DAY 30…..Greece the First Time
Posted on June 26, 2012 by Key West Lou
An interesting experience this morning.
I was sitting on the terrace reading. It was very early. The sun had just risen.
I assumed the rest of Amorgos was still sleeping. It was. Except for one elderly Greek woman.
She came walking by. Wrinkled face. White hair. Tanned. Dressed in black dress and stockings.
She stopped and talked with me. She spoke smilingly and occasionally excitedly. In Greek, of course.
I sat there smiling at her. Nodding my head in agreement on occasion.
I never spoke a word. Nor did I understand the Greek she was throwing at me.
At the end of whatever she was telling me, she gave me a big smile and walked away.
Notice how well I speak Greek!
Yesterday, I walked. Once more to the other side of the bay. About 2 miles. My gait and wind are much better. I was moving along.
I lunched at an outdoor cafe overlooking the harbor. A spectacular view. All views are spectacular here in the Greek isles.
I ate at Demetrius’ again last night. Why not. The food is outstanding.
Demetrius’ place is nothing appearance wise. An old old small building with a beat up awning outside. Maybe a dozen small tables. Tables, chairs and silverware not matching.
The place is packed every evening by 9.
Last night, I had ceci peas. Soft. Covered in a tomato/oil sauce. With De Vito type bread on the side to clean the plate.
My entre was a chunk of lamb and boiled potatoes covered in a similar sauce as the ceci peas. I was told the lamb was local. I suspect the poor animal had been killed within 24 hours of it showing up on the plate before me.
The lamb melted in my mouth.
I showed up for dinner at 9. Finished at 11. The Greeks eat slowly.
Then to bed.
Tonight is my last in Amorgos. I will have been here a week. I leave tomorrow for 2 days in Athens. I am returning to Athens to do some things I did not when last I was there 3 weeks ago.
I shall miss Amorgos.
Permit me to share some random observations with you about this island.
I suggested this past week that Amorgos probably had 2,000 residents. I was close. 1,859. On an island more than 50 miles long.
Amorgos is as it was 200 years ago. Perhaps even before.
The houses are concrete. All white. Each more than 200 years old. High ceilings. Irregular walls.
The people are 80 to 100 years ago. Throwbacks from another time. Simple people. Good people.
There are few cars on Amorgos. Two means of transportation exist. Your feet and three wheeled bicycles. Three wheelers all over the place with big baskets on the back.
The men generally 50 plus. Many 70 plus. Paunchy. White haired. Dress in black. The women the same. For whatever reason, the women’s faces are especially wrinkled.
The reason both sexes dress in black is that it supposedly is cooler than wearing a lighter color.
Honesty prevails! Eleni and I discovered each other when first I arrived. I had one big bag. She insisted on rolling it along. Not far. She stopped in front of a building. Note we are standing on the harbor front. Busiest place on the island. She told me to follow her. But she left my bag alone. What about my bag? Don’t worry, she said. No one will steal it.
Her husband drives a three wheel bike. He parks it outside at night on the concrete walkway in front of his building. A public thoroughfare. No lock. Any one could ride it away. No one does.
My apartment sits on the bay of Amorgos. I see the boats come in and go out. Not that many. There are no big boats per se. Some evenings, 2-3 big sailboats. People put in for the night. Otherwise, the boats moored or otherwise tied up in the water are small.
The predominant vessel is a row boat. Yes, these fisherman go out into the sea to catch their ware in row boats. If you think about it, it is not so strange. In Hemingway’s Old Man and the Sea, the fisherman was out on the ocean in a row boat the whole story.
There are some ancient type boats, also. A couple of feet longer than a row boat. A rudder in the back.
The boats are evidence of my representation that Amorgos is significantly behind the times.
Few tourists. The island is off the beaten track. Only two ferry boats a week. I think Amorgos is absolutely fantastic! And cheap! Everything costs nothing. A person could easily live here on a Social Security check. And still have money left over!
The tourists are from all over the world. They all come for the same reasons. Peace, solitude and the cheap cost.
The locals are a happy group. Difficult to know at first. They are wary of strangers. But in less than a week, I became a welcomed guest on their island.
There are young people. However, not that many. The proof of the pudding. There is only one disco on the island. The younger people probably leave Amorgos for bigger and better things when they come of age. I hope some of them return in due course. Everything they will be looking for in later life is already here.
Internet and wi fi service comes and goes. Every restaurant and hotel claims they have it. Impossible to find! You become adjusted. Take it in stride. Eventually it returns.
