I had an interesting weekend! On Saturday was the “blessing of the waters” ceremony. It’s celebrated as the anniversary of the baptism of Jesus. In the morning, Linda and I went to the main church where they had a service. After the service, everyone headed to the dock and the Holy Icons were paraded while the priests and alter boys followed.
When everyone arrived at the dock we watched as the priest threw a cross into the water three times (the first two times the cross is tied with a ribbon so it could be pulled back out) and pigeons are released each time too. On the third throw, some brave guys jumped into the water and raced to get it. The one who gets the cross has good luck for the year and he also gets a cross necklace. There were only 3 guys who decided to take the jump; it was windy and quite cold!
In the evening I made maki sushi for the first time. Sushi isn’t popular here so you can’t find it anywhere but I found a store that sold most of the ingredients for it. I started off without the raw fish (my fav) and made a california roll instead. I couldn’t find crab, so I used lobster and it was goooood!
Sunday was mostly sunny and got quite warm during the day. It was a clear day so I decided to ride up the highest mountain on the Island (called Mount Pandes, I believe) A lot of the time it’s covered with clouds and I’ve even seen snow on it (in Nov I think). It gets really cold up there.
I took Markos’ bike since it has to be ridden while he’s away. It was a very nice ride to the top! I wasn’t exactly sure how to get there but I knew I had to take a road from behind Lefkes village. I took a detour and ended up at a monastary so I had to turn around. It was a windy rode with concrete and unpaved patches. Sometimes the road would wind along a very steep mountain side and there are no guards, so you have to pay attention! The first pic below is the mountain from about half way up. See the antenea things on top? That's my target.
When I got to the top, my hands were freezing eventhough I had big gloves on; it was cold. There was such a great veiw! I could see a bunch of other islands too, like Syros, Delos, Antiparos, and Naxos… It was kinda isolate because there was no one up there but me for a while – one car came later. I assumed there’d be people manning the station but I didn’t see anyone. And there are no other buildings or things around, just the long windy road and rocky terrain.
The way back went a lot faster because I new where I was going. Here’s a great view of Lefkes and Naxos in the background (second pic).
I stopped at Lefkes to look around for a bit. I went for a nice walk and here are some pics:
Later in the day, I went for a walk along the water in Paroikia. Here are some pics from that: