lilies in wasted sand


So here are Angelos’ photos from Livadi beach.
They were taken this morning ! He has also added arrows and labels. He is a very φιλότιμο παιδί.
He thought he would be digging for bulbs but he found grown plants. They’ ve got to be the sea-lilies. The colors do not show well, but A says that the leaves, though they look alike most other lily species, have a slightly different lighter shade, -‘pale’ or salty (this is the word he used). The series starts with a photo (taken from the outside) of the door of the shameful, so-called ‘camping site’ , which in fact is a wasteland full of sights for the fans of the weirdo culture …


…..never mind about it now and let’s go and see the lilies which grow on both sides of this door.



This is first sea-lily Angelos encountered. Nothing very spectacular, you’d think and you’d be right.

Everybody has smelt lilies. Could this ‘almost a seaweed’ give the best scent of all its magnificent relatives?

The answer is SALT. What food would be like without it? The same seems to be true with the perfumes of flowers (according to me, but I think not only me).



1, 2, 3, 4, … many lilies…

Illegal beach bum campers sleep on them in July and August.

I am an occasional beach bum but I have never camped, though I did sit and had a couple of interesting discussions with the inhabitants of that shade in the summer.



no comments…



Several lilies growing under that pile of dry sea weed.

They will burn them in May I suppose. But lilies are bulbs living a secret life inside the earth. The earth? No, the sand!


This is a lily and around it there is just sand -you know, sand, tiny crystals, whatever… sand like in Sahara the desert. The beeds are juniper acorns!


a stong tall loner apart from the others



This is exactly the spot where the first real tourists set a tent in Ikaria a looong ago in the mid-70s. They were young Germans, most of them students, most of them from Frankfurt, and they read the philosophy of Marcuse. (according to old local chronicles)
It is believed that in spite of the Weirdo cult, there are still pheromones and echoes and good vibrations there.
I can’t tell you. I hardly ever go to Livadi beach anymore.


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the hippies discovered Ikaria?

Saturday February 4, 2006 – 11:10pm (EET)

Ναι αυτοί ήταν. Το Λιβάδι τότε ήταν ένα δάσος από κέδρους και καλαμιές. Εμείς μέναμε στον Αρμενιστή κι αναρωτιόμασταν τι ήταν που τους άρεσε και έμεναν εκεί ‘στην ξερή άμμο’. Οι πιο γέροι τους λυπόντουσαν λίγο.
‘o tempora, o mores’

Sunday February 5, 2006 – 03:09pm (EET)

The place is not just innocent ‘Weirdo parade’. When I visited last summer, it looked very ‘fascist’… I don’t mean the beach. I mean the old camping-site behind the fence. Whoever made all those crazy contructions and piled all that garbidge in there, must have hated the hip, no doubt.

Let’s squat it, eh?
Να κάνουμε κατάληψη?

Sunday February 5, 2006 – 08:25pm (EET)

Wishes – Ευχές

ImageFor S : that money pours like rain along his way because he deserves it.
ImageFor Matt: that he becomes a Matt-ematician and solve many ridles
ImageFor Leda: to let go, relax a bit
ImageFor Greg: to always find moments of peace in wildernesses, to have many babies and write an occasional poem or two
ImageFor Elsa: that she gets paid 10 times more for correcting, translating and editing my terrible manuscripts (yes, I know, the prepositions…)
ImageFor my boss: that he finds out and attends the New Course for Vampires in Transylvania where they teach the new more efficiant and softer ways to suck blood without wounding the victims.
ImageFor Angelos: to find at last some substancial support to keep on tracing trails to paradises
ImageFor Hans: to find the flowers of his dreams on his visit in Ikaria this spring
ImageFor Nana: that she loves me, no matter…
ImageFor Jude: to enjoy motherhood and win the babycare decathlon

Ειμαι σαβατογενημενη και αν σφιχτω πολυ και βαλω τα δυνατα μου, οι ευχες μου πιανουν ! Μονο που μετα παθαινω πονοκεφαλο για 1-2 μερες αναλογως


1) ευχαριστώ πολύ -thanks a lot
2) βρήκα τα λουλούδια σου ή τουλάχιστον έτσι νομίζω -I found your flowers or at least I think so

I can’t upload photos to this piece of junk of a blog of yours, can I? So you’ll have them by e-mail.
Always at your service
You are ‘the something else’ – ‘Είσαι το κάτι άλλο’

Friday February 3, 2006 – 01:12pm (EET)

Thanks so much – how did you guess? I guess it is obvious, theatrical dreamer = dissolute pauper.

