No Gas Til Tuesday (2)

_Blog Review Ikaria 2012 # 10 The Explorers (1b)_


Hello readers!

I hope that some of you are by now familiar with my idea of reviewing a selection of blog entries about my island. I also hope that my most faithful followers have read «No Gas Til Tuesday (1)» -the first part of selected entries from an entire blog dedicated to living in Ikaria written by jandcfox. Jackie has been undoubtedly the best of that category of bloggers who I have decided to name «Explorers». Don’t misunderstand me; there have probably been a lot of people who have taken risks and had many interesting adventures in Ikaria. The difference with Jackie is that she shared her experiences with the world. And she did this through a well-written and frequently updated blog wonderfully enriched with many great pictures!

I am a mother of three and a teacher by trade. I was born and raised in Pittsburgh, PA, and now, my family lives in Lancaster, PA. For the next year we are going to live in the village of Karavostamo, Ikaria, Greece. My philosophy on life? Check things off of your bucket list! What are a few things on my bucket list? Speak greek fluently Live in Greece Enrich my children’s lives

We are in the middle of September so time falls right for the second and last part. It is about living in Ikaria «off season» when the island empties from tourists, visitors and relatives; that is, living in the Ikaria of the all-year-long residents, which, some say, is The True Ikaria

What was it like? Has she won the bet? See for yourselves. Read my selection of blog entries of Jackie in Ikaria, September 2012 – June 2013

(As always, a selection of the blogger’s own words appear when you move your mouse over the highlighted links and photos. VERY USEFUL TO HASTY READERS!)


















Until Next Year! Και Του Χρόνου!

Indeed, these people have set a good example. Yes, a good example.

How unlike me, that’s all I have to say, and that says it all.

Note : As I have said many times before in my reviews, comments and credits should be adressed to the bloggers, not to me! As far as I am concerned, all I want is to send more readers to these amazing people -my explorers. All I wish is that my choices are good.


No Gas Til Tuesday (1)

_Blog Review Ikaria 2012 # 9 The Explorers (1a)_


Are done with the longevity thing yet? It seems so. At least I didn’t hear they wrote «WELCOME TO THE ISLAND OF LONGEVITY» on the wavebreakers or the air control tower. I think the noise is dimming to something like «Ikaria is a special, ancient and very natural island» -something that makes more sense, don’t you agree? No problem with anthropologists, it’s been ages since we boiled one in our cauldrons…


Yet, in my opinion, our «special, ancient and very natural island» calls more for explorers.

Our explorers are usually careful not to project their own realities over a place and many are those who devote a lot of time and energy to search every pocket and fold. Our explorers take risks. Some of them too, the most admirable, share their adventures with you and me on the web. That kind of people I had in mind when I started this set of blog entries. Thinking about it, I could have just reblogged, but no, I said. I believed that my first champions, Danae, Ikaroia, Jernej and Johanna, deserved more than to recommend a link and perhaps also decorate it with a sample photo. Since then, several tributes have been paid and now, five years after, the experience has expanded. Don’t ask me how, yet it’s a fact. Some of of my explorers have chosen to live on the island!

Dear readers, today I am proudly presenting to you Greek/American Jackie, author of nogastiltuesday, who decided to leave the States with her three children and live for one year in Ikaria, the island where her father was born and has a home.

I am a mother of three and a teacher by trade. I was born and raised in Pittsburgh, PA, and now, my family lives in Lancaster, PA. For the next year we are going to live in the village of Karavostamo, Ikaria, Greece. My philosophy on life? Check things off of your bucket list! What are a few things on my bucket list? Speak greek fluently Live in Greece Enrich my children’s lives

Don’t say you weren’t puzzled by the strange name of her blog? The explanation is in one of her first entries, also pinned also at the top of her home page. The point is that instead of being daunted by that good example of «greek ways», she was challenged and some years later she came looking for more. She came to understand. Explore and understand the land, the people, the culture, the nature, everyday life, the four seasons, the weather, the language and so much more. Explore, understand, appreciate and teach her three adorable children to appreciate as well.

