Sunday – a beautiful day, the weather perfect so off to the lake with Beryl for lunch. No, I don’t mean I had Beryl for lunch I mean I took Beryl to the lake for lunch which was a good idea because it had been a long time since she was last there. We stopped off at our usual taverna, the one all on its own at the near end, used mainly by Greeks and away from the cluster of tourist tavernas at the far