and previous Summers, by going to the site index and under Summer Specials 2005 just click and go to the pages you want to see. For more on Ithaki during October to the end of April next year, visit Winter on Ithaca. It starts tomorrow.
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