I am a mother myself so I am familiar with the task. However, I shouldn’t identify and add my personal touch. I’d rather let Jackie speak on her own through the entries of her wonderful blog that I chose for you in today’s review.

«No Gas Til Tuesday» comes like a diary. In an experiential and direct way, Jackie writes often twice and three times every week and that over a period of several months! And I am not counting the bulky comment exchange under each entry! It would be impossible for me (and probably for WordPress) to load all the entries I have chosen in one page. Perforce I have divided the material in two parts: The first part (1a) is Summer 2012  and the second part (1b) includes Autumn, Winter, Spring and part of Summer 2012-13.

As always, a selection of the blogger’s own words appear when you move your mouse over the highlighted links to the pages as well as over the photos.

There we go through Jackie’s Summer 2012 (1a) :


















Let this very touching entry be the last from Jackie’s blog for now.

She has talked there about two feelings that I am afraid I know too well.

The Greeks have invented the richest and most beautiful words for them:

Mελαγχολία and Νοσταλγία.

I could write an essay about the topic here and now, yet WP started to jam on me. I’ve got to go. See you in a few weeks with more No Gas Til Tuesday.

Note : As I have said many times before in my reviews, comments and credits should be adressed to the bloggers, not to me! As far as I am concerned, all I want is to send more readers to these amazing people -my explorers. All I wish is that my choices are good.


Το Πέλαγος του Βοριά




Ikaria 157 - The Sea

.Τ ο  π έ λ α γ ο ς  τ ο υ  β ο ρ ι ά


Εκείνο που οι Αμερικάνοι

όταν έρχονται, ονομάζουν

καμιά φορά Ωκεανό

γιατί δεν φαίνεται

τίποτα στον ορίζοντα

σαν να είναι η άκρη

κάποιας ηπείρου,

αφού βρέξει και έχουν πλυθεί

οι αιθέρες και έχει απλωθεί

σιγαλιά, τότε πότε-πότε

μου δίνει

και βλέπω


Παραδείγματος χάριν:

Πρώτα, τα δελφίνια,

κι ύστερα μια ψαρόβαρκα

που κάθε μέρα ψαρεύει

επίμονα στο ίδιο σημείο.

Στο βάθος, μακριά στο κανάλι

περνούν φορτηγά φορτωμένα ίσως

τσιμέντο, σιτάρι, αυτοκίνητα,

εκτυπωτές. Και γιγαντιαία


Αργότερα λίγο πριν σουρουπώσει,

μπορεί να δω σαν φάντασμα να περνάει

καμιά πυραυλάκατος,

ή ένα -πιο ειρηνικό-

μικρό ιστιοπλοϊκό

που θέλω να πιστεύω

πως θα ‘ναι κανείς

Νορβηγός που κάνει

το γύρο του κόσμου,

ή ακόμα ίσως μια φίλη μου

που βαρέθηκε “να κάνει

αθροίσεις σε χοντρά

λογιστικά βιβλία”.

Όταν νυχτώνει περνούνε περίλαμπρα

τα κρουαζιερόπλοια: Μασσαλία,

Νάπολη, Μύκονος, Έφεσος.

Ίσως την ίδια ώρα, απ’ την άλλη μεριά

ξεκινούν να περάσουν απέναντι

στα μουλωχτά γυναικόπαιδα

μετανάστες τους προμαχώνες

του Κάστρου Ευρώπη.

Κι επιτέλους κάποια ώρα

διασχίζει το μαύρο τελάρο

κάτι πιο γνώριμο, το καράβι

απ’ τον Πειραιά, εκείνο που

φέρνει τον καφέ μου και τα τσιγάρα μου.

