❤ ❤ ❤
Το Δάσος του Ράντη
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.
Until then, take a look the pictorial archives…
The News in Brief
#1-> I’ve finished work. All 3 projects have been completed and sent. There are no news, so I assume this is good news.
#2-> I walk a lot. I’m charging my batteries, as they say. I hope it will be warm next week so that I start to swim too. I won’t have to take «the 40-waves cure», but I must absolutely swallow and gargle a lot of salt water and clean my breathing system.
#3-> I drive to Rahes and I walk there mostly. I was asked to «test» the new paths there. It’s fun. The paths are designed in a very interesting way. They look as if they had always been there, but in fact they are not. This is ‘Land Art‘, very carefully concealed. My business is to check if this ‘Land Art’ makes sense as an activity as well. So far I can say that it does (though it takes an early wake-up, and this is very difficult in Ikaria. However, art demands for sarcrifices). A fruitfull sense of ‘total loss’ is achieved. You know… «it’s the road, not the destination» -that kind of —-
(I’ll return to the subject; I don’t feel very genius right now). 😛
#4-> ‘Doctor‘ made a slightly ironical comment to my last entry: «You are too modest«, he wrote. «I’m trying not to be, man, I’m trying. But they are not letting me!» I reply. From the point they suspected me of being a spy, an agent of the Turkish intelligence, a loose whore, a drug addict in the process of clean-up etc., now they are calling me «serene highness». Until we reach a compromise and I’m just called «Eleni«, «Elenitsa» or even better «to Elenaki» (the sweetest Greek diminutive form for a first name -and in neutral !…), I have to say that I’ll fully enjoy my royal title. When I was a young girl, my father who was very anti-royalist, never called me «princess» or «queen«. He used republican names instead, such as «skatoula» (=piece of shit), «andartissa» (=she-rebel), «katsika» (=she-goat), «teras» (=monster or freak), «agapi mou» (=my love), «moro mou» (=my baby).
#5-> Ah, that ‘Doctor’ again… He posted in Flickr a photo of an animal which broke my heart. As I usually do in such cases, I fought very hard against falling for it. I called it a «yak», I thought of it as the pet of the abominable Snowman of the Himalayas, then I tried to convince myself that it was mutant, or a by-product of the mad-cow disease …anyway, I tried and I tried in vain to calumniate the poor mamal. 😥 I had never seen a picture of it taken in its natural environment. I loved it! My case would be desperate and I’d present symptoms like Pasiphae’s,
if… my demon had not found for me a replacement.
This replacement is bound to die in a few weeks during Orthodox Easter-time in the evening while the church bells call for the Epitaph. Moral: «Never grow too fond of something that tastes good and you like to eat it». 😥
#6-> What the hell is this photo with the earth digger? 😛
Well, this is part of my plan to reconciliate with my nightmares. This big earth digger here is equiped with a BIG NAIL. It works with compressed air. It makes BIG HOLES in the earth. My father used to work with a similar (smaller) machine, which made holes in the earth, UNDER the earth. Unlike my father’s holes which were in places the sun never reached, the holes this BIG NAIL digs, are in very sunny places. Unlike my father’s holes where nothing could grow, many things can grow in and around the holes this BIG NAIL digs. In fact, this is just a digger after all. It brings new earth onto the surface. It’s up to us, isn’t it, to see what we will do with the mess afterwards.
Oh, readers… 😦
… I’m trying… don’t you see? I’m trying to …»swallow and take down an earth digger». (*)
Stand by me and perhaps I’ll make it. You may see me writing, but in fact I’m mostly a woman of action. I can’t attack an earth digger (maybe I don’t want to after all). I may «chew and swallow» it. (Oh Gof, I love me when I think B I G…)
(*) I used to think that the queen of Knossos’ name «Pasiphae» meant «eat all«. Eventually I think now that it means something like «the one who is gradually and totaly consumed in front of and seen by everybody» -simpler -> «self eaten in public«. Doesn’t it sound terrible? Doesn’t it make you think that the ancients were «gothic» etc. Well, not at all actually. «Pasiphae» was originaly a name for a female goddess (not of the Olympian 12theon but prior to it) and a very friendly one. We still see her «eat herself in public» today. Who may this goddess be?
