Kardamili: doors, bats, belfries, fish, funky art, olive groves, gorge-hopping …. all grist to a rich memory

I keep going on about the great footpaths around Kardamili …. because it’s true!  There are colour-coded walks shown on the hiking map and marked on the ground but the great thing is that you can pick’n’mix as you fancy.

Monday and I did just that.  And, even though this was my 8th full day of walking around Kardamili, most of it was new to me.  I put together bits of walks: first one marked by a red ’x’; then a blue dot on a square red background; then a white ‘+’ on a green square; then red and yellow vertical stripes; then a single yellow stripe shortcut to finish on black and yellow vertical stripes.  Now just how mixed and interesting is that!!  Added up to a great day.

Before we get there, a bit of ramble.  I have banged on before about the philosophy of time and how I was very influenced in my thinking on the subject by ‘The Magic Mountain’ by Thomas Mann.  Simply, if your time is full of interesting and novel stuff then it seems to go quickly as you pass through it but when you look back on it it seems to be longer than it actually was.  Conversely if nothing new is happening and you’re bored, time drags but when looked back on seems to have flashed by.  I borrowed the book from the sixth form library in school when I was 16 and the truth of it has been confirmed over the years ever since.  It seems self-evident.

Having decided I need to bring my knowledge of and thinking about the subject up-to-date, The Magic Mountain having been published in 1924, I’m now reading a book on my Kindle called ‘Time Warped: unlocking the mysteries of time perception’ by Claudia Hammond.  I haven’t yet finished the book but have reached a point where she says: “I believe monotony and variety are crucial to explaining many of the mysteries of time” then goes on to acknowledge the contribution of The Magic Mountain which “pre-dated and seems to have anticipated much of the research on the perception of time”.  Anticipated it by a century given that he started it in 1912.

Hammond goes on to identify what she terms the ‘Holiday Paradox as the key factor, really a re-stating of the Mann thesis but adding a sharper distinction between prospective and retrospective views of time.

It’s a good book which, so far at least, confirms and reinforces what I already thought.  But then isn’t that how we all define a ‘good’ book, one which reinforces our views and prejudices.

Back to the walk.  I don’t find it paradoxical at all that the amount of new stuff I see every day makes the time go quickly and stores up memories.  I reinforce the memories with the camera, and to some extent the blog.  And I try to share them by the same means.

Today’s walk was just such a case in point.  I walked up to Saidona, another village at about 600 metres ASL, through new landscapes, dropping down into and then climbing out of another gorge, then following the rim of the Viros Gorge again. Bringing together in a single walk 6 footpaths totalling about 25 kms. New stuff all the time. General landscapes.  A ‘new’ gorge.  Views.  Details.  Buildings and structures.  Flora and fauna.  It’s all new to me and therefore novel and interesting.

Locals must regard a bloke photographing their village church or taverna, or olive groves and fields, or insects crawling on plants as a bit weird.  But then they might be fascinated by the local stuff in South Wales which I try to see with ‘fresh’ eyes but really ignore as ordinary.  I remember someone coming to stay and being excited by seeing buzzards flying overhead.  We see them every day flying over the house, perching on lamp posts on the dual carriageway, being mobbed by crows, and so they arouse no interest.

The area around Kardamili is all new to me and so is filled with the novel and the interesting.   Long may I remember it.

Stone bridge over the Noupadi Gorge

The dry bed of the heavily vegetated gorge can just be made out a long way below the bridge

This door at the side of the bridge just appealed to me. What is the story?

One of the many small, generally very simple, ‘family’ churches at the side of the path. This one built in 1826.

Inside many of them are a couple of small frescoes

Inside some of them are horseshoe bats

Don’t know whether there are any bats in the belfry

Laid back, very simple tavernas with shade tree in the mountain villages. This one in Saidona.

…. and just over the fence is a drop to a 10 metre long water tank with at least 100 golden carp. Unexpected!!!!

Funky art on the cut ends on the trunk of a palm tree

Well-tended olive groves round here in contrast with Parga/Paxos/Corfu. The crop of hay underneath has been cut ready to lay nets

Some of the paths are like gardens. The scent from the broom is intoxicating.


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1 Response to Kardamili: doors, bats, belfries, fish, funky art, olive groves, gorge-hopping …. all grist to a rich memory

  1. fleck1welsh says:

    I’ve never seen myself a bat roosting (or resting?). Great picture.

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