Friday, November 21, 2008


wow!! our lemon tree is multi-tasking again!  it has ripening juicy lemons... and has sweet blossoms opening up and creating that lovely aroma!  bravo indeed!

Monday, November 17, 2008


 well.... it's over!  talking about the honeymoon with our sweet house in Crete.  we had already made the decision that we would end the rental on the house because of the economic situation at home   and needing to get our house sold and prob. building a new one ... however, when there was a brief rain period a few days ago, resulting in rivulets coming thru the bathroom window onto the floor in quite significant puddles, then last night and today heavier rains with water coming in under the front door and thru the wood stove, and finally figuring out that there's probably a big black mold problem, which is probably why i've been wheezing lately.... well, the honeymoon is over.  oh, yeah... did i mention that slugs come into the house in the bathroom and in the kitchen, and that the limit was finding a slug on the toilet seat?  oh, yeah... did i mention that we've found scorpions in the house?  I'm really not a sissy and can put up with a lot without complaining.... however, slug on toilet seat is one thing up with which i will not put!!!  and this whole situation is sad, because i love so much about the house.... including the porch with lots of room for sittin' around, the abundance of roses, grape arbors, lemon tree, the location ... and so much more!  if i only had lots of $$, i'd love to do a lot of work on this house... sigh...

and next sunday is our 30th wedding anniversary, we're having a party at our house to celebrate and at this point i have no idea how many people will be there as we keep on inviting more and more and more people, and the Cretan way is that if you are going to a party, you bring along some of your friends.  could be a very interesting adventure!!!!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

we woke to rain today, but by the time we'd been up for an hour (well, ok... we didn't get up til almost 11).  but, anyway, we had to do some serious shopping at the.. um.. supermarket.. out of essentials like toilet paper, tomatoes, tonic, vodka.... oh, yeah and milk.  So, we made a walk the long way to the store and here are some of the sights.... a huge luscious palm tree, bougainvilla in contrast to a white stone wall and aged door.  

and the best.. a 3-wheel vehicle which was first made around WW2 here in Crete and is no longer being made.  it's still used by local farmers in their work and make the most god-awful noise imaginable... especially when laboring up hills.  i believe it is called mechani.  and i'd love to have one!!

and then there was friday... Kristy and her friend from school,  Mahar, came for a visit.  We met her the first year we came to Vamos and were at the Dourakis winery at the same time.  She is a friend of a woman from Portland that Jim used to work with.  Anyway... she has been in Crete for 2 years now working on her degree in agronomy.  We gave her the grand tour of Vamos, then went to Bloumosif for dinner, followed by a stop by Liakoto for the view.  Well, not surprisingly, since there was only one other person there at the time, plus the bartender, we lingered and were convinced to have just one raki.  Well... there really is no such thing as "one raki"... so after several hours (and a few raki) we left.  and by the way, Mahar had just one raki and was the designated driver.   luckily, it is a short stagger from there to our house.  did i mention that we will need some serious detox-ing when we get home?  this culture is quite heavy on eating and drinking and i guess we are fitting in quite well.  oh, yeah... back to Liakoto tonight for the live music.

yesterday we went with Artemi and Xanathippi to see an area up in the hills east of here which is abundant with springs... and i mean lots and lots of water just pouring up out of the ground all over the place.  it is evidently a very popular tourist destination in the spring and summer months.  then we found a wonderful restaurant/taverna at the bottom of a small gorge, nested among a bunch of trees and lush growth... including banana trees!  great food!  whenever we eat with these two, we let them order most of the meal and it's never been disappointing.   2 of the arches pictured here have a sheet of water spilling down inside the arch.. it's amazing looking!!

Also, in this area is a small village up in the hills which celebrates the village's "name day" soon after Easter each year with a sheep festival.... shearing, sheep milk and cheese for sale, and generally a raucous event in celebration of their patron saint (whose name i cannot remember right now)  I think the village is called AsiGonia, but i need to check the map.  wondering if it even appears on the map...  Anyway, if we are here for Easter next spring, i really really want to go to this event.

Driving on these roads up in the hills is an adventure and not for the weak-of-heart!  my understanding of "hair-pin curves" is quite clear now.  and i live on to see another adventure!

Sunday, November 09, 2008


and today's adventure was with the Brit ex-pat community in Vamos and surrounding area.  there is an amphitheater of sorts up on the hill in Vamos... and there is a "theater group" comprised of mostly these Brits.  they had their 6th annual theater fest today in which they performed an assortment of entertainment... which included some satirical drama loosely following the adventures of Odysseus, interspersed with  music--  electric guitar, Greek bousuki (sp??), beattles songs, Greek poetry, some original music and overall a very entertaining afternoon!!  oh, and the costumes were outstandingly perfectly appropriate!!

(Terry - it's actually now 7pm here and i've finished my ouzo, Greek salad and raki and am ready to stagger home to eat our left-over lamb chops and grilled chicken from last night's adventure).

....and on

one of the new waiters at Bloumosifi... it's Gianni, from Syria and really a sweet young man!!  (he's blushing now)... 

Friday, November 07, 2008

it is so damn difficult to arrange photos and text on my blog that it is making me flipping crazy!!
but this is kind of like a journal for me and i want to get as much text and photos on as possible.
maybe blogger does not work well with mac... i don't know!  anyway, i'll put all the photos up on my flickr account (link in rt. column) if you want to see 'em.  i haven't been able to figure out how to write it out in IPages then copy and paste here.  it WON"T paste here.  gonna take a deep breath now and quit for awhile.  more ouzo and maybe some food is in order here.
the raki maker at work.  and, for what it's worth... if there is a Public Health Department here, i just don't know where they are!!!  this wouldn't pass any inspection i can imagine.  i take comfort in the idea that this raki is so high in alcohol it is able to kill any pathogens in the vicinity!  hope springs eternal, eh?

Berend helping with carrying wood for the CRM.

the top photo is where we took the fermenting grapes to be distilled into raki, then a photo inside the "distillery".  the round dome shaped thing is the lid over the pot where the juice is poured, then that lid is sealed with some kind of doughy stuff and the fire stoked up.  the gourd ladle is actually used  for dipping excess juice out of the pot.  and this dude has a government permit to make raki by distillation for the public!  hhmmmmm!  The 3 guys are lifting the barrel into Toine's van by putting a large towel under it and the 3 of them lifting...  And when we got the barrel to the distillery, they ladled the juice out and the CRM (cranky raki maker) poured it into the pot.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

o frabjous day!!!

thanks to Lewis Carroll:  "And, has thou slain the Jabberwock?  Come to my arms, by beamish boy!  O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!  He chortled in his joy!"  and a joyous day it is... for everyone on the planet.  After we took over the sofa and tv at Elena and Toine's house, we spent the entire night watching the election returns on CNN.  Finally, at 6am 11/5 here, Barack Obama was declared the winner... we are all winners now!  We walked home about 9a.m. and slept for a few hours.  there's joy ... and hope in my heart!  

the phot0 and note above came from our friends Elena and Toine, in congratulations on our presidential election!  Barack Obama was the choice of everyone we've talked to in Europe!  they are happy, too!!

Saturday, November 01, 2008

the gauntlet

here's another case of when i started out making some entrelac before i had any idea what it would become!  i had some handspun from fiber i bought from Lori Lawson at BSG, plus a little bit of my own fiber thrown (well... spun in) and wanted to see how it would look knitted up in entrelac.  finished making them into gauntlet mitts while listening to David Sedaris on tape, then got Klio to model them for me.  cute, huh??

so there is actually fiber content today!!  bravo..