φχααρστώωωω!.. *γαληνότατη* for the photo of the *green machine* (Ikaria #160)
You must be in the middle of a machine.. oop, no, I meant a storm. Is there a storm now?
Friday April 7, 2006 – 04:50pm (EEST)
I was fishing on the ocean beach last month and met three other guys fishing. Was talking to one of them, Jupiter was his name (really), and I told him I loved the ocean because it made me think, made me meditative, contemplative, made me ponder the mysteries of the waves, the tides, time and space. He said, «yeah, it clears up my sinuses too.» So yes, you better gargle sea water girl.
Friday April 7, 2006 – 06:56am (PDT)
You are a machine too !
I know what kind of machine you are.
You are a «housewife» machine !
Imagine my mood: it’s Friday evening and still at work. I remembered your ‘barn’ in Ikaria and how exceptionaly neat it is. You ARE a housewife -in every good sense of the word and pls don’t punch me for this. One way or another you ‘ll swalow and tidy up everything, outside of you or inside you or maybe both. You are a good *machine*.
* * *
__hey (1), I’m gonna change my ‘icon’ here. Don’t be scared by the new one. I have my ups and downs too (+spring), you know. BTW, when are you going to «add an RSS feed» in your blog?
__hey (2), the ‘face carved on stone’ man is fun; I assume he is the one who wrote the «mechanical analysis» under «Ikaria #160 in Flickr. You are right, ‘stone man’. Me, I see things in a much smaller scale -«micro-mechanics», that’s me, hehe 😉
Friday April 7, 2006 – 08:21pm (EEST)
Yes, it is I Nana. It’s OK that you see the micro and I the macro, because of course there are worlds within worlds. Elle I think sees both.
Friday April 7, 2006 – 11:20am (PDT)
yes there’s a big storm. BIG WIND bends trees, dries the land and the sea is white (photo-squalls x 5). There will be rain, they say, in the weekend.
yes, by some miracle there’s power. It’s perhaps because the local elections are getting nearer (October). No electricity, no votes, so simple.
yes, I’m a housewife (machine). I behave like that whenever I feel at home. Economy (Oikonomy), Ecology (Oikology) and (N)Oikokyra, the Greek word for «housewife» derive from the same «OIKOS» =house, foyer, habitat.
yes, me too like the «Jupiters» of this world and humour such as e.g. «poems, flowers, sounds and senses etc. and you can open a can with it too» -lol : I’m thinking of writing «A Poet’s Survival Handbook». What da ya tank av dat?
yes, (thanks ‘greg’) I see both. I’m so glad I followed a wise uncle of mine’s advice «1st rule: earn your own daily loaf of bread! -no other rules.»
yes, work, work, work, Nana, come Easter holiday Ikaria play x x x
*who’s going to guess who is the goddess who «eats herself in public» ? A tip for those who know Greek: think of my name… *
Friday April 7, 2006 – 01:17pm (PDT)
«Pasiphae», the «eat all of herself» is the Waning Moon, the particular goddess who governs the particular phase of the waning of the moon. In common everyday Greek the moon is «fegari». This is a figurative word describing a property: it shines and lightens. The «good» Greek word for the moon is «Selini» or in some ancient texts «Selana». It means something like «aurora». The Greeks call themselves ‘Elines’ which used to be «Selines» =the tribe of the moon. As it usually happens it was their enemies who called them by this name, because the ‘Elines’ walked (raided and invaded) at night under the moonlight and they were not afraid of the demons of the darkenesses.
You name is «Eleni», the same word actually as «Selini», the particular goddess of the particular phase of the full moon -in popular lore «the face of the woman we see on the round disk of the moon». Very strong name, this is why it was given to the Beautiful Helen of Troy and then to one of the most powerful female saints of Christianity, Roman Empress and Holly Woman, Saint Helen.
ουφ τέλειωσα -τι κερδίζω;
Νανα, τρομερή εικόνα ! Παναγία μου ! Μόνο που σε μικρό είναι πολύ σκοτεινή. Την είδα που άλλαζε ενώ έγραφα «comment». Είσαι «on line»; Το Σάββατο βράδυ τα «αγρίμια» δεν βγαίνουν στην πόλη;
Saturday April 8, 2006 – 10:09pm (EEST)
κερδιζεις ενα CD με τη ‘Σονατα υπο το Σεληνοφως’ του Μπετοβεν και την αγαπη μου, αγγελε-φυλακα που ξερεις κ 5 γραμματα.
