Thursday, September 27, 2007

Yiasou!

Hello (or possibly goodbye - it appears to be the same word).

If Husband said it once, he said it twice during the last week: it's all Greek to me.

So, back from Crete and a relaxing week's holiday. But, oh, I do love my own bed. Someone sang, 'It's awful nice to go travelling but it's oh so nice to come home.' Or something like that. My sentiments exactly.

Not that we didn't have a lovely time: we did. Weather was half and half. The first two days I was melting. How on earth do you cope for days at a time with weather like that, Welshcakes? We survived by doing lots of sea swimming or, in my case, sea splashing. I must be the only person in the world who can swim on the spot.

Then we had a few cloudy days during which time we hired a car and visited a few sites/sights. Day 1 we went east to Knossos, the palace of the kings of Crete during the Minoan civilisation, which lasted from 2600-1100 B.C. The palace at Knossos was excavated by Englishman, Arthur Evans, at the beginning of the 20th century. He has been criticised for his reconstruction that involves a lot of concrete and imagination, but he is still honoured for his work on the huge palace excavation.

It did seem just a little like Disneyland: it was immaculately tidy. I expected Hercules to pop out from behind a pillar at any point, maybe accompanied by Minnie Mouse. That aside - and the ridiculous prices the guides wanted to charge - it really is a very impressive place. Here are some old ruins.

Day 2, we decided to head south - we were staying about halfway along the top of the island - and armed with the map and me as navigator we set off for the mountains. We ended up in the north-east. I blame Greek road signs - or lack of - and not my lack of map-reading skills. I admit I occasionally get distracted if I see a cute cat (more of that later) and lose my place, but the problem was far deeper than that, based as it was on Crete's poor infrastructure. So there.
Anyway we ended up at Chania, the old capital of Crete, on a very windy and wild day. It seemed to us to be a very badly designed harbour with an entrance that looked far too perilous to brave. The old town itself is largely Venetian and very lovely.

Day 3 we finally made it to the south of the island by following the only road we hadn't tried the previous day. We ended up at Matala Gorge (or George as it said on the wall) where Bob Dylan, amongst others, had lived in a cave in the sixties. Allegedly.

Ah, yes, and those cats. The hotel had a resident family of mum, dad (a ginger tom who incidentally had the largest testicles I have ever seen on a cat), and two young kitties. Here mum does what mums the world over do: gives her offspring a quick lick and brush-up as she's passing.

Lots more photos to come in the slide-show I'm preparing. I've downloaded Zorba's Dance to accompany the piccies but do you think I can work out where the puta has downloaded it to?

12 comments:

jmb said...

Welcome back Liz and thanks for the little tour. I've never been to Crete so I am looking forward to the slide show with music when you find it!
regards
jmb

Joy Des Jardins said...

Wow...what a great time. You look so cute in that picture Liz. Nice pictures...love the little kittens. Welcome back...

Stu said...

Be neat to see how your trip compares to ours.

There's a welcome in the hillsides///// blog comments ;-)

Eurodog said...

First visit to your blog. I will return.
I love Harvey!!! So cuddly.

chux said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
chux said...

good to have you back!

Sounds like a fabulous trip too. My only experience of Greece was Rhodes, which was nice, my betting is that Crete is even better. A lot of history over there. Non less than where the Apostle John wrote the Revelation! At least I remember some of the stuff I get told - he he.

Did you get a photo of the Ginger Tom with the huge knackers?? I'm intreagued now and want to see for myself!

Nice to read about your time, glad to see you're back now though!

Shirl said...

Hi Liz! Lovely to have you back and share your photos - look forward to the slide show later. Know what you mean about being home again - it's a good reason to go away.

Liz said...

JMB, it could be some wait! Or I might abandon my plan to have Zorba in the background.

Thank you, Joy. They were adorable kittens.

Stu, I imagine yours was more worthy!

Eurodog, thank you. I'll come over to yours later.

Chux, thank you too. I didn't know that about John's Revelation! I do have a photo of the tom cat but not from the back end I'm afraid!

Shirl, thank you too! I think I'm still there: I'm wearing t-shirt and shorts and freezing to death! Must go and change.

Further on up the road said...

looks lovely. Minoans - now I know very little about them other than very sophisticated for the time. Isn't there a belief they were wiped out in a tidal wave after an earthquake or something possibly leading to the Atlantis legend. Or am I totally up the wrong gum tree?

chux said...

doh!!!
I had a panic last night about this!! I suddenly remembered that it was Patmos not Crete where the Revelation was written. Having a blond moment or something? (cant use that excuse actually)

Thank you for being polite and not saying I was a dopey donut, although you must have been thinking it.

Glad you had a good holiday anyway!

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Lovely photos and glad you had such a great time. Adorable cats! Re coping with the heat, after it's over you wonder how you did and then you forget - until next summer.

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