Fresh fruit a delight! An example is a gift Eleni’s husband gave me. He has a garden next to my building. It runs three stories up a little hill. Everything runs upward on Amorgos. He has an apricot tree. One day, he brought me a bowl full of apricots. They were small and ripe. Delicious. Made my mouth water.
As else where in Greece, clothes lines everywhere. Front porches, sides of buildings, where ever. Even I have a clothesline. At the far end of my terrace. For my sole use. I have used it.
I leave tomorrow at 6 in the morning. I have no choice. The two boats a week in and out both leave at 6. It is a 9 hour trip to Athens. Going to be fun. Not really. However, I am going business class and am told it will make the trip considerably easier.
Due to the time constraints tomorrow, I may not be able to do the blog. We shall see.
I have experienced four Greek places this trip. A brief evaluation is in order.
Athens I liked. It is a big city like New York. Excitement everywhere. The reason I am returning for two days more.
The best viewwise was Santorini. Spectacular. I sat with God. The food was not that good, however. Santorini is in transit. It is going from a small unknown island to a major tourist attraction. It is closer to being a major tourist attraction.
Mykonos I did not like at all. It is a tourist trap. It sells yesterday to people who want that life style. I have no desire to return to Mykonos.
Overall, Amorgos is the winner. The view is good. Plus the island has a great package otherwise. Quiet. Solitude. Good food. Nice people. The opportunity to travel at your own pace.
That’s it. The next time you hear from me will be from Athens.
Enjoy your day!
An extremely sad day yesterday. Tiger Woods in an automobile accident in California. One car accident. Tiger driving. No other person injured.
From the looks of the car, Tiger is lucky to be alive. The whole front end appears to have been pushed up to the front portion of the body of the car.
Tiger sustained “significant orthopedic injuries to his right lower extremity….. “open fractures.” A rod placed in his tibia, screws and pins in his foot while he was undergoing “emergency surgery.”
He was responsive last night and this morning.
Enough for the technical aspects.
I was blown away. Spent a considerable portion of the day listening to the news reports and shedding a tear on occasion A few times more than a tear.
Tiger has had his ups and downs in life. Whatever his failings, he overcame them. His career has had its up and downs. He came back. Went through multiple surgeries, especially to his back.
Tiger represents America. He is the best part of America. Respected by most. An icon in his lifetime.
I suspect his career is over. He is in his early 40s. Golfers will tell you the legs are the most important part of the body when playing golf. He will recover. Fully in all likelihood. However time to get off the achievement ladder and begin smelling the roses all of the time.
He has succeeded professionally and personally. A new life awaits him.
When I was not glued to the TV watching Tiger, I was at the Senate Committee hearing re January 6.
Most of the Republican members an absolute disgrace. Still following Trump. Their Lord and Master. Their Pied Piper.
They were a shame. The Republicans tried to whitewash the day. Continued to drive in the theory that the 6th was a coordinated attack. Planned of course by the Democrats.
Senator Johnson continues to be one who follows Trump’s dictates.
The Federalist Society in a recent Federalist article raised unproven claims. Johnson spent all his time, except for one 5 minute interval, reading word for word from the report. Like The Federalist was the Bible.
The article referred to the Democratic terrorists as “provocateurs.” Claimed they were “fake protesters.”
In short, the terrorists were planned demonstrators who in reality were Democrats.
Senator Hawly made me sick. He is the man who advised the nation on January 5 that he was with the demonstrators. Encouraged them as Trump would to do their thing. He is also the Senator who on January 6 was filmed walking up the Capitol steps with the demonstrators behind him. He stopped and turned around facing them. With a glowing smile, he gave them a thump up.
He was part of the whitewashing team yesterday.
Cruz continues to dig a whole for himself. Some things just cannot be explained away. A trip to Cancun’s Ritz-Carlton because his wife said their home was freezing. Leaving his constituents at home freezing.
He added to the fire yesterday. The fire that is slowly but surely engulfing him. He said his wife Heidi was “pissed” because apparently one of their neighbors had advised the media they wee off to Cancun.
Heidi tweeted her neighbors telling them to join the Cruzs on the trip to Cancun. None accepted. However one did provide the media with a copy of the tweet.
Cruz referred to the yet unknown neighbor as an “a-hole.” He should have spelled it out. Asshole!