Saturday April 8, 2006 – 01:07pm (PDT)
ze nnews im mbrief
-> I have a cold, I have a sore throat, I have a headache, I have dry lips, I have a red nose, I have red eyes and they are running. I have a dribbling mouth. I have a lot of toilet paper and the waste paper basket is by my side. I empty it every 4 hours. The content will be good fertilizer for the garden.
-> I don’t have fever. I don’t have cramps. I don’t have stomachache. I don’t have diarrhoea. I don’t have bird flu.
-> I don’t have malaria. I don’t have two red hot iron bars in my nostrils (I’ve checked it in the mirror).
ozer mnews im mbrief
-> I can write & I can think too -very hard, slowly and exclusively about my nose, but I can think.
-> I can’t smoke. I can’t have coffee. I can’t eat. I can’t remember what french fries (Ikarian style -my favorite) taste like.
here iz zome mbore mnews
-> I delivered the final draft of something and it was well received.
-> I went out to see a piece of land (a cliff actually). I liked that piece of land.
-> I met the man with the earth mover (bulldozer) who is going to make a road to the land I liked.
He is going to destroy at least half of the beauty of that land (not to mention that the road will be very risky and probably slide down and disappear altogether), however the price of the land will rise because it will be ‘accesible’ then.
-> In spite everything I liked that man!?!
These 4 factors combined together undermined and weakened my (overloaded) system, so I caught a virus (as it usually happens with me) and now I’m running on «safety mode» tzzz krk krk bzizk apstchou !…
+ zome goodz mnews
-> today waz ze firzt day of zpring. «Earini Isimeria» = equal day-equal night. Εαρινή Ισημερία.
-> many ozers too, not only me, are ill, the zame az me.
-> I got rid of the idea that I am harming the tourism of Ikaria with my pictures in Flickr.
-> Someone is coming tonight to rub my back with warm alcohol. I will be allowed (and I’ll allow myself) to groan, sigh & moan during the process. I’ll be allowed (and allow myself) to be ill.
more zome other day
iz enybody interezted in reading ze story ov my life?
I feel like writing ze story ov my life rightz now. Or maybe it’z becauze I’m ill.
I’ll thimk amboud it ndomorrow.
P.S. did you know? I was going to post that photo of the sea here anyway but then as I opened my blog I saw the last of Jimmy P’s comments. I dedicate this photo to him. No one should deprive anyone of such a view of the sea. It must remain public.
Grazie 1000 per la dedica, sono onorato.
Wednesday March 22, 2006 – 01:41am (CET)
Get well soon, El! It’s difficult to read the blog when you type with a stuffy nose 😉
Telling your life story, eh? That sounds like it has a bit more soul-stealing potential than a photograph to me.
Tuesday March 21, 2006 – 10:22pm (EST)
The sea is endless, life is not, that’s what it means.
Tuesday March 21, 2006 – 07:39pm (PST)
Είμαι γκι εγκώ γκρυωμένος γκαι η μπύντη μου είναι μπουλωμμένη.
We look forward for spring and here’s what we get… hahaha
Wednesday March 22, 2006 – 01:04pm (EET)
There is terrific tempest of the equinox blowing right now right here. I won’t go out to take pictures. I’m staying in drinking tsipouro (like ‘grapa’ hey Jimmy?) in warm water with honey. Good medicine… Felicia, my cat, sings me her songs. She is pregnant.
Thursday March 23, 2006 – 03:49am (PST)
iv it heppns agen, edd sam sinnamon barrk & a fiu cloves 2 ze hottt tsipouromelo… «u uil rimembrr mi» 😛
Wednesday May 13, 2009 – 10:03pm (EEST)
copied that 😌 tanx
Wednesday May 13, 2009 – 12:38pm (PDT)
BAD: the electric network is old and very badly maintained, so lightnings
cause many blackouts.
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…
Μια χαρά είναι η αστραπή σου! «Ρομφαία» όπως την αποκαλείς!!!
Wednesday March 15, 2006 – 10:59pm (EET)
during the weekend there was rain and rain and all of a sudden a thunderbolt hit the telephone cables of my lazy quiet valley.
I was not there. I was ‘downtown’ scaring people in the bars.
