Saturday, 12 September 2009

Back from sunshine to sunshine

We got back last night from two weeks in hot and sunny Greece - Zakynthos, to be more exact. Wonder of wonders, we've come back to a heatwave, and are still in the same t-shirts and shorts we were wearing while away - already cleaned and dried. It's going to take some severe culling and editing before I have some Greek photos to share, so here are a couple from the mixed wildflower seeds that came into bloom while we were away. Alas, I have to say that the tomatoes are scarcely any redder than in the photo in my previous post, but I believe it's been fairly wet and grey while we were away.



There's a gorgeous red poppy too, but it's past its best - luckily there still seem to be some more buds on the same stem. I love blue cornflowers and red poppies - they remind me of wheat fields in France. I think we must use more weedkiller here, I've never seen them the same way in Irish wheat fields.
I guess I'll add one photo from Zakynthos town. We went into a little haberdashery shop and bought some bright sunflower oilcloth to brighten up the kitchen table. It was an old little shop. Well, as old as anything in the town is. After the 1953 earthquake when between 60 and 70% of the building on the island were destroyed, only four buildings were left standing in Zakynthos town. So this little shop had only been there since 1953, but it can't have looked a whole lot different back then. I am sure the metre stick we used to measure the oilcloth was that old!
I could have taken a dozen pictures of all those little boxes of buttons. The owner insisted that I get behind the counter so that C could take a picture of the two of us, and then I got a kiss on each cheek. We don't have a lot of Greek, and he didn't have a lot of English, but as always C singing to himself got a response, and he told us that he used to sing too. Up in the mountains in a little taverna we met another guy with little English, but again we communicated a bit; after I pointed out his bouzouki case to C, he came over and got it out, and played a bit for us. He just plays for pleasure with the family - his wife plays piano and one of his kids plays alto sax. The Greeks obviously use the same solfege system for their music as the French do, because that was how he explained the tuning to us. It's certainly much more universal than C, D, E, F, and so much more useful, I can't understand why we don't use it much here.

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