It was reported yesterday that a Jared Kushner property was in foreclosure. The technical owner is Kushner and Cos. of which Jared is a part.
Wells Fargo is foreclosing on them.
The building is located at 229 West 43 Street. Formerly the home of the New York Times. The property was appraised for $470 million in 2016. Some big time tenants moved out. The property was reappraised in 2019 for $92.5 million. The Kushners were unable to make interest payments and such resulted in the foreclosure action.
I thought I understood big money. This is beyond me. Jared going into foreclosure for millions of dollars. At the same time, it has been reported in the past 2 months that he and Ivanka purchased an empty lot in Billionaire Bunker near Miami for $31 million. While waiting for the home to be constructed, Jared and family are renting in one of the most expensive condominium buildings in Miami. Some thing like $37,000 or $47,000 a month. Unfurnished. On top of which, it recently was announced that Jared and Ivanka had jointly earned $120,000 in 2020.
The world of high finance is sometimes difficult to grasp.
The vaccine still a problem as regards distribution. Biden’s people announced that the age required for the shots was being dropped this friday to 55. I am 85 and still waiting! Additionally, 240 million doses will be available in March.
All sounds good. I believe Biden when he says 240 million doses will be available. My problem is why am I not getting my shot. I qualified when the cut off was 85. When lowered to 75 and 65 continued tobe qualified. Now going to 55.
The Citizens’ Voice had an interesting comment this morning re getting the vaccine shot: “Under 65? No problem. A snowbird with a home, no problem. A permanent Florida resident older than 65 with health issues, get in line and wait. The vaccine system is really rigged. And all the while doses for health care workers may or may not be used, since they can have it, but don’t have to.”
Bring back May Johnson!
In the meantime, it appears William Hackley has made a step up in life. His mornings up to this past week had him taking a “bath.”
Now he refers to his morning cleansing as a “shower bath.”
It appears Hackley has gone 1897 Key West modern. He now has a shower!
My Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou blog talk radio show last night. With all humility, I must advise I think it was one of the best I have done. If you missed it, the show is archived and will be easy to find.
Enjoy your day!
Lou, there are reason you are not getting your Covid Vaccine. One of those is because you live in Florida, another is DeSantis is your Governor and he controls woo gets the vaccine and who doesn’t.
The Sarasota Herald Tribune has caught DeSantis red handed, asking local Manatee county for a list of important local Republicans and Wealthy Republican voters, then allocated 3,000 doses to them the same week he canceled 5,000 doses for the general public.
You live in what is basically a mobbed up state.
Lou, I am an ordinary Florida citizen without any political connections or privilege. I have received both COVID vaccinations because I was aggressive in trying to sign up for every possible vaccination site within 100 miles. It’s not enough to get your name on just one list and then sit and wait. I ended up getting my shots in Orlando, 50 miles away.
Some blame DeSantis and politics for Florida’s uneven distribution of vaccine. Maybe. Maybe not. But regardless of political conspiracies I am proof that the vaccine can be obtained if you go after it.
So after you got your shot did you contact all of the other places that you signed up on and tell them to take you off their lists?
I wonder how that guy in Orlando, 50 miles away from you, feels about you having come all that way from where you live and took the last remaining available vaccine he was hoping to get where he lives?
Hunger games indeed, all about YOU isn’t it?
Not any different than the Orlando area folks who are able to get an appointment for vaccines at our fairgrounds or Publix. Good for them. If you really want the vaccinations now while supplies are spotty, then go to where the vaccine is. Don’t wait months for it to come to you. Lots of people will drive 50 miles for a BBQ dinner without worrying that they might get someone else’s last sparerib.
Wiggle, Wiggle, Wiggle – piggy
Lou, I am an ordinary New York citizen without any political connections or privileges either. I am 75 years old and just yesterday got my first shot. I didn’t do anything, apart from sign up with county (Erie) for the shot about a month ago. Last week I got a text that shots were available and made the appointment. It was simple and straightfoward.
My older sister lives in Florida (Volusia Co.) and like you, hasn’t heard from anybody. I don’t think she’s been very aggressive trying to get it, but then why should she have to be? Besides, she doesn’t have a car, so is dependent on the kindness of others. Seems to me that if you live in Florida, it’s like the Hunger Games if you want to survive.
It’s always popular to pick on Florida. But the truth is demand for the vaccine far outstrips supply in most states across the country. As a result, President Biden has declared a National Emergency in order to ramp up supply and improve distribution. Biden says 300 million doses will be available nationally by the end of July.
