Magical things are patient


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“The universe is full of magical things patiently waiting for our wits to grow sharper.”~

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Omnia magica Ikaria
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Dear readers,
you are certainly familiar with the aforementioned quote. It’s usually credited to W.B.Yeats, however, that’s not true. The famous sentence was written by someone who was amazed when he saw for the first time through a magnifying lens the astonishing details of a beautiful wild flower! Therefore, let my blog article be for you today that magnifying lens. Through it you will be able to see some tiny beautiful details and short elusive flashes in the monotonous everyday life of our island. I’m talking about the small, rare and hidden picture instead of the big one -the one which tourism lately has turned into cliché. Let’s save ourselves from that by putting out some powerful subjective worldviews! As my friend Nana whose article I am copying here, says, this is about a…

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Afternoon in the desert of ravens 😳 by Nana Agrimi on Flickr
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«A parallel reality: a collection of special moments recorded through the years and stored in our blogs and Flickr streams, from surreal alienation to oddity, from encounters with animals to performances and improvised rituals, from riddles and witchcraft to extravagance, provocation or simple pleasurable moments and postcard-like snapshots, that’s my way to celebrate Dodecaemeron, the Greek 12 festal days of Christmas and New Year, when earth and skies merge, as they say, and daily toilers like us should stop and rest and say to themselves…»

[read more…]In Nana to agrimi's blog: 'omnia magica'

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~~p.s. A friend asked why these pictures aren’t uploaded to Flickr. One answer is that many of them would create unwanted activity. The main reason, however, is aesthetic. As I’m saying in a comment under my snapshot of Nana’s post on Flickr, first and foremost this thing should be seen a whole.
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⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
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«Misokolaki» and other scary tales from Ikaria in comics


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(Ελληνικά στο μπλογκ της Νανάς).
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Finding a moment to advertise this comic art drawings and book exhibition which takes place in Athens next month.

comic art ikaria 1Kavo Papasbar tesera

16 February - 2 April 2009 in Bartesera, 25 Kolokotroni str. Athens
 Opening: 16 April - 8 pm

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misikolaki 2

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Among these stories there's "Misokolaki",
the kid with half his bottom chopped off.

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Misokolaki

– A Greek folktale from Ikaria island –

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misikolaki Ikaria 4

.(«The witch under the pear tree», drawing  by  Thanassis Psaros)

