Lindos

We decided to brave the heat on a trip to Lindos, a place we had heard much about, opting to take the bus in as being higher up you can see much more. This was quite an experience, zig-zagging up narrow mountain roads with hairpin bends where it often seemed certain the bus would hit a wall or outcrop of rock. But the driver had driven this route many times and knew how to navigate obstacles.

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Pefkos – never heard of it!

Pefkos was something of a revelation, though I’m not sure exactly what I expected.

The Stella Hotel stay was a last-minute deal too good not to take advantage of. Self-catering, so that gave me a few qualms in case we were miles from a supermarket and restaurants. I needn’t have worried, but perhaps the fact I did suggests Pefkos doesn’t sell itself to its advantage.

Read more about Pefkos at http://jingsandthings.wordpress.com

Island Voices Galore

One of the projects that’s kept me busy recently, along with finishing the first draft of my next novel, is the publication by Twinlaw Publishing (www.twinlawpublishing.co.uk) of a new book – not mine, but one by Janice Ross. Janice has been a busy lady, juggling the demands of publication with putting together her doctoral thesis on the art of blethering.

Read more at http://jingsandthings.wordpress.com

 

On the eleventh day of April

What is so special about the eleventh day of April? A hint. It’s not the eleventh of April this year I’m referring to.

It’s the eleventh day of April 1868. Ring any bells? Probably not — unless you live in Japan. For on the eleventh of April 1868 the era of the Tokugawa Shogunate was brought to a close with the restoration of the Emperor Meiji.

Now, before you hit the delete button and move on to another email, consider this.

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You won’t be sorry

If the words ‘afternoon tea’ conjure up soggy white bread egg or cucumber sandwiches and cup cakes (which we used to call fairy cakes) with lurid icing, sprinkles and silver balls that chip your teeth, then think again. To be honest this is more or less what I thought I’d be in for. So we went for our afternoon tea yesterday with little idea of what to expect. Luckily, though, we had the sense to forego lunch beforehand.

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February 14th

February 14th. St Valentine’s Day. But who was St Valentine and why do we celebrate it as a lovers’ day with red hearts, roses and sloppy cards?

St Valentine was a Catholic saint, or according to some sources one of two or three, all martyred, one of whom is said to have sent a letter to his loved one (his jailor’s daughter) from his Roman prison and signed it from your Valentine.

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Exhilarating

The boat was a Turkish gulet, twenty-three metres in length, called Bonita da Madeira, made from rich coloured woods and stainless steel, with masts that soared towards the sky. At the stern, we lounged on blue plastic covered mattresses formed into a relaxing seat. The relaxing aspect was further enhanced by a glass of Madeira wine – such a welcoming gesture as well as a great promotional tool for both boat trip and wine.

Closing down (a bit like 2015)

It was a great deal – the reason we went to Rhodes for two weeks rather than one as the cost was little more. We didn’t question why, vaguely thinking it was due to the lateness of the season, a quieter interlude before ramping up again for Christmas.

During the first week we merely enjoyed being there. But then we began to hear stories from staff of the hotel closing down at the end of the month. End of the summer season they said. They talked of longed-for holidays after working hard all through the summer. After that they would work on the land, pick olives, see what else became available, spin their money out and hope they could find another job to see them through to May when the hotel opened again.

Read more on my blog at http://jingsndthings.wordpress.com

It’s getting near

The decorations are up, cards sent, presents bought and wrapped. Now only a few days more to go before the man in red drops down your chimney.

That old story always gives me a mixed feeling of giggle and shiver down the spine, for when I was at the tender age of believing the Santa thing, I felt deeply uneasy, okay afraid, that some stranger would come into my home while I slept.

Read more at It’s getting near

Symi symphony

‘Oooh! Hope the crossing’s not rough when you go,’ said a member of the reception staff. ‘My mother goes often and she always worries about the sea being rough. If you’re worried take sea sickness pills,’ he advised.

Husband and I dismissed his worries. Even on the days when the sea looked slightly choppy it was nothing we hadn’t experience hundreds and more times in Scotland. Besides we had sailed across the North Sea on many occasions, even during storms, so we though we could manage a two hour sail to the island of Symi, north west of Rhodes.

Read more about the wonderful island of Symi at Symi symphony