Florida is a step above other states, when it comes to corruption and incompetence with this Covid thing and many more issues.
You are just in denial and totally blind on this and accusing others doesn’t change anything. Especially your credibility and apparent decency.
Clarify please. What did I say about the vaccine shortage and the National Emergency that is not true? And who did I accuse? And of what? And why are you so angry?
Why are you changing the subject, Who said you said anything about the vaccine shortage was not true and who said you said that shortage wasn’t a National Emergency?
And why are you asking for any clarifications when no one is contradicting either of those issues to begin with?
Do you have comprehension issues or are you just trying to create a different issue to change the subject?
Are you trying to pretend you are a victim of something that no one is accusing you of?
People might be angry because they think you are bragging about getting your vaccine in a way that seems unfair to them, just as they wrote. Why are you trying to turn this into an attack on you lying about something when that was never an issue? What is the matter with YOU>
I think you meant to post your comment to “1776”, not to me. I usually post as anon, and my comment was about the nationwide vaccine shortage and the “national emergency” declaration to fix it.
and apparently evasive issue attempts too!
“The Republicans tried to whitewash the day.”
Well, it is their favorite color.
“The world of high finance is sometimes difficult to grasp.”
More to the point it is difficult to swallow. Failure seems to have trickled down from father in law and he too lived a charmed life.
“Cruz referred to the yet unknown neighbor as an “a-hole.”
Perhaps Ted shouldn’t have talked smack about other elected officials who beat feet during a crisis. Karma?
President Biden has a dream of bringing this country together in the devastating wake of Donnie the Divider. By the comments being pazzed around by Cult du Trump. that seems unlikely. They are digging in and continue to act unpatriotically.
We may have to accept it may not end well and President Biden should too.
Couldn’t agree more. President Biden has shown great leadership. Especially recently when he reopened immigrant detention centers. You know,.. Throwing kids in cages. In fact. He just reopened the detention center near Florida City. The same on Kamala Harris protested at. Hmmm?
It’s far more complicated than that ‘Hmmm” but you probably know that!
Maybe you should go back to hate school and learn to understand things before you try your hand at spinning things!
Tossing brown children in cages is complicated? Hmmm?
Yes it is, and you suggesting it is otherwise is goulish! We will always be remembered, just like Nazi Germany for what Trump did.
You are sick
Hmmm? I guess that explains why it’s “complicated”. Tell it to the mom who had her baby torn from her arms and caged.
Yes all those moms for the past 4 years. History is not EVER going to forgive Trump and his Nazi advisers. This will haunt his legacy probably more than ANYTHING else. Glad you finally agree with this.
How is it you could NOT bring yourself to not condeming this until NOW?
So you agree. What Biden is doing is monstrous.
Didn’t say that, I said that was what TRUMP did for the past 4 years and you didn’t seem to mind that at all. Biden has been in power just a couple of weeks and you seem to think the world is coming to an end. Same old Bull Sh*t with you people. Let’s see what becomes of this mess and remember that the problem is not Biden, but what Trump did. A MONSTER that man and something that apparently didn’t bother you at all when he did it.+
I don’t think we need to debate anything to do with ANYONE who defended trump and his ‘for profit’ concentration camp policies during his four years in office and who NOW wants to criticize Biden’s efforts to fix that, especially after Biden’s only first few weeks in office.
People like that should shut the fuk up and call back into their sewers and repent for the mess we are all in.
Your Stories about Greece reminded of that great old movie “Zorba the Greek”.
I cringe when I hear or read the word “patriot” since Trump corrupted the term.
Trump was not the person who first corrupted that term, Republicans, and those who think like them, have been hiding behind that for years. Trump just made it worse by humping the flag. Disgusting!
Don’t forget, Hitler was in jail for treason, worked on Mein Kampf, and got out to go on to rule and wreck Germany and Europe. It is certainly possible for Trump to follow this path in this Country.
Except for the part about writing a book, of course.
Florida/DeSantis inept on the vaccine ? Hmm, we walked in to sign up and they took us on the spot.
“Concentration Camps ?”
Do you mean the same detention centers built by the Obama Biden admin ? They were fine because of who had them built. [ Obama Biden deported and separated far more families than Trump. Remember the deporter in chief]. Along comes Trump who uses the same buildings and now they are called concentration camps. Biden now again uses the same buildings to house even more people and he gets praised for it.
The liberal progressive mind never ceases to amaze.