Nature boy

Empty oil cans are a reminder of the now derelict family oil press

Today I was reminded how much I feel at home in the country, in nature, out in the sticks if you like.

I’m staying in a region called Μάνη, in the southern Peloponnese. The landscape here has a barren beauty. Olives, figs and citrus fruits thrive, but anything else needs constant watering to stand a chance of survival.

However, a trip to the now derelict mill (above) previously owned by T’s grandfather illustrated how life flourishes in even the seemingly most inhospitable environments.

I remember visiting last year and hearing tales of the mysterious, stinky pig-like creature which burrowed it’s way into the ruins of the old olive press (still unidentified -we think it might be some kind of weasel, badger maybe).

Today, as we stumbled around the blackened walls, a startled colony of bats took umbrage and fled into the darkness of an internal room. Stoicly, I led us out into the light, to encounter a couple of very well fed stray cats whilst donkeys and goats roamed the adjacent fields. To top it off we passed the sheltered alleyway where a litter of puppies was born last year.

Later, in my alfresco office, lizards basked in the afternoon sun, swapping their feet on the hot concrete, whilst wasps the size of my little finger buzzed overhead.

A stark contrast to the urban jungle of London town I left less than a week ago. I kinda like it here. Enough rambling, here are the words of the day:

  • βέβαια/ /βέβαιως – sure/ok/certainly – (vev-ay-os)
  • κλειδί – key – (klee-thee)
  • οδηγώ – (I drive – o-thee-go)
  • βράδυ – evening – (vra-thee)