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Flowers of Pelion

When I think of flowers in Greece, I think of bougainvillea

  The Pelion has flowers galore – my all time favourites, petunias and geraniums

have been expanded with hydrangeas, the size of which I have never seen before.

Then there is the heady scent of the gardenias …..


Pansies I love ….

And this one I need to ask my Greek friends its name … maybe you know?

Flowers everywhere to warm your heart and soul 🙂


In search of a good coffee

Greek coffee
Frappe with ice cream and caramel

There’s no lack of coffee or cafe’s to try along Milina seafront. In fact there’s a really good choice with some dozen venues from which to choose. I’ve tried them all and I am still searching for a cup of coffee that is creamy and smooth.

But wait, I think this may be it – – –

– – – A frappe with a little sugaryes, yes, yes, it is yummy!



When broadband is not broad

Sitting on this peninsular in an area of Greece still largely unnoticed to anyone except the Greek people, I ponder on the limits of broadband here. It’s as if the broad in broadband has disappeared and the bandwidth has become as narrow as the peninsular itself.

I think back to my frustrations in trying to join a conference call last week. There were seven of us in total. Six in America and me in Pelion.
I had assumed that video might be a stretch and imagined being on air just long enough to smile and say hello, then switching to audio only. What I had not envisaged was being unable to see the others at all and the audio breaking up often, resulting in them never being able to hear me and me being unable to hear them for several minutes at a time. In the end, I’d sent a couple of texts when I couldn’t communicate in any other way.
Wow, was I frustrated.

And then I caught sight of myself in this ridiculous pose.
Like watching myself in an old black and white silent movie, my hand gestures and facial expressions had become more and more grandiose as my frustrations grew!

Oh how funny and absurd us human beings are in this technical world!!!

How silly I now feel. Yes it mattered to me to be in touch with my peers, a set of special women who had trained together and shared much. But there’d be other meetings in future.

Right now what’s most important is that here I am in this secret place in Greece where life is simple and rich in ways that many of us have forgotten. Here my decisions revolve around what time to have a swim, should I buy fish today as the boat comes in, and whether I have enough fresh fruit and vegetables or do I need a top up from the truck that passes by.
I thank God for giving me the chance to be here and experience life that is more down to earth and real.

I have become so relaxed after these few weeks that even writing a blog post now takes much longer.

It’s okay to slow down, I say.
I can feel each muscle relax and I breathe 🙂

Flies of Pelion

All the tavernas (restaurants) in Greece have their seating outside and in the Pelion region where we are, the seating is right on the water. Incredible sea views and the beauty is simply magical.

That magic, however, soon dissipates as the flies start to appear. First one, then two, then three. Where do they come from I wonder? Nowhere to be seen one minute and everywhere the next minute.

When the food appears their friends join them. Incessantly landing on you as you attempt to swat them away. No longer can you enjoy the view as your attention is drawn to keeping them away from your delicious meal.
I turn to Carole and say, “I feel like a horse in a field”.

Mind you this also happens on the beach, while sitting on the patio outside ones accommodation, or just standing for too long taking in the sunset.
Is it just me that finds this so annoying?
I look around and no one else is swatting at flies. Am I the only person with flies around them?

As an American, I wonder why don’t the Greeks utilize fly traps? I am left feeling perplexed and frustrated.

Favourite views, favourite patterns

Looking out from Milina, on the Pelion peninsular, the Pagasetic Gulf looks like a lake on many occasions. At such times it’s hard to believe it is part of the Mediterranean.

I love many of the views but there is one in particular that always catches my eye ….

from Milina looking south to the backbone of the mountains leading to Trikeri. Photo taken by Carole Brown May 2019.

Looking at the photos I had downloaded onto my laptop, I suddenly realised how similar this view looked to one I had loved and become very familiar with while living in Lake County California.

Here’s a photo of that view – not the best but the only one I can find while sitting here in Greece – so that you can see what I mean by similar scenes.

Looking along Clear Lake from Lakeport, California, with Mt Konocti in the distance. Photo taken by Carole Brown Sept 2016.

Does it look similar to you, too? I’d love to know what you think.
Remember, you can comment by clicking comment next to this blog post (or to any of the posts here).

I am still amazed by these two views when I consider how far apart they are from each other ….

When I thought about how I might be attracted to places because of shapes that attract me, I decided to call this post “Favourite places, favourite patterns”.

I hope it’s been fun for you to see these two views and to think about places and shapes, scenes and patterns that you find attractive and enjoyable to see.

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Seeing these two pictures together makes me think about a topic related to how our brains work that fascinates me. It’s called pattern recognition (pattern recognition describes a cognitive process that matches information from a stimulus with information retrieved from memory) –more about that in one of my other blogs!

What’s in a name?

I was looking at the bowl of oranges that our host had given us soon after arrival at our little bungalow in Milina. Admiring their beautiful colour I wondered ……

Is orange the only case where the word describes the colour and the fruit?

Did the name Orange first come to describe the fruit and then later the colour or did it start with the colour and then move to the fruit?

I guess I had better reach for the dictionary and find the derivation – wonder if it’s Greek?

Language barrier

There are 6,500 languages in the world today. Amazing when I think about it. How did they come to be I wonder? Making oneself understood in ones own language can be frustrating at times let alone trying to communicate in a different country.

So here we are in Milina Greece having a coffee in a small taverna when along comes the fish man in his truck calling out on his loud speaker his catch for the day. I run out to stop him and call out to Carole to come look. In his styrofoam ice chest are three different types of small fish. We selected the fish we wanted, which I believe he called Gavros, but I’m not sure. Now that I Googled “Gavros” I see they are a European anchovy, not something I would have chosen had I known at the time. We pointed and asked for six little fish by showing on our hands six fingers, but we were given handfuls instead. The whole time we are trying to say “no” “thank you, no more” in our startled voices and hand gestures. In the end the blue plastic bag he gave us contained a whopping 45 fish! An amazing deal at only €5, but where did we go wrong with our attempt at communicating? Language barriers are frustrating yet funny when traveling abroad.

By the way, the fish were delicious and provided us with four exceptional meals. For a fantastic Greek experience, there is nothing quite like buying Mediterranean fish from the fisherman that caught them that morning and cooking them for dinner that night. Greek food is fresh, local, and healthy. How it should be!

It’s all greek to me!

Recently I arrived in Greece and when siting down one evening to enjoy a glass of wine, which turned out to be a particularly delicious light dry white, I was amused as I tried to read the description on the bottle.
I said to my partner, “It’s all Greek to me” and then I collapsed in giggles as the perfection of that phrase hit me. I mean just look at this writing ……

If it were French I might not be able to understand but at least I could attempt to read it. In the case of the Greek language I am completely mesmerised and paralysed.
And no, I am not referring to the word paralytic, as one might be after rather too many glasses of Ouzo …. more on that later!

Meanwhile here is a friend’s comment I received on facebook when I posted this photo of the wine bottle there …. she wrote:

“Is a white wine from an area called Aigialia , this wine has a bright colour with the flavour of peach and lemon orange flavours.refreshing you can drink it with white meat , fish pasta, cheese