.September 2009 Page 1 2 3
Wednesday 16th - Vathy is fully alive this week with the Annual Odysseas Symposium held at the Cultural Center in Vathy. Attendees have come from all over the world to take part. Last night was Award night, but there will be discussions on the subject of Odysseas, Homer and Ithaki all week, so if you're interested, head on down and see what's happening.
Above - A large cruiser docked in Vathy yesterday, delivering around 5 busloads of tourists to tour the island. Guess the Season still has a few highs in the tourism stakes, although mostly, the streets are quiet again now. Below Left - Ag. Ioannis hideaway beach. Below Right - Bell Tower at Pinnerakia, the uninhabited Monastery above Exoghi.
So we've had some rain, some greying skies, but all in all the weather is pretty perfect lately. Today a top of 32C brings us all back into Summer mode after a couple of days with cardies at night. Things seem very relaxed on the island. All the locals are smiling again with the heaving traffic of August behind them and the goat bells are again ringing across the island.
Above - View from Apostolata, Stavros to Exoghi, where the sky made itself at home in the living room.
Friday 18th - Yesterday the skies looked like this (Left & below), but today they are blue again with the temperature rising to match.
Just when you think you've had enough of Summer, the heat, the long days, bright skies and too many drinks at the local bar with the friends that wash in and out during May to October, you set your eyes on scenes such as these and you quickly realize that Ithaki is weather and view blessed, and that you have this amazing vista right at your doorstep each day if you want it..
Monday 21st - Personally, I really love September on Ithaca. There are just enough people to keep it interesting, but not so many that you don't know where to look to rest your eye. The skies are changing cloudy to blue through the day and the views across to the Mainland, Lefkada and Kefalonia are becoming clearer the closer we get to October. There are still many yachts and Day Trippers coming into the bays around the island which make a colourful interlude to sleepy afternoons.
The waters around the island look very inviting, crystal clear and calm, ideal for a little sea travel. During Kaiki time, the bustle of the restaurants reverberates around the village of Kioni, as it does with each Day Tripper that motors in whether by sea or by road. The Greek kitchen aromas waft out of each restaurant, enticing passers by, especially those who have mustered up a hearty appetite through some Ionian island hopping.
Even though we approaching the end of September, there is still plenty of sun and sea worshipping going on around the beaches of Ithaca. Who can resist the colour of that water?
Thursday 24th - Above - Although Panighiri (Festival) time is truly over, there are still some of us dancing on the table tops while the sun still shines. . Left - Our changing skies with the ferry coming in at Piso Aetos.
We're well into the Season change now. Days are shorter, nights are cooler and today, the skies are changing again with rain forecast. Autumn is here. Those visiting the island now get to have all this beauty almost to themselves. It's a time to get to know the locals, play a little guitar around the dinner table and simply enjoy the pleasures of Ithaca in the Shoulder Season.
Too much excitement for me a couple of days ago with a close by neighbour accidentally?!? setting fire to his shed and igniting the neighbourhood. Black smoke billowed onto my balcony as the fire went out of control, obscurring everything and making me think the fire had reached around my house, trapping me inside. My friends received panic calls and soon the fire brigade saved the day. Phew!! A very quick response for which I am very grateful. "Don't play with matches or petrol."
Saturday 26th - Only a few days left of September and by the looks of the sky yesterday morning, we all seemed quite sure that the weather would continue to be fine through this week, but although the skies were blue in the am, the pm had something else in mind for us - Rain Rain and more Rain. Right - Friday morning in Perahori with all the grand views this mountain village has to offer. If you head right to the top, somedays you can even make out Patras, but if not, then you'll just have to be sat-
isfied to feast your eyes on Vathy harbour and Filiatro below and the islands between Ithaki and the Mainland straight ahead. If the Ionian still had pirates terrorizing the islands, then this would be the place to spot them. Below - How Friday started (Vathy) and how Friday ended (Stavros).
