Welcome to another amazing winter month here in Crete, with clear skies, mild temperatures and minimal rainfall these quiet winter months are a real pleasure. Everywhere looks so lush and inviting set against the blue sky, with the green and yellow of the trifili fields, like rolling grassy meadows, one could almost be fooled into thinking Spring is here already!
The thick blanket of snow on the Psiloritis Mountains has begun to melt and down by the river Platys the waters have at last begun to flow. While walking along the river last week I noticed hints of pink, white and purple scattered across the fields and at the roadside; the anemones are in bloom. At the local market are bunches of Narcissus flowers, so pretty! Lots of shops have a bunch in a vase next to their till, this just makes shopping locally much more pleasant.
Friday February 16th is the start of the carnival festivities, Apokries, in Greece. Originally, it was a celebration for the god of feast and wine, Dionysus and nowadays it is a celebration lasting over three weeks: Greece certainly knows how to enjoy the good stuff.
Clean Monday, Kathara Deftera, is on Monday 19th February and marks the first day of Lent, which means for some no eating of meat, fish, eggs, dairy or oil until Easter. Here in Greece, on Clean Monday we gather our nearest and dearest and head out with a hearty picnic, plenty of drinks and, of course, a kite. Then we sit back watching the sky and enjoying the colourful kites of all shapes and sizes as they breeze across a, hopefully, clear blue sky. Kalo mina, everyone!
Photo credit: Anemones from Agia Galini, Crete