Next morning my modem was jammed. I called Nana on the mobile and she told me a tip (a crazy, ugly thing to do to your modem, so I’m not telling anyone else) and my modem worked again.
So here I am back. Have I missed anything?
Yes Elle, the world spun around a few more times and lots happened, some of it beautiful, some of it sad, and some of it both beautiful and sad. But may impose on you a question or two? Athina, is she Nana? And Angelos, do I recall you mentioned he is an editor? If so, may I ask an editor of what? He is also a builder of trails?
Tuesday February 21, 2006 – 10:43am (PST)
iiiiiiii :::::: …I told you to open the lid of the modem, push and hold down a button for 5 «. This is called ‘reset’. It’s not «a crazy and ugly thing» to do to a modem !
It wasn’t in the manual, that’s all. The same with your car, the manual doesn’t say «if it doesn’t start, go out and push» !
Btw, I’m coming down to Ik. I want to go around dressed as the ‘real me’ not the opposite. I’ll be a robot with many hidden lids and hidden buttons and ..no manual !!!
(like Emile Zola’s book, though I don’t earn my bread like that ‘Nana’.)
P.S. an Ikarian boy calls me with a heavy «(…th)…n..n..nnaaA»
Tuesday February 21, 2006 – 10:41pm (EET)
Elle, Theodorakis was inspired by Ikaria for his «Carnaval» – did it have the same effect on you? Is that why you went?
PS – Greg, I think Angelos builds many different paths – routes to the heart of Ikaria, but not just hiking trails … tell me I am right El?
Tuesday February 21, 2006 – 10:02pm (GMT)
Ah, of course! Athina, «Nana,» glad to meet the both of you!
Tuesday February 21, 2006 – 03:44pm (PST)
nana, don’t play ‘kraftwerk’ girl to me. I know you have a soul. It may look like one of your little machines, but everybody’s souls have to look like something ::
Wednesday February 22, 2006 – 03:05am (PST)
αααααα»»»»»»»»» νανουλα «»»»αγαπη μου»»»
ερχεσαι Ικαρια :::::::: Καθαρη Δυετερα?
τωρα το καταλαβα
Wednesday February 22, 2006 – 12:44pm (PST)
I don’t know if it was out of place and rather ‘un-Greek’ to speak about an investment ‘in green’, but I don’t have to be born and brought up in Greece to understand CARNIVAL !It’s just broke out here and it took me by surprise because I had forgotten about it and now I have to catch up!
In Carnival here they don’t wear costumes. They dress up as their opposites -to their opposite’s grotesque extremes! So kids dress like old (in ugliest, most degenerate, etc.), men dress and behave like women (with as big as possible stress on the weakenesses of the sex), women make like men (the same stress on the weak side) -I repeat: to their grotesque most colorful extremes!
So you see a respectable tradesman appear as a nymphomanian bride, a beautiful young girl be a black hairy gorilla and the carpenter of the village dig out an impossible costume and show up as Lord of Bam-boum-burry 🙂 Obscenity, liberality and wild dance are allowed (even encouraged), on condition (repeat) on condition that the ‘mascarades‘ or (local) ‘moutsounarides‘ are dressed up and covered so well that they can’t be recognized. If the are (repeat) if they are recognized, either they either leave or find very fast a different way to be funny -which is very hard and takes a real actor to do.
I am going to…
Oh no ! I’m not going to tell you what I’ll dress up like !
I’m just saying what I said before; that I am going to be my opposite -to the grotesque extreme!
I’ll be lost- not to be found for 3 days -I hope.
Sorry readers !
(Send me the map next week, will you?)
(By then I may be good girl Eleni again.)
Nana’s recipe: buy the least fresh, cheapest fish, one that’s as dead as a fish can be (use Felicia to test -the fish must be really rotten). Boil it in very little water on a very slow fire for about an hour (2 hours is the best but then it’s inhuman – in that case If I were you, I’d use a timer or a remote control or switch off the plugs of the house to turn off the fire. You wouldn’t do that manually.) Now the scum should be unbearable and you know that you have the best all-natural, chemical-free «super-dead-fish-glue»!!!
With a mask or (better) a clip on your nose, take away the fish bones, and add and stir in some flour, if you want your glue to be thicker.