It's coming up to Election time again in Greece so all the political parties have their propaganda plastered around the island in hope of getting that coveted vote. KKE, Greeces' Communist Party, being one of the most aggressive advertisers with big banners hanging wherever there's a hook. With Elections in early October, those registered to vote on Ithaca will all be returning for the privilege, which will make next week another busy time on the island. Around the traps, there are lively debates about politics and Greeces' future, but after witnessing a couple, I believe that the conversation I was having with a 5 year old about 'I spy with my little eye', I was convinced we were having the more intelligent conversation. Propaganda and idealism have got the points for this week approaching elections. It's Fever time.
Platrithia is undergoing a little clean up with road sides and gutters being reclaimed from the scrub. It's amazing how much the weeds had encroached on the roads. 10 weeds down, building rubble and dead cars to go...
We know it's the end of another Season when restaurants begin to close their doors. Yefuri in Platrithia is having its last day this Sunday, so if you haven't had the chance to eat there yet, you better get a move on.
Left - What do 'soft porn' and 'weather' have in common? The Star tv Weather Report. Probably the best ranking Weather Report on Greek TV, only problem is that once it's over, no one remembers the forecast. You will need Flash Player 7 and higher to view the Flash Movie.
Sunday 27th - Coming up on October the 1st, it's my favourite festival in the north of the island - The Marida (Sardine) Festival down at Polis Beach. For a donation to the community pot, you can eat some freshly caught Marida and enjoy the great community 'feast up' along with the rest of us. It's usually a great day (weather permitting). Speaking of weather - O-Oh! Many disappointed faces around Ithaca today with rain pouring down on us from morning to night. Ithaca sure needs a drenching after a long, hot summer, but for the visitors here for a week or less, the change in the weather couldn't have come at a worse time. Yachters in their raincoats, wondered the wet streets looking for shelter, while those in rented rooms, just locked themselves in for the day. If the long rainy day wasn't bad enough, at night, the power went off too - twice. Luckily for no longer than half an hour, but the sudden black did bring back memories of our week long winter black out a couple of years ago.
Right - Filitou area near Homers School in the north of Ithaca, where you can see fantastic views of Afales and Frikes bays, the village of Exoghi above with its recently painted bell tower in island blue, and a donkey or two if you look among the scrub.
Monday 28th - Yesterday morning started quite grey and miserable, but by the afternoon the sun was shining again and the night was quite mild, temperature wise. Today we should have lots of sunshine again with the bad weather heading away from our area as you can see below.
It's actually quite surprising how many people ferried in this weekend. The island seems to be buzzing with tourists again, granted, not as many as in August, but quite a few for this time of year. Today, the sunshine has also tempted people back to the beaches around the island.
Above, Below and Right - Vathy from the backstreets
Right - The last minutes of daylight over Aetos Bay. While Lefki still bathes in the rays, this side of Hani is draped in deep shadow as the sun disappears behind the mountain.
Wednesday 30th - Temperatures are forecast to rise again over the next couple of days. Beach weather ahead. We don't actually need it any hotter right now, the emotions on the island are already at fever pitch with the elections only a few days away. Passionate, hot discussions/arguments
Tuesday 29th - Seems there was some discussion on the date of the Marida Festival, some thought it may be a good idea to have it on the Election Weekend, but the latest is that the festival will be held on the 1st as is the usual date. It may be a good idea to check with the Stavros Community just incase there is a last minute change.
Today, all of Ithaca will suffer from a power out from 9 - 11 am. The reason is a little vague, but I would hazard a guess that the power cut earlier this week may have something to do with it. There may be some reparation required.
reverberating from cafe to park bench. Some are so passionate about their preference, they are flying the party flags from every window ledge or pole. The feeling is that the government will change. Who knows, the ND (New Democratic Party) members may be collecting their very generous pensions very soon. The other major party is of course PASOK, but SYRIZA, KKE, LAOS, the Greek Green party (yes really) and various independents are all vying for the baton to be passed to them. Do any of them really have the muscle to hold it is the real question.
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