Week 31

19 July, 2009

We were a couple of hours before Ancona so we snatched a few hours sleep and then drove on to the port as the sun rose. We boarded ‘Superfast V’ and went to our cabin for a much needed shower. Out for lunch and then a long sleep in our cabin.

20th July, 2009

We got up at 6.30 am (4.30 am UK time).  Tea in our cabin and then out for Breakfast of Bacon, Sausage, Egg and crusty rolls followed by coffee. Then straight to the Internet Cafe to do this Blog. Meant to say that I received a text from Mike in the middle of the night saying he was sitting under a tree in 37 C temperatures. Strange lad!

We get off this ferry in Patras – a Greek port and University town at 11.30 am although it is bound to be late.

21st July, 2009

Woke to our first morning of brilliant blue skies and searing sun. It will be a big day. We have to unpack the car and assemble, attach, store everything we brought. First things first. I phone Nova TV (Greek Sky) to get our satellite reception switched on. This is vital. We get perfect reception Greek channels + BBC News + CNN and many other Sky channels + 6 Sports channels which will give me the Test matches + all the premier league matches from England. It is my life line. Next we go out to order The Times for each morning – 1 day late.

22nd July, 2009

Can you believe it – another sunny day. Bowl of fresh fruit – peaches, apricots and apples chopped up. Had my hair cut outside – at minimal cost – by Pauline. Eventually get out to the internet cafe (a shed with four networked computers) to do this Blog.

After lunch the house is looking tidy and we go off to collect the three huge boxes we sent by Parcelforce. They have arrived intact. One contains kitchen gadgets – a food processor, a meat mincer with sausage maker attachment, a potato ricer, a mandolin, etc. Another box contains new clothes and shoes + sun tan lotion, shampoo, toothpaste, etc, – all things we can’t get or are much more expensive. The third box contains gardening items, baking items – dried yeast for bread, baking powder, + lots of films on cds. We go for a swim, cook steak and jacket potato with salad for tea and sit outside in the warm breeze, watching the stars and the boats before bed.

23rd July, 2009

Hot but windy day. Got up at 7.30 am and drove up to Apollonia an hour later to visit the hardware store. I bought a pressure washer for cleaning the car and the patio areas. In this hot, dry, dusty climate everything needs washing regularly. We then went on to the Garden shop and bought a bag of compost for growing seedlings – although we are only here for three months this year, I intend to grow rocket, salad leaves, radishes, courgettes and some herbs. We bought a ‘sweet basil’ plant in a pot in case I fail.

Coming home by 10.30 am, the temperature was already 28⁰C. We had breakfast of fresh fruit and coffee. The rest of the morning was spent by me unpacking my new desktop computer, installing the printer and the new scanner.


I had put all the software on it before I left home. School kindly bought it for me.

Office 2007 Professional
Macromedia Dreamweaver
AuthorwareAdobe Photoshop

The whole lot would have cost me £1500.00 so I feel truly grateful. They were a wonderfully charitable institution.We went out for The Times which I had ordered. Today is Thursday so I picked up the Wednesday edition. I read it over coffee. Trust Mum to miss the top story – a second report of 450 new cases of child abuse by priests in the Dublin Diocese alone. This, added to the early cases unearthed two years ago, brings the total to over 500. They kept getting away with it because the Bishops made them say a few ‘Hail Mary’s and reallocated them to another parish where they could start abusing all over again. Blood Catholics!I then moved on to the second gadget of the day. I bought a CD Player and Digital Radio from Comet in Huddersfield and some wireless speakers so I could play the machine in the house and listen to it outside under the pergola. Pavarotti invaded the Greek countryside this afternoon before a trip down to the beach and a long swim in gloriously warm water.

24th July, 2009

7.30 am seems to be the time for getting up nowadays. We have the air conditioning on freezing for an hour before we go to bed and then turn it off and just use the central ceiling fan all night. We close the bedroom shutters at night because Pauline prefers to sleep in pitch black so she can’t see me. Opening them up at 7.30 am, one is met with a blinding light which renders one groggy for some time.

After breakfast of homemade bread toasted with homemade raspberry jam, I built my new pressure washer with Pauline’s help – well she did it really – and proceeded to clean the patio. While she tried out her new food processor, I went for a walk in our grounds to check on the fig trees which are coming on well and baring fruit.

pressure_washer.jpg    food_processormeat_mincer.jpg

We went out for a swim and picked the paper up at the same time. The water was so warm I nearly complained. We had a long swim across the bay and drove home absolutely shattered. We finished the day by griddling Pork Steaks on our outdoor oven under the pergola. Pauline did baked potatoes and Greek salad to go with it and it was all washed down by a cool bottle of claret. Life cannot get much better than this.

25th July, 2009

The BBC tells me it is Saturday. It could be any day apart from the fact that a few more working Greeks find time to go down to the beach at the weekend. We awake to about 28⁰C and it will get to about 33 – 34⁰C by the middle of the day. In Athens it will be 42⁰C today. The beauty of being on a island is that the temperatures are moderated at both ends.

Jobs today include: sowings seeds in peat pots
finishing the cleaning of the patio
cleaning the car

Well I might go swimming at least.

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