Friday February 3, 2006 – 11:20am (GMT)

Thanks Eleni -I don’t know about decathlon, it seems like a marathon – and I’ve only covered the first mile….! Ah, but the moments when she sleeps…

My wishes to you are that you continue to have a happy time finding the wildlife, lilies & trails before facing the vampire again

Friday February 3, 2006 – 11:24am (GMT)

Thanks, Eleni! «Matt-ematician» indeed. This school has gobbled up my time and my sleep for the last week.. only 97 more days until it’s over!

I’ll join with Jude in wishing you some peace before having to face the «real world» again… And aren’t more efficient ways to suck blood necessarily more painful?

Friday February 3, 2006 – 08:52am (EST)

For Eleni: May you always find hidden flowers.

Friday February 3, 2006 – 12:46pm (PST)

to Angelos: so amusing that we communicate via e-mail :))
to S : what gorgeous bodyline (pr photo)! but everyone needs money and the good-looking ones evenmore. As they say in Greece: ‘οι ωραιοι εχουν χρεη’ (say it in Greek and you ‘ll see it rimes fine)
to Ψ : παραδεχομαι οτι μου ελειψες (=I admit I have missed you). I am in the real world (no quotes) -I’ll explain later in blog. For now you should know that storytellers match riddle solvers through imagination, according to me (and Einstein too, right?).

Friday February 3, 2006 – 01:35pm (PST)

to Jude: run the marathon ! I so much wish I do the same some time, not too late..
to Greg (last not least): I’ll find everything. They say it’s a small world. But wow it’s wiiide, hiiigh and deeeep !!

Something in my system ‘s cracking and trembling. I’d better rush and post the ‘lilies in wasted-sand’

Friday February 3, 2006 – 01:43pm (PST)

You now have to add ενα ικαριοτικο κοιλιακι (as I had it christened after only one ikarian summer of feasting) to that bodyline…that photo is from Crete, end of Samaria Gorge, more than a few years ago. But thanks, I still need the money.

Saturday February 4, 2006 – 05:48pm (GMT)

manari mou, Eleni, ti pineis kai den mas dineis?
OK I wish the same about us two, no matter…
BTW ‘lilies in wasted-land’ has the makes of a mini-documentory -prfsnl vice or what? can’t you relax? We want to think of you that you relax in Ikaria. Obey us ! Do what we want !

Saturday February 4, 2006 – 11:18pm (EET)

Eleni in Ikaria with flowers, (Feb 03, 2006)

(correct) Θαλασσόκρινος

So it wasn’t the Lady but the Lord with the Lilies.
Nana «la fauve», my living library walking (on a perfect pair of legs btw) sent me this picture. Noone knows who he was, so they call him conventionaly «the King-Priest with the Lilies». This is from the palace of Knossos in Crete. Professeur Nana La Fauve says it’s from the 15-16th c. BC and adds that the lilies are ‘sea-lilies’ (θαλασσόκρινοι) and the ‘King-Priest» (tarara-tourouroum) is depicted on the seashore. The funniest thing is that in the begining scholars could not tell if these flowers were sea-lilies because they look much taller than sea-lilies. There was a big controversy that these were not actual flowers of the Cretan flora (even of 17000 y. ago), but oversized artistic depictions of imaginary plants. This meant that the Minoan school of art was not naturalistic but rather symbolic. Thus what we see on the frescoes were not images from real life but subjective exagerations in order to serve certain purposes …the state …the grandeur …blablabla …you know, all that…
It took years for scholars to realize that it was not the lilies that were oversized, but it was the «King-Priest» who was too short. He was just a kid !
Taken in consideration that the so-called ‘peoples of the sea’ (e.g. the Cycladeans and the Minoans) who lived in Greece before the Greeks, were no more than 1.60 m tall, the «Prince-Kid with the Lilies» should have only been less than 0.90m tall . Then came the Greeks who were much taller and could ride horses and they mixed with the ‘peoples of the sea’ and the average height of the population increased. But the lilies stayed the same -max.height 40 cm.
That’s all what Professeur Nana La Fauve from the university of the streets of downtown Athens (USDA) had to say about it.
My moral:
there are times when people need to see Kings and high Priests and there are times that people need to see kids and lilies.
My opinion on the painting:
I’d hate to see in him a king or a priest even at young age. He is so cute that I would have to stop being a democrat and become a royalist just for him. So I say he is an actor -a young apprentice who rehearses the words and the gests of his part on the beach. If I were a cool, wealthy Minoan that’s exactly what I’d want to look at on a wall of my palace.