Φωτοβολίδες, ανεμοστρόβιλοι, παράξενες αναλαμπές,

σύννεφα σαν αρχάγγελοι, μια φορά μου φάνηκε πως

είδα ένα φυσητήρα (διάβασα κι έμαθα πως πράγματι

συχνάζουν), μεγάλα πουλιά, γερανοί, πελαργοί,


Μια μέρα ονειρεύομαι πως θα φανεί εκείνο

το μαύρο πειρατικό με τα πενήντα κανόνια

που γράφει ο Μπρεχτ στο τραγούδι του Βάιλ,

ίσως ακόμα την ίδια την Pirate Jenny,


Γιατί στο πέλαγο μπορεί να δει κανείς


Γιατί στο πέλαγο…

ta panta rei



Εδω Ελενη.

Καθως βρισκομαι στην Ικαρια σημερα ειχα διαθεση να παρουσιασω στο μπλογκ μου το παραπανω ποιητικο κειμενο που εγραψε αγαπημενος φιλος γι αυτα που βλεπουμε με τα ματια του σωματος και της ψυχης οταν απο τα βουνα του νησιου μας αγναντευουμε το πελαγος.

Το Πελαγος του Βορια” ανηκει στη σειρα otinanaiπου ο φιλος μου δημοσιευει σχεδον καθε μηνα στο ikariamag, το διαδικτυακο περιοδικο της Ικαριας που μας ενημερωνει και μας κραταει συντροφια.

Ελεύθερες Πτήσεις : otinanai

Για να το εικονογραφησει, διαλεξε μια φωτογραφια που εβγαλα εγω καποτε σε μια χειμωνιατικη πεζοπορια στα βουνα και μου εκανε μεγάλη χαρα και τιμη λεγοντας μου πως του εδωσε εμπνευση.

Χαρα και τιμη οχι ομως εκπληξη. Μοιραζομαστε την ιδια αγαπη για τους ανοιχτους πελαγισιους οριζοντες, την ίδια φαντασια και περιεργεια για τα θεαματα και τα θαυματα που κρυβουν και φανερωνουν. Αληθεια, αυτο το κομματι θα μπορουσαμε να το ειχαμε γραψει μαζι.

Πφφφ… κολακευομαι…

Στην πραγματικοτητα ειναι ολο δικο του.

Γι αυτο, αναδημοσιευοντας στο μπλογκ μου, αντισταθηκα στον πειρασμο και δεν προσθεσα αλλες φωτογραφιες εκτος απο τις αρχικες, δηλαδη εκτος απο τη δικη μου στην αρχη και της Πελαγιας απο τη Σαμοθρακη στο τελος.

.Καλο Χειμωνα


Blog Review Ikaria 2008-2011 # 7



I am very interested in reading personal accounts about my island. To keep in touch with the place, media is good but there’s nothing like reading actual people’s impressions and looking at their photos.

This is the seventh part of the list of blog entries about Ikaria that I like. As I said in the forenote of the first part, my ambition was to review, not just blogroll, so I wrote a few words about each blog entry and I picked out pictures and quotes. These quotes I sometimes hid “behind the pictures”.  Move your mouse over to read them.



This one is from the rich harvest of 2011 about which I wrote in my previous entry. It’s a part of «Michael and Maya’s little blog», MAP adventures.



Michael and Maya come from the U.S. One year ago in July 2011, following the travelling tradition that has been taking shape in the recent years, the couple stopped in Ikaria on their way from Athens to Turkey and gave the world’s blog readers two containing and greatly illustrated entries:
.The first one goes…

«Since we arrived in Ikaria we have been hearing about the upcoming Panigiri in the hilltop village of Arethousa: «Goat, more goat, music, dancing, wine, more wine, and staying up all night. You have to go!» So after watching the US vs. Japan world cup final in a small cafe in Evdilos, we zoomed up a dark windy road on a rented scooter to find a huge outdoor party complete with jaunty live music and 2,000 drunk happy Greeks…»
The pictures I chose to show you are:
Panagiri started as a saints-name day in this village and then grew bigger and bigger and now it is a summer season weekly tradition where many people of Ikaria meet and celebrate the night.
The gentleman selling food tickets spoke English so we were able to procure a half kilo of goat meat, bread, and wine.
The second one goes…


«We are settling into the pace on Ikaria, which is sleepy and slow like a snail. We get up every morning with just enough time to jump in the ocean before the hotel breakfast ends.Regarding scooters: we have seen three different men driving with their dogs on laps with paws on the handlebars, a man and his date eating ice cream cones while riding, and a man that had an entire grilled fish on a large oven pan on his lap while riding up a mountain.