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Once upon a time on a faraway Greek island, an old man and an old woman lived alone in a small house near a forest. The old man was a woodcutter.
One night the old man and the old woman were peeling broad beans and putting them into a pot on the stove.
«If only we had children to bring a little joy and happiness into our lives» the old woman sighed loudly.
«Yes», said the old man. «If only we had children.»
Before they went to bed that night, the woman said a special prayer.
«O God», she prayed, «How I wish that all the broad beans in the pot could become children!»
Early the next morning the woodcutter and his wife were woken by a terrible noise. Their house was full of children. Some were playing, some were singing and some were quarreling. Others were crying out for food. The house was filled with a terrible racket. The old woodcutter was beside himself: the noise was more than he could bear. He grabbed his axe and began to chase the children. The frightened children darted everywhere to escape, jumping out of the windows and pouring out of the door. Within a few minutes they had all gone.
The house was suddenly silent. The old man and the old woman looked at each other in dismay.
«Now we ‘re all alone again», said the old woman.
«Yes», said the old man sadly. «What are we going to do?»
Suddenly a tiny voice came from under the bed. «I’m here», it said. A young boy crept out. He looked a little frightened; half of his bottom had been chopped off by the woodcutter’s axe.
The old lady and the old man looked at him in joy and wonder.
«Oh, little boy», said the old woman. «Don’t be afraid. You can live with us. We will make you well again.»
The young boy was happy to have found a home. The old couple gave him clothes and food, and a bed to sleep in. They called him Misokolaki, which means «Little half-bottom».
The next day the woodcutter told Misokolaki that now that he lived with them, he would have to help them with their work.
Misokolaki’s first chore was to guard the pear tree in the orchard. Every year, when the pears ripened, a cunning old fox would come and steal them. The old man gave Misokolaki a wooden flute to play while he sat in the tree.
Before Misokolaki left for the orchard, the old man warned him: «Be careful of the fox. It’s cunning and it may try to trick you.»
All day Misokolaki sat in the pear tree and played his flute. Then, at dusk, along came the fox. It looked up into the tree where the boy was playing his flute.
«Hey, Misokolaki!» the fox called out. «You play your flute so fair, please throw me down a pear.»
«Go away», said Misokolaki. You can’t have any pears.»
«But my little ones are hungry», the fox said, with tears in its eyes.
Misokolaki felt sorry for the fox and threw down some pears.
«Please, Misokolaki», said the cunning old fox. «Help me find the pears. It’s dark and I can’t see.»
Misokolaki forgot the old man’s warnings and climbed down to help the fox. No sooner had he touched the ground than the fox grabbed him and threw him into a sack. The fox threw the sack over its shoulder and set off for its home.
On the way, the fox stopped by a stream. It put down the sack and went to the water to have a drink.
Misokolaki quickly wriggled out of the sack. He filled it with rocks and prickly bushes and ran away.
When the fox returned, it threw the sack over its shoulder and continued on its way. Soon the fox began to feel something pricking its back
«Stop pinching me, Misokolaki!» the fox kept calling out, all the way home.
When the fox arrived home, its cubs danced about with joy. They were very hungry. They burnt lots of branches in the oven to make it red hot so that they could cook Misokolaki.
But when the fox emptied out the sack, only rocks and prickles tumbled out on to the floor. The fox was angry and it vowed that next time, Misokolaki would not escape.
The next day, Misokolaki again kept watch in the pear tree. At dusk, the fox returned to the orchard. Misokolaki was in the pear tree, playing his flute.
«Hey, Misokolaki!» the fox called out. «You play your flute so fair, please throw me down a pear.»
Misokolaki pretended he couldn’t hear. He kept playing his flute.
The fox began to cry loudly. «My little ones are hungry!» it sobbed. The tears flowed from its eyes like rivers.
Misokolaki felt sorry for the fox and threw down some pears. But the cunning old fox called out: «Please, Misokolaki, help me find the pears. It’s dark and I can’t see.»
The fox’s voice was so sweet that once again Misokolaki forgot all about the old man»s warning. He climbed down to help the fox. No sooner had he touched the ground than the fox grabbed him and threw him into the sack. This time the fox tied the sack very tightly so that Misokolaki couldn’t escape.
The fox carried the sack straight back home, without stopping on the way.
As the fox neared home, it called out to its cubs to light the oven. The fox untied the sack and let Misokolaki out, and the cubs danced around him with glee. They were so hungry that they could hardly wait to eat him.
Misokolaki would have to think quickly if he was to escape from the oven.
Now, the fox’s oven was built into the wall. It was so high off the ground that the fox had to stand on a stool to reach it. As the fox reached up to open the oven door, Misokolaki quickly grabbed its hind legs and with one mighty thrust, he pushed the fox headfirst into the oven.
The cubs scattered in fright and Misokolaki ran all the way home, as fast as his legs could carry him.
The old man and the old woman were overjoyed to see him. They had gone to the orchard to look for him, and were very worried when they couldn’t find him. Misokolaki told them all about his adventure with the fox. The old man called out to his neighbours from the village and invited them to come and celebrate. They were all happy because the fox would never steal their fruit again.
Misokolaki took out his flute and began to play. The villagers sang and danced until the sun rose up behind the mountains in the east.
(From a book by Petro Alexiou, illustrated by Clare Watson, HARCOURT BRACE JOVANOVICH, PUBLISHERS (Australia) © 1989 on behalf of Petro Alexiou ISBN 0 7295 0833 1, ISBN 0 7295 0800 5 (series). The author dedicates to his Ikarian mother who told him this tale.)
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Note:  The original Greek version which has survived in Ikaria is more poignant, rougher and bloodier. The wish for children is not intentional but rather trivial. The ‘broad bean’ children are not just naughty and restless. They cry and yell for food! The woodcutter does not just chase the children out of the house; he actually kills them one after the other with his hatchet! Misokolaki is spared if only he can carry out two tasks: keep the old couple company by playing the flute and climb on that precious pear tree to keep the thieves away. Finally, instead of a fox, there is an evil witch who eats human flesh. There is also the daughter of the witch to who the witch trusts Misokolaki to roast and she leaves, but Misokolaki turns loose, throws the daughter into the oven and he escapes. So when the witch returns, she eats her own daughter’s roasted liver thinking that it is Misokolaki’s. When she realises what has happened, she is furious and she rushes to the pear tree to find Misokolaki and kill him. Misokolaki is there, but the witch can’t climb the pear tree and get him. Blinded as she is by now with furry, she takes Misokolaki’s advice that the best way to shoot up and reach him is to stick a red hot iron bar up her ass! The witch does exactly that and she shoots up to the sky! She falls back on the ground and bursts in pieces. Misokolaki gets home to his step parents. They are very proud of him and they live happily ever after.

misikolaki Ikaria

 

.Comments

(9 total)

Great presentation as always, good witch. What’s your way to shoot up?

