Jun 2012

Greece: On the Eve of What Next?

The water pump is roaring on and on, blotting out all else. The water is pumped from a sterna which collects the copious winter rains but now it’s vibrating wildly and in the suspiciously hot smell I envisage a disastrous island conflagration known to have started right here.

I ring the pump expert. “Find the little box of electrics and hit it with a brick,” he says.

There is a brick suspiciously near the pump so I use it. The pump subsides; I can hear the cicadas again and the swallows again.


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Greece: a Rock and a Hard Place

Five days until the new elections here in Greece and I wake early. There are two things I get used to very fast when I return to Greece: the cocks crowing from 5.00am onwards – the cock on my elderly neighbours small-holding seems to be the sentinel bird for the whole valley – and the lighthouse; every couple of minutes its distinctive pattern of two long flashes and two short sweeps across my bedroom wall. On sleepless nights it’s something of a comfort. The constant rhythm of lighthouses and ports, fishing boats and ferry schedules is one of the constants of this nation.

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