Long and twisty scooter rides have taken us to some fun destinations…«


The photos I chose are:
Michael and Maya in Ikaria
A nighttime Rebetico concert in Karavastamo to follow. Rebetico, according to our hosts in Armenistis, came about with the migration of Turks and Greeks from Izmir after the 1920s. It's at once jovial in the Greek way but with a blue edge.
Caught a sunset in Nas, overlooking the scattered stones of the temple of Artemis.
The rocks and sun and sea felt timeless there.

That was all about Ikaria from Michael and Maya’s little blog. Don’t you find them sweet? I adored them! Other Americans visited two months later, that is in September 2011 and… well, to cut short, they enjoyed the relaxation and the sound of the waves. I am all in for that last!

It’s summer and I should be doing other things than reviewing and posting. But it has to go like this and get done with wonderful 2011. The next entry will be dedicated to 2012. There’s good stuff there too. Stay tuned!
Thanks for the new colour and formating codes!
I love them and I hope readers don’t find them too loud.

Blog Review Ikaria 2008-2011 # 6



Can anybody of you count for me the blog entries about Ikaria that I have reviewed so far? I think they are about 16 and getting more every year. The harvest of 2011 was very rich as you may have noticed. A lot of travellers scheduled to visit Ikaria and as a lot of those travellers are bloggers as well, they wrote one thing or two about the island. Most of them seemed to have known beforehand what to expect. I was glad not to read again anything like «guys it’s all but a mountain!» or «there is no nightlife!». Instead, their reports talk about the rains, the weather, the waves, the gardens, the people, the way of life, the difficulties and the pleasures… In one word, the core of the experience.

Today’s review is dedicated to only one blog and blogger. I think you will agree that Jim Lesses, the multi-talented Ikarian/Australian from Adelaide, deserves all the space in my humble blogging room.



In between several outstanding entries about many places of the world The Compleat Traveller has blogged about Ikaria since 2009. Going through his blog it’s a funny feeling for me to see my island feature amongst famous spots in Paris and Manhattan! But Jim has a way to put everything together. Does this ability come from his Ikarian or from his Australian side? Neither, in my opinion. Speaking of experience from my own days of travelling, there is no big place and small place, famous place, obscure place, but only special, significant places where we feel good; places that make us we want to tell our friends about them.

Dear readers, this is Jim’s Ikaria. I am recommending to you to read all his entries!

* Move your mouse over the titles and the photos to get
a glimpse of some paragraphs.
© 2009-2011 Jim Lesses All Rights Reserved.



My Big Fat Greek Wedding


Friday Photo #7:
 My Island Home, Ikaria, Greece


Friday Photo
The Longing


Friday Photo
Storage Containers


 Who Pays The Ferryman?


 The [Greek] Gods Are Angry


Therma, Ikaria



Images Of Ikaria #1

* I am reblogging only one picture. You should see this in the original!


Kampos, Ikaria




Grecian Blues

* I am reblogging only one picture. You should see this in the original!


Friday Fotos: Nap Time



This is all from Jim Lesses’ blog about Ikaria for now. A learned, comprehensive approach with an unofficially professional touch, won’t you agree? Check out his Blue Set  on Flickr and tell me your opinion.



Recycled Blues by jimlesses Washing Blues by jimlesses Container Blues by jimlesses Storm Blues by jimlesses

All Texts & Photos © 2009-2011 Jim Lesses.
  • Eleni
See you next month!