Sunday January 25, 2009 – 10:46pm (EET)

Imagination.

Monday January 26, 2009 – 03:44am (PST)

As children, we were not supposed to read such grostesque tales yet they are the tales I remember best! My favorite ones came from a small island called Adakale.

Monday January 26, 2009 – 10:18am (EST)

Tales of warning about hunger! also about family programming -hep;

Monday January 26, 2009 – 10:25pm (EET)

(Pear trees seem to figure in stories a lot.
Take for instance this one:
http://www.pitt.edu/~dash/type1423.html#boccaccio
Eat pears, make a hut out of pear-wood, but avoid sitting up in pear trees.)

Tuesday January 27, 2009 – 02:32pm (CET)

(especially if they are like this!:)
thorny sage-leafed pear tree

Tuesday January 27, 2009 – 03:02pm (CET)

@ Can : yes, we are brought up to dislike the gruesome, yet there is truth in the gruesome. Speaking of islands and tales, the same tale exists in Mykonos! Can you imagine?

@ egotoagrimi : ok, but don’t overdo it with programming, ok? Leave some ends loose…

@ Simon G : thanks God you are here! I was worried that the winds in France took you off! Yes, the pear tree seems to be the next best after the apple tree in European lore. And the old varieties must have had quite a lot of thorns. That sheds light to another feat of Misokolaki. He was a fakir like Nana :lol

Tuesday January 27, 2009 – 12:30pm (PST)

It’s a tale about a young fakir?!?

Wednesday January 28, 2009 – 10:39pm (EET)

!!!

Thursday January 29, 2009 – 08:41pm (EET)

UPDATE

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Why why why none of these folktales speak about our  «immortal soul»? Is it only the body then? When somebody dies we have to remember him or her the way he or she looked in flesh and bones. If this is hard!.. Isn’t it better to pay the church to do that?

http://simonsterg.wordpress.com/2009/12/09/the-hunters-five-sons/

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Legends about Ikaria : The Forest of Radi


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~That’s a beautifully wiggly forest!~
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Το Δάσος του Ράντη

  

About an old magic forest and the footpaths

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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!
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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…
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Don’t insist on Sibylla


Ancient Sibylla

Sybilla Ikaria

 

Μη με ρωτατε για τα δαση που καιγονται στην Ελλαδα τα καλοκαιρια. Τα εχω ξαναπει. Λιγο σιβυλλικα ισως ήταν, αλλα έτσι ειμαι εγω. Τι να κανουμε; Ουτε να με κρεμασουν θα ηθελα, ουτε να κυβερνησω. Μη με ρωτατε. 😜

 

Comments

(1 total)

oh… oh… 😲 😲

In Eleni's blog: 'Rediscover The Countryside' In Nana to agrimi's blog: 'Rediscover The Countryside' In Nana to agrimi's blog: 'iT’s gOt To rAin nOw!' In Nana to agrimi's blog: 'ΤΟ ΤΖΑΜΠΑ ΠΕΘΑΝΕ!!!'

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⭐ ⭐ ⭐
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Sunday February 15, 2009

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Days of Meltemi


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It’s not a writer’s block; it’s lobotomy. Look at the waves as they go up and down at dusk after the wind has died out. So fully they wash the mind from thoughts. This is the meltemi, the Etesian winds of the ancients. In the morning the mountains are clouded and the tourists wonder, “Is it going to rain?” Of course not. This is only wind, friendly breeze; full of good vapor, makes the land go wet and cool down. Cleans the beach from cigarette buts; provides good sleep as well and sweet dreams –my friend, the northwestern Maistros. Blow on blow on. Bring me news.