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«tres bien, presque excellent !»
Prof Nana La Fauve (USDA)

Saturday February 4, 2006 – 11:21pm (EET)

Eleni in Ikaria, February 02, 2006


Ikarian sea lilies

Ο Θαλασσόκρινος

‘Στη στεριά δεν ζει το ψάρι
ούτε ο ανθός στην αμμουδιά,
κι οι Σουλιώτισσες δεν ζούνε
δίχως την ελευθεριά.’

This is from ‘The Dance of Zalogo’, one of my best favourites in Greek folk verse and music.The words say : «a fish can’t live on the land, neither can a flower live on sand, neither can the women of Souli live without freedom.»
(After a battle was lost, the women of Souli ran to the brow of a cliff where they sang and danced this merry-go-round ‘syrtos’ . As they danced, one after the other jumped over the cliff and got killed . The women of Souli were something else -believe me.)


I started like this because I wanted to connect this entry with ‘contradictions’, remember? Because in Greece there is a flower (ανθός =a real flower with a nice smell and pretty looks) which lives on sand. It’s name is Thalassokrinos (=the lilly of the sea, θάλασσα). I first saw it on Livadi beach, near Armenistis about 12 years ago. There are some dwarf cedar trees there (juniperus?) and people often camp under them in the summer. Then they go away and they leave many ordinary or extraordinary items half-buried in the sand. So when that smell struck my nose I thought it was from a bottle of sun-cream and my first thought was to find the make because I had never smelled anything like it before and I liked it very much. I expected to find some exotic (e.g. American, Australian) brand. But there was nothing like it in the deserted camping site under the cedar tree -only sand and several cigarette butts. The smell was stronger then so I squated and searched with my hands in the sand. Among cigarette butts and odd debris I touched several hard protrusions. They were whitish beige -about the same colour as the sand, and at first I thought they were small peebles or seashells. But they were soft under my touch and of course they smelt divine! I was wirling round the tree like a mad dog then and I went to the other side of it which campers do not use because there are many spurges there. Among them I saw my first fully grown Sea Lilly, a flower I believed it was mythical. Much humbler and modest than the ones depicted in the Minoan frescoes (one called, if I’m not mistaken, Η Κυρία με τα Κρίνα, The Lady with the Lillies) but as proud and princely in odor.
I had discovered a ‘habitat‘.
I came back after a few days and had the luck to see the whole colony in bloom. It was a very windy day though so there was no smell. I didn’t squat nor did I came back on another day, because I didn’t want to attract public attention. I only spoke about my discovery to the woman who owns ‘Atsahas’ taverna (that’s on the side of the hill on the eastern side of the beach). She is an amateur in plants and she knows Livadi beach like the palm of her hand, but she had never heard or seen the sea lillies. Perhaps this is because they come out of bulbs and they bloom for too short. Then, if you don’t know about them, you wouldn’t look under a tree in the sand (washed by the surf in winter too) to find such a flower, when there so many places to look for interesting plants on the dry land.

Soso's Lilies Soso's lilies Soso's lilies Aegean Sea lily

Why don’t those flowers behave right? Well, I think that if they did they wouldn’t smell so divine.
They are the Alkyon sea bird. Why doesn’t it nest on safer ground than those rocks right over the killer surf of the sea in winter? If they did, they would be plain birds (white, brown or black) and they wouldn’t have that shiny electric blue-green-yellow colour. They wouldn’t set an example, there would be no myth connected to them and we wouldn’t be so happy to see them -we, lonely swimmers of lonely rocky coves.

Have I filled a computer screen? I think I have. So I’ll write no more in my blog tonight. There will be another full computer screen tomorrow.

καληνύχτα σας
εδώ ψιχαλίζει απόψε
και είναι πολύ ωραία.
Εύχομαι και σε σας να είναι
το ίδιο καλά και καλύτερα.




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Yes, sometimes beauty emerges only through hardship and grief; sometimes through tears comes a clarity of vision. What does not kill me makes me stronger, so they say Eleni.

Wednesday February 1, 2006 – 02:45pm (PST)

I know the spot. What do I win if I find the bulbs and send you a photo?

Thursday February 2, 2006 – 12:51pm (EET)

Do I have to tell you? I thought you were cleverer.
To find the bulbs is the prize, of course, what else?

Thursday February 2, 2006 – 12:41pm (PST)

You have the North of England branch of Hiking Ikaria utterly intrigued by these sea-lilies….And how often have I been bowled over by extraordinary scents on Ikaria and not traced the source..

Thursday February 2, 2006 – 08:42pm (GMT)