Legends about Ikaria : The Forest of Radi

~That’s a beautifully wiggly forest!~
❤ ❤ ❤

Το Δάσος του Ράντη


About an old magic forest and the footpaths


Hello, readers! The above is in my Flickr and dates from over a year ago. When I discovered this forest I was 25 years old. It was awesome and so dense that we got completely lost. So lost and exhausted that we started crying! It was an unforgetable experience because it is thought to be practicaly impossible to get lost in a medium sized island. Whatever, it took us hours to get out of there. Let not this beautiful photo be a memorial. Because right now…
I don’t know who advises people (the Greeks in particular) who are coming to hike in Ikaria, not to follow the marked paths but instead, go looking for the Forest of Radi. Maybe it’s on some website (where they advertise stuff they have no idea about, just to show off). Maybe they get it from shopkeepers and hotel owners (who may drop “Radi Forest” in a trivial way to oblige a tourist). Maybe it’s on one of those new guide books that are based on hearsay and contain impractical “tips”.
‘Cause the truth is that until recently there was no Radi Forest!
Or to put it better –there is a forest and an area called “Radi”. But there was no more or less safe way for a newcomer to go there. Not only the place was far from main roads, villages and towns; not only the trails are vague and unmarked but also –very unfortunately- there are many goat trails that lead nowhere. Especially in August and September the forest is dusty and dry and there may  also be some caterpillar “itching powder” left from last June.
So, in spite of how attracted you feel at the sound of a magnificent term, resist it. Don’t go unprepared or you won’t find it, so hidden and mysterious it is! Try to locate and follow the trail marked by the Hiking and Mountain Climbing Association of Ikaria, which starts from the village of Petropouli and ends in the village of Frantato. For me this forest means a lot.
I want you to discover it in the proper way. I don’t want to hear anymore people telling me “We couldn’t find the way and, anyway, it was nothing. Just trees, as good as any…”
Here is their map. If you click on the image you will be transported to the home of the map in Google maps. Try it! It’s worth it! It’s a great piece of work!


Look for the “Dasos tou Ranti” in any other time of the year except August. For example, winter is the best season. (Forests are “storehouses” of winter, like the sea and the beaches “storehouses” of summer.) You may either start from Frantato or Petropouli and the trails is marked with orange dots, colored metal plates and cairns. This is the best and safest way to see this legendary ancient forest.
Good luck!
Until then, take a look the pictorial archives…



Eleni (still) in Ikaria (May 12, 2006)

My birthday Image is in a few days. As a gift to myself (because if I didn’t have me, what had I become in life?) and because myself needs, I ‘ll (tara tata taram…) try and illustrate «The Island» with photos.

For the rest, today was a cloudy and it rained a bit in the morning, so we cocooned.


(6 total)

Taurus, yes indeed I can see it. Me too sort of, on the cusp, but my girlfriend says more Aries.

Friday May 12, 2006 – 03:28pm (PDT)

yeah, Taurus. Terrible, isn’t it? I smash everything and then I say ‘sorry’, and I mean it, and I want to make even, but people don’t believe me. I’ve seen capricorns and aries do 100 t worse but they don’t have the looks, see?

Did you read ‘The Island’ in that link? Is it too scholarly and ‘British English’? I’m using the Greek translation.

Saturday May 13, 2006 – 01:05pm (PDT)

Oh no, my little mountain ash is Taurus (she was one last week), and I am Aries. She is already showing signs of wilfulness – we lock horns already.

I re-read The Island after your comment – I don’t know what the style of the poem says to a wider audience, but to me, the language evokes an ambience, and a feel of the island in the 50’s from an onlooker’s point of view. I can identify with it totally. My Greek is not good enough to comment on the translation, but I can only assume that it also captures that same feel and subtleties present in the original. I look forward to the illustrated verion.

Saturday May 13, 2006 – 11:28pm (BST)

-> images of beauty and words of love soothe the bull
-> I read somewhere that while in Ikaria McNeice had seen and known a lot and that he found himself in a very difficult position. On one side he had an idyllic place (the closed circle) and on the other Civil War, Cold war, nationalists vs communists. The sudden vision the poet has during his afternoon siesta under the pine tree, when the idyll becomes a Kafkian nightmare is my favourite part.

