Travel Journal

Patience is a virtue

(Saturday 28 February 2015) by Mariken
Making bannocks
Making bannocks
We are on Kalymnos for a month now and unfortunately, up until now it has not been an unqualified success. True, the rocks still look lovely, from a distance I might add, as it has been either too windy or too wet to go climbing. Of course, February is never the best month for climbing, as it is generally either too cold or too wet no matter where you are (except maybe if you go to the Southern hemisphere), but we had many lovely climbing days here in February last year, so we arrived with high hopes. Alas, clearly results from the past are no guarantee for future success.

Fortunately, we found a very nice studio, cheap, with good kitchen facilities, a hot shower every morning, a heater, a very tempting view on Telendos and the Grande Grotta and a lovely landlady.

Oat cakes
Oat cakes
That landlady deserves a blogpost on its own. Katina, 69 but looks like 85 if it wasn't for the crudely dyed hair, has spent six years in Australia but apparently decided that life in Greece had more to offer (beats me why) and made her way back to Kalymnos where she now enjoys her well-deserved pension and rents out studios. She must have spent those six Australian years in a Greek community, because her English is broken at best. That doesn't stop her from chattering my ears off, whenever she is here, which is about every four days. She bangs on the front door, loud enough to wake the dead, let alone two sleepy Dutchies who generally do not wake at dawn, and then marches in, armed with toilet paper, enough towels to mop up the Aegean sea and biscuits, because, as I am young and therefore 'skinny' (I failed to see the connection, but then, I am clearly older than she anticipated, so maybe this is the first sign of Alzheimer, I don't know), I need fattening up. And Jacco as well, since he is only a 'little boy'. She then proceeds to complain about her husband, who is lazy and a 'bloody bastard' to boot, 'bloody bastard' being about the only thing she says that sounds like real English, albeit delivered with an Australian accent. Even though the good man has been working his ass off for the past few days, painting all the other studios - while she was either sitting downstairs, doing nothing or standing next to him, criticizing him and his work - he is a good-for-nothing lazy man, who drinks too much coffee and is too relaxed in his view on life, never worries about anything. Personally I think that attitude is why he has survived so far. But at least he is a Greek, which is a lot better than Australian men, who are good for doing business with, but who talk too much (?) to be good spouses. And on top of that they are not orthodox. Just so you know. With a dismissive flap of the hand Spanish men were discarded as spouse material as well, but Dutch men are good (duh) and for some inexplicable reason, so are Slovaks. If there is anyone out there still looking for a husband, you now know what to look for. Other than that she doesn't like tourists from Athens, because they spit watermelon pits around and Kalymnos is in a very sorry state because it does not have a McDonalds. Hooray for that, I would say, but apparently it is a great loss for the Kalymnian society.

So you see, even though we are not climbing, we are not bored either. At least not every four days. :-p And on the other three days I am reading or trying out new recipes even though we have by now enough biscuits to keep us fed until next year. Climbing is what we came for though, so we have decided to stay a few weeks longer on Kalymnos with high hopes regarding the weather. And if not, we'll try again in El Chorro in April. Plenty of options left. ;-)

  • fattening up by jac
  • Beter by Aafke
    • Beter x2 by Mariken
      • Foto's...? by Aafke
        • Beterschap by Mariken
  • Greek - Australian connections by Bibiche
    • Tourist office by Mariken
      • Jummie by Bibiche
  • Koekjes!! by Marike

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