Ermioni Day Three

11 October

It was still cool when we woke this morning, but the temps warmed as the sun came up and, most importantly, the sky was blue with only white fluffy clouds. Because of the comfortable weather, we decided to take a walk up the hill across the harbor on which there’s a church and a windmill that we could see from the studio. It was a long but pleasant walk uphill, with numerous stops to admire the views of Ermioni and beyond.

Our first long stop was by the church that we had admired from afar. Churches in Greece seem to generally occupy prime real estate — on hillsides, along the sea, and usually on the highest points. There are, of course, many that appear to be “neighborhood” churches — small buildings that could not possibly hold more than a dozen or so people. Mainly these are Greek Orthodox, though we did observe a few Roman Catholic ones.

Having been brought up as a Roman Catholic and learning of the “great schism” of the 6th century when the church split into two factions — Roman and Orthodox — I was fascinated to check these out. As mentioned earlier, we visited and/or viewed several 11th and 12th century Byzantine Orthodox structures; also our visit to the nunnery in Syros had been interesting. I was fascinated with their icons and hadn’t realized until then that they appear to be the equivalent of the Roman Catholic church’s statues except that some are paintings and others are two-dimensional wall hangings (as opposed to three-dimensional statues). Even more fascinating to me was that many of them were made of precious metals, mostly silver, and all had similar if not identidal photographic faces inserted into them.

After we viewing and taking lots of pictures of the church (that we unfortunately could not get into but could see through the windows), we proceeded up the hill to visit the windmill.

(These are not modern windmills that are intended to harvest wind power, but rather intended to mill wheat from the 16th century when they were built by Venetians, much like the water-driven waterwheels on our East Coast and in Canada. Their use gradually declined until they ceased production in the early 20th century. The windmills have a round shape, white color, and a pointed roof. The wheels have “sails” ttached that were opened to catch the wind and put them in motion.)

When we got there, we discovered the windmill was closed (for the season?). It apparently had been restored a cafe-bar, based on the inside furnishings. The outside tables were still set up, however, so we sat there for a while just enjoying the view and the ambience. (Later that evening from our studio we saw that it was lit up, and wondered if it was open or if the lighting was for security — must check that out on our next trip.)

After we walked back down the hill, it was time for a late lunch. We headed back to Taverna Tzieris because we really enjoyed being there. Admittedly also for the internet access.

It was mid-afternoon, and shortly after we were served he was closing down for the siesta time; however, he insisted that we stay as long as we liked — another example of the outstanding customer service and trust that exists here. From what we’ve been told, crime is almost non-existent in this part of the world — how refreshing is that!

We headed back after we had our internet fix, walking along the sea and then through the forest. As we walked along the sea side of the forest, we checked out stone beach locations, making note of where we hoped to swim in the next day or two, weather permitting.

Because we’d had such a large, late lunch we decided to stay and enjoy some leftovers that evening. After watching a lovely, if not memorable, sunset, we called it a day–looking forward to our ferry trip to the island of Hydra the next day.

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