***Sorry AKK, I didn’t fulfill your request to broadcast the “Play Safe with Waves -3/1 rule of thumb” in this entry. I wanted to. Because I understand the need for some safety. But as soon as I uploaded the photo, I got carried away. And you know…, a thought crossed my mind; as a sailor’s wife maybe I shouldn’t think or talk about playing with the waves anymore. It’s not for decency’s sake. It’s superstition! Let Nana and the others do that for me from now on. Non?

f i l a k i a  ♥
40 wa cu Slide Shows.S. . .

   

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Comments

(6 total)

«Φύσα Μαϊστρο δροσερέ κι αέρα του πελάγου να πας τα χαιρετίσματα στου Σιδερή τη μάνα…» Sunday July 15, 2007 – 10:27am (EEST)
these days when the wind blows they say «oh it’s gonna catch fire! oh it’s gonna be no ferry! oh it’s gonna be no swim!. Anf when it’s cloudy they say «oh it’s gonna rain!» And when it’s hot, they say etc. But you (and Nana in her own wild funny way) say, WE LOVE IT! To you the wind brings news. To Nana it dries the sweat from under her breasts. How can you fight against MASS PHOBIAS? sO bravely ~ hope-making *machines* Monday July 16, 2007 – 10:09pm (EEST)
Thanks guys. I love you all – I’m sitting here miserable cos I’ve hurt my back, then I switch on this machine and AKK makes me laugh about cyanide in tsipouro, and the girls celebrate the wind…. I feel better already! Monday July 16, 2007 – 10:34pm (BST)
@ AKK = meltemi wind «dries the sweat from under my breasts»? (quoting Eleni) OH LALA! Tuesday July 17, 2007 – 03:24pm (EEST)
@Jude: oh dear Jude, get well soon! Our small circus is here for you to provide distraction for the mind so that the body and soul are left in peace and they heal – x @AKK: go thank somebody else. as you know we don’t have any other choice. we can’t help but being *hope-making-machines*. It’s our kishmet. @Athina: I am not given «dirty compliments» like that anymore. I am considered «respectable» now. @AKK: «Sweat under the breasts»! ha ha ha -:)) oh boys!.. What flavour? Apricot? With cyanide or without? Tuesday July 17, 2007 – 12:57pm (PDT)

speaking of kishmet I remembered our blog friend ‘Can’ who wrote to me the other day and said that «Meltem» is a common female name in Turkey. I suppose it’s something like «Breeze» (the Americans like this name a lot) or the Greek Avra (Αύρα). It is good to know that the name has a positive sense verified by tradition. So when the meltemi spoils your beach days, think of it as a beautiful woman and …take the mountains! Go hiking. By the way, does anybody remember this incredible picture? It’s was a gift by the makers of the play and it features in the hikingIkaria group files. We have talked about it already in the past.

Tuesday July 17, 2007 – 01:06pm (PDT)

Αφιερωμένο στην Αθηνά και σε κανέναν άλλον!


Arriving in Athens and staying indoors and doing stupid things, while I should be in Ikaria. Nana went down with melancholy.

I have a few pictures. I dedicate them to Nana, the 3 rd star of my life. She is actually in a very similar place. I want her to be inspired and to have me inspired back! You others may enjoy our interaction for free..
^^’
 

   

Comments

(4 total)

Aiih, thaaank uuu agapi mas. Both of us liked the collage veeery much!!! We did get *inspired* -especially D.T. We Owe You Back!!! It’s zsuper to know that you watch over us!

Tuesday July 3, 2007 – 01:05pm (EEST)

και γαμώ τα κολαζ! η μικρη μας θεα  Νανα…

Wednesday July 4, 2007 – 12:06am (EEST)

Την τρέλα μου! Εκεί επιμονή. Και θάλασσα… Αφού είπαμε, δεν υπάρχουν θάλασσες.:P

Monday July 16, 2007 – 04:25pm (PDT)

υπαρχουν

Tuesday July 17, 2007 – 01:18pm (PDT)


And beaches I do


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WHITE MAGIC

protected by a
spell and not for sale

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Should I or shouldn’t …I did it again. What a headache that has been! It’s (b)lasted for 2 days…  Whatever… The spell worked. I didn’t take this photo to be in a museum. I protect my topics with whatever I’ve got.  Aooch! (it will go away with a kiss)

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Read the story in more logical (?) terms in

Flickr>> group>> Ikaria>> discussions>> topic:

“The power of some photographs”

not so innocent caravan cantina

ta leme

~eleni~

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Comments

(13 total)

Δεν καταλάβατε τίποτα; Δεν πειράζει. Ούτε κι εγώ. Πάντως η δουλειά έγινε. Κι εγώ όταν τελειώνει μια τέτοια δουλειά, είμαι υποχρεωμένη να δίνω δημόσια αναφορά. Αλλιώς τα ξόρκια χαλάνε.