Sunday May 14, 2006 – 08:33am (PDT)

The poem, I like it at first then it become too long and ponderous and my intuitive nature rebels.

Monday May 15, 2006 – 07:23am (PDT)

You are right. The poem is often ponderous and really too long. As Eleni assumes, the poet was an eye witness of many situations and acts that he could not write shorter, hence clearer about. But the verses make good imagery and if Eleni already has or can find pictures to match the text, then …
We will see.

Thursday May 18, 2006 – 01:18pm (EEST)

In May the fog in the Aegean is PURPLE !

Ikaria ridge fog-1

Last weekend a group of 40 mountaineers from Athens came in Ikaria and walked on the mountain range from one side of the island to the other. I intended to meet them or rather find them somewhere along their way to «spy» on them.

Ikaria ridge fog-2

That is, to follow them from a distance just to enjoy the sight. «People in Landscape» : a theme that I have an obsession with.

Ikaria ridge fog-6

I also wanted to make them wonder of who I’d be, if they saw me. A shepherdess, a hunteress?  A hiker who follows a better path than theirs? Add up some mystery…  Image he he
But the weekend was very foggy. Mist covered the mountains, so I assumed that they wouldn’t do it and got back Imagein bed.

Nana skinnydipped in the foggy pool

I had done the same mistake : I underestimated the Greeks.

Ikaria ridge fog-6

Not only had they walked the whole Image length of the mountain ATHERAS (including some very dangerous passages) in the fog but they also took a dip in a lake with air temperatures 16-20 degrees). On the next day they walked in the canyon of Chalares, they swam in the river pools and then in the beach of Nas.


«People in Landscape». I know this is very important. I can’t explain why right now. Until I do better, see in the map what they did…

Hike Atheras


(8 total)

so that was you plan; «spy» on people like «the madwoman of the mountains of Ikaria, eh? Red hair would be seen from very far away even in the mist.
Anyway, they were travelling very fast. Too fast for me and far too fast for you. They wouldn’t stop and talk, talk, talk and have smokes and take pictures.
It’s difficult for the Greeks to wake up in the morning, pack and get on the move, but once they do —

Friday May 5, 2006 – 11:16pm (EEST)

-> once upon a time short-legged restless Greeks (armours, shields e.t.c.) walked all the way to India and back.
-> in fact the color of the fog in the Aegean is *salmon*. You can’t see a thing but it’s not scary. Because of this colour you feel ok; good vibrations… In it you sense that the sun reigns somewhere over the clouds.
It was very different during the blizzard on Ikaria in winter, though. Oh yes, it was, man.

Sunday May 7, 2006 – 10:46am (PDT)

never seen fog the color of salmon

Sunday May 7, 2006 – 06:10pm (PDT)

ha – I assumed that you were going to react with a comment _:
By «salmon» I translated the french «saumon» which is light greyish purple colour with a touch of yellow in it _: but the flesh of a fresh salmon fish is brighter and more to the orange, isn’t it?

Monday May 8, 2006 – 01:34am (PDT)

Yep, varies between pale orange and crimson, although we also have races of chinook salmon that are white-fleshed, we call them «white kings,» very rich and highly prized by those who know about them.

These Greeks, they are through-hikers, yes? Bully for them. And you, you are a woman of the misty mountains to a certain extent…

Monday May 8, 2006 – 08:19am (PDT)

I’m writing very fast and short right from THE island (…no horizon … just the blue). We arrived this morning. Eleni and I are going to smash it ! She is leaving, you know… So we’ve taken an oath to avoid the beaches. So it will be anything else but the beaches. My bf will very useful to break branches, hold us and drag us over boulders, make sure to show everybody that we are «accompanied». There will be no photos from these adventures. We are too big stars, super bums !

