ithaca greece
Aghios Nikolaos Festival at Mavrona
.Bay .
Thursday 10th May 2007
Kioni Ithaca
It's a warm and sunny morning, the lamb is roasting on the spit and the Ag. Nikolaos bells are ringing. Each year on the 10th of May, locals gather around the small church at Mavrona Bay to celebrate this religious holiday.
The small church filled for the Service. The men of the village showed off their Cantor skills while the women crossed their chests. This festival is one of the remaining traditional ceremonies, rarely attended by visitors to the island. It's a time for the Kioni locals to get together and celebrate their Saint. It's also an opportunity to eat, drink and be merry. Very merry in some cases. There's no wild dancing here, just a relaxed community taking the opportunity to be together at the very picturesque bayside of Mavrona, where the churchyard steps lead to the sea.
Some respite from the heat under an age old tree
Fishing boats in the harbour
Local wine drunk in the shade of the church walls
Men around the lamb roasting on the Spit
Women chatting around the church door
Deep blue sky overhead and cool shade in the church yard. The old stone walls surrounding Ag. Nikolaos, have had many stories etched into their pores, told by locals year after year, time after time. They've soaked up laughter and tears from weddings, baptisms and funerals, capturing the sadness and the joy, and to bear witness to all the life and the death that has passed through here.
The stone and mortar here are not what hold this community together however, it's the humour and the warmth of individuals, who spread laughter and joy amidst demanding and difficult times.
Ag. Nikolaos Festival at Mavrona Bay in Kioni
Ag. Nikolaos Festival, another great way to spend a morning on Ithaca. Great food, good company, wine, sea and sun. You can't ask for more.
Thursday 10th May 2007

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