Nana’s super glue can attach hair (like whiskers, moustache, beard, armpit hair and other) just any kind of fiber on your skin. It wouldn’t be torn off or drop off never mind how much you move, grim or perspire. The super fish glue will also grant you a super dead fish smell which will enchant your partners in carnival and it will keep them in a safe distance from you so that they don’t even think of trying to uncover your face. Thus you will be able to act as crazy as you like.
Saturday February 18, 2006 – 12:46am (EET)
Wow! You Greeks are insane! The only costume-appropriate occasion we Americans have is Halloween (Oct. 31) but that doesn’t sound remotely similar (children going door-to-dooor for candy). Even Halloween is routinely a cause of controversy with out more conservative citizens (the ones who elected our president). Each year there are an increasing number of articles in the news about how it’s unchristian devil-worship, authored by folks who wouldn’t know a good time if it bit them on the ass. So, on that note, Happy Carnival!! Wish I was there.
Sunday February 19, 2006 – 12:12am (EST)
I see you are getting prettier and prettier and more romantic with time! Do you also smell of Nana’s ‘super dead fish glue’? Remove that photo, or I may be in love with you!
Sunday February 19, 2006 – 01:04pm (EET)
I won’t remove it! I want you all to fry in the fires of passion for me!
Sunday February 19, 2006 – 04:19am (PST)
We shall have to refer to this phenomenon when we discuss «drama in life» again. It is very therapeutic, Ο γιατρος approves.
Monday February 20, 2006 – 02:51pm (GMT)
First I’d like to thank everyone of my silent readers. I’d like to meet you all and shake your hands.
Then I’d like to thank S. who understands drama like noone else I know and he is so quick to respond to it. Eeh, look out! by drama we don’t mean broken hearts and everybody dead in the end, ok? a comedy is drama too. I’d love to work with and I’d have to learn a lot from a person like you…
I’d like to thank ɢ because he is a man of good taste, high principles and global views. I will always wonder how you found me, so don’t bother to explain how it happened.
I’d like to thank ᴀ, my guardian angel, as well as many others’. Who’s your guardian angel? I’d like to know that.
M, N, J, I already feel that we are very close to each other, with everyone of you for a different reason. ‘Thank you’ would sound too formal.
Why am I writing this? I’m not going to commit suicide. I’m writing it because I have to confess that I’m not a real writer and I have never made a book. I’m a script writer and I work for TV ! OK, I have studied a lot, the classics and the moderns and the post-moderns and I’ve taken courses in anything under the sun (the sun? of Brussels?) and I can speak 3,5 languages, but my first job was in a TV studio and I was the script girl in a soap opera. More about it in some future entry in this blog. I just wrote this for you to know (and I’m very sorry if I have dissapointed anybody) that I’m not some kind of big shot writer in disguise.
Ben bof ουφ -I’ve said it!
Now, here are my doubts. I shot some reeaaly veeery interesting seascapes the other day with the storm. Then today I spent a lot of time in front of my screen watching them and wondering what to do. They look weird. D’you know why? I had covered the lense with car grease! There was so much salt dust and snow and spray, so I was afraid that my camera would catch some severe cold and rust and get electronic flu. The first photos I took were destroyed and came out as «photos from a shipwreck», because I was so worried to protect my camera that I didn’t see the waves coming on me or the loose earth at the brow of the cliff. So I had to do something. No want no miss such a storm. Not to mention that I was all wet and I didn’t want to waste my wet situation (and possible pneumonia) for nothing and bugle retreat.
My camera worked fine in the spray and then I was able to clean it from the grease, but …. my photos came out in a light yellow hue!
From the TV stage to the wild seas and storms of the Aegean sea… It makes sense now…
Thursday February 9, 2006 – 02:50pm (PST)
There’s no shame in writing for TV. I’d wager that the average line on TV get’s 10 times as much audience as the average line of print.
Lovely cat there! That girl should try not to catch a cold!
Friday February 10, 2006 – 12:12am (EST)
You really taking off ! From now on I’ll call you a ‘pocket size all terrain 2×2 intellectual’. How about that?
What a photo!!!!
Friday February 10, 2006 – 11:17am (EET)
No problem with TV! Loved the story and the photos!
Friday February 10, 2006 – 10:01am (GMT)
Friday February 10, 2006 – 06:24am (PST)
Thank you everybody! 🥰 Felicia says hello ☺
Friday February 10, 2006 – 02:30pm (PST)