(so ‘un-ikarian’ -lol- we go to bed early…)

Monday May 8, 2006 – 11:10pm (EEST)

page from my notebook (Ikaria, April 9, 2006)



-> the weather broadcast was right; the gale stopped during the night. At dawn the wind changed from south to north; clouds came from the sea and covered the northern part of the island. «Misty mountains» and deep gorges hidden in the fog :- wow -: I like this kind of weather. It makes me imagine I am in New Zealand ! I wish I could fly just for once only to take a panoramic photo of the side of the island: clouds on the mountain tops and stripes of mist in the gorges.

-> its raining; in fact it’s not; it’s spraying. Greek language proves very poor in terms of rain. They call this weather «very wet». I’m sure the English know better and they have a presice word for these crawling curtains of fog and swirling thin raindrops.

-> The gale was like «sandpaper». Now came the «very wet» (fog and spray) and there couldn’t be better weather for the vegetation. I saw my lettuces die yesterday then today I saw them live again. Lush new foliage shines on the trees. I think that the gale was useful («I’m swallowing ‘n swallowing»). There was so much dry dead stuff on the trees and the bushes and the gale removed it. Many old trees broke.

Ikaria 109 Ikaria 194

Sun comes now down through to the lighten and help grow the saplings. -> Felicia aborted; too young to have kitten. If she was human she would be 8 years old.

-> I’m wasting my time trying to take photos of thorny spurges. But I can’t. Spurges absorb the light like sponges. They are like «shadows». I take a photo and then instead of of the small round thorny bush, there is a green blur like a ball. The details disappear. I should have some super pro equipement and special spot lights to take a good photo of a spurge. Photographers who work with complicated hairstyles have that kind of equipement.

Ikaria 221  Ikaria 184  Ikaria 173

-> I have a fix for these plants. I believe they hold the island slopes in place so that they are not washed in the sea. I also love their texture. Outside they have a net of terrible and painful thorns and behind and inside this net there are very fresh tiny green leaves (+ small flowers!). They are usually oval and they look like «vegetable rocks». Under each one of them hide many fragile herbs and small bugs. They are the «poteria» (φρύγανα) and they are an «ecosystem» -one by one and many of them together as groups. I must find out how to transplant them. I’d put them along the sides of the digs and trenches the bulldozers make.

I heard that in Germany they take these as gardens. It’s very fashionable to have a mediterranean «poteria» garden around your villa instead of «gazon» (trop banal). After I retire (or before, why not) I may become a specialist in this: plant «sacropotera spinosa» gardens around villas. (They would give burglars a lot of trouble to cross, btw. I must take a notice of that for my marketing campaign -if & when..)

-> Nana, how much for the «La Fauve» painting? Wow girl ! What’s this? Ladies and Gentlemen, for your sake and pleasure I took the liberty to borrow and upload Nana’s portrait and buste in this entry. I don’t know what it is or how it’s made, but its 100% Nana «to agrimi» (=animal qui vit a l’etat sauvage), Athina, my friend.


** While I was writing this and trying to «swallow», I looked up at the sky (to let out my usual *big sighs* ) and what do I see:




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El, I wondered if those were rocks or plants. Almost looks like moss-covered ruins in the background. The swallows, yes they came back here a couple weeks ago, the hummingbirds earlier and the warblers soon. Favorite swallow: purple martin; hummingbird: Anna’s; warbler: yellowthroat.

Monday April 10, 2006 – 06:08am (PDT)

A Doctor writes: Your «Yak» has had child. See Flickr. This will make you feel even more spring-like.

Tuesday April 11, 2006 – 08:37am (BST)

-> to Greg: I’m surrounded by birds, birds, birds, a couple of earthmovers (~sigh) and many many fresh dug terrasses with vineyards and gardens. There are two kinds of swallows, it seems. I understand now why ornithologists are a bit *nutsy*.

-> the Doctor takes pleasure in turning the knife in the wound.

Tuesday April 11, 2006 – 03:42am (PDT)

to Greg: I think that «my» spurges of Ikaria might look like those throrny srubs we see the wind roll and make fly in old «western» movies. How do you call?