Thursday June 21, 2007 – 02:25pm (PDT)

I have ready long message to post in Flickr group Ikaria. Revealing a bit of the secret -as we have agreed. Just hope you haven’t changed your mind, oh powerful one.

Saturday June 23, 2007 – 02:39pm (EEST)

Great photo of a gorgeous location! Thank you for sharing it with us. Warmest, Konstantinos

Sunday June 24, 2007 – 04:13pm (EEST)

@ konstantine : I have re-edited the entry and added links. Follow them. It’s an interesting case of how a beautiful photo can save a beautiful place.
@ AKK : Nana sends you her love for what you did in Messakti. She says that in Heiligedamm the leaders of the famous march across the fields were two men around your age.

Sunday June 24, 2007 – 06:55am (PDT)

I had posted an ironic answer (msg#452) when you asked «Does Photography help to preserve the Environment?» in the hikingIkaria group. Now I feel very bad (like a «Doubting Thomas») and I want to do something about it. Let me make the announcement of this incredible «magical realism» story in the group. A COOL PHOTOGRAPH DOES HELP save the environment as long as THE RIGHT PEOPLE are inspired and INVOLVED (:- «spellbound» -:)

(Μπαμπα κουλ γερο πουρό αγγελούκο …η οικογένειά σου κι όλοι οι κοντινοί σου άνθρωποι πρέπει να είναι περήφανοι για σένα. Πραγματικά ήταν ένας οικογενειάρχης σαν κι εσένα αρχηγός στη δική μου φάλαγγα όταν διασχίζαμε τα χωράφια στο Ροστόκ. Από πάνω μας πετούσαν ελικόπτερα -και ψιλοχεζόμουνα ‘egotogrimi’- όμως εκείνος και οι φίλοι του μας οδηγούσαν με αποφασίστικότητα και γνώση κατευθείαν στο στόχο. Το οποίο βέβαια και πέτυχε. Ζήτω το *generation fusion* λοιπόν)

Monday June 25, 2007 – 03:03pm (EEST)

Κάποιοι άνθρωποι πλησιάζοντας τα 50 τους είναι πια σίγουροι γι’ αυτά που αξίζουν στη ζωή. Ο χρόνος μετράει πια αντίστροφα κι αρχίζουν να κτίζουν αυτό που θα αφήσουν πίσω τους. Το μόνο που χρειαζόμαστε είναι έμπνευση. Κι εσείς την παρέχετε άπλετα.

Tuesday June 26, 2007 – 02:25pm (EEST)

I’ve been away so I’m just catching up. Bravo Angele, Effy and Eleni – well done and thanks, great to know things will be unchanged when I visit again…xxx

Tuesday June 26, 2007 – 10:42pm (BST)

Hey Jude! Visiting in September, right? Hope I am there!..

Thursday June 28, 2007 – 10:04am (PDT)

Hi Eleni. I hope so, though it is all a bit vague at the moment and only talked about as something that may or may not happen….(but the vagueness gets weaker as the summer progresses and the rain here doesn’t stop)

PS. A friend of mine runs a small holiday company (www.indigo-holidays.co.uk) and wants me to go to Symi, as that is where her business partner is based ( I do some work for them), but I told her yesterday that if I was to go to Greece at all this year, it has to be Ikaria! So maybe I will extend my trip and do a strange combination of Ikaria followed by symi! That will be very odd.

Wednesday July 4, 2007 – 10:40pm (BST)

Vague? I wish I had so «vague» plans. I live for the next moment righ now. The only thing I know for sure is that I am in Athens and a friend is driving me and Sideraki down to Pireas to take the boat to Ikaria the day after tomorrow. Ah, and that I will find a clean house there too, thanks to Nana. The future will tell for the rest.

Friday July 6, 2007 – 03:49am (PDT)

Ah, Eleni. That is fantastic news. It is better to live for the next moment than be vague….I am so glad you are taking your son Sideraki to Ikaria. It is the best thing for you both, you will be going home. Sto Kalo.

Friday July 6, 2007 – 11:25pm (BST)

Καλό ταξίδι! 🙂

Saturday July 7, 2007 – 08:35pm (EEST)