Tuesday April 11, 2006 – 02:04pm (PDT)

Tumbleweed….we don’t have tumbleweed in England but we know all about the rain. Sounds like we would say «sheets of rain» from the conditions you describe…the Scots have a good word…Dreich … it would be ντρειχ in Greek tongue…that describes the kind of miserable soaking cold day. The swallows have come…and they sing…»

άνοιγ΄ άνοιγε ταν θύραν χελιδόνι
ου γαρ γέροντές έσμεν, αλλά παιδία. »

to quote a poet of the 7th century B.C.

«The swallows have come, Berlusconni has gone
Loudly sing «cuckou» »

To paraphrase an old English song.

Tuesday April 11, 2006 – 10:40pm (BST)

Sagebrush Elle, the dead ones rolling and blowing are called tumbleweeds. The desert on the east side of my state is covered with ’em.

Tuesday April 11, 2006 – 02:46pm (PDT)

Sorry to disagree Doc, but I call El’s rain mizzle.

Tuesday April 11, 2006 – 11:13pm (BST)

<<-terrific people->><<-terrific vocabularies->>
In my opinion, both «sagebrush» and «tumbleweed» are El’s thorny srubs, «astivi» (αστιβή) There are many kinds, all valuable in many ways. One of them hosts an edible herb inside it. It’s called «stamna-agathi» (Σταμναγκάθι). This herb makes a very expensive dish in fancy restaurants in Athens. This is the season for it, so El find it and take a photo. I hope it doesn’t «absorb light».

Wednesday April 12, 2006 – 01:05pm (EEST)

«mizzle» ! never heard that before! Another one for my «Derbyshire Dialect» collection. Thanks duck.

Wednesday April 12, 2006 – 07:53pm (BST)

«mizzle» is a nice word; I like «mmm» & «zzzz»s & «ll»s.
Thank you everybody. I’d rather look for the word in NewZealandese because the mizzle is not cold in Ikaria. It’s soaking wet and spooky and it makes you feel like bitting at someone’s throat.

Wednesday April 12, 2006 – 12:41pm (PDT)

I’m sure there are more wonderful words out there….!I would love to know the New Zealand equivalent. Drizzle is another word of similar meaning – but perhaps it sounds colder still, so not ideal. In case you were wondering, ‘duck’ is a Derbyshire endearment. ‘Aye up, me duck’ is a dialect way of saying ‘Hi there, love/ mate / pal» You sometimes hear a woman say it to another woman, but more commonly it is from a man to a woman in a friendly way. I had a boss once, who when he wanted me to do something always started his sentence with «Judy, duck,please could you…» So now, Eleni, you have a goat and a duck reading your blog, and the duck is especially happy that the swallows have arrived.

Wednesday April 12, 2006 – 11:00pm (BST)

«Papia mou» -so funny -:)) In place of «duck» in wet grassy places, I’d call you «kali mou» (=my good one or my pretty one) or cut short «kale». You must have heard that in Greek town streets. «kale Leni, stamata pia tis sahlamares…» =stop acting foolish (that’s for my blog -lol- created for and dedicated to ducks and goats, or I don’t love nobody and my scripts suck.)

Thursday April 13, 2006 – 12:25pm (PDT)

«the rain in Ikariain falls mainly on the mountains»


Ikaria After the storm 1

BAD: the electric network is old and very badly maintained, so lightnings
cause many blackouts.

Ikaria After the storm 2

GOOD: the lightnings show superwow in a blackouted landscape at night.


SO-SO: I tried to take a picture of a lightning and of course I failed. I mean, it didn’t come up as good as I expected. I also captured the rain on the trees and the strange light in the sky.

P.S. I may catch pneumonia with these acrobatics one day. I will not be my fault. It will be yours, oh my readers ! Start collecting money for my hospitalization…



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Μια χαρά είναι η αστραπή σου! «Ρομφαία» όπως την αποκαλείς!!!
Πολύ πετυχημένο!


Wednesday March 15, 2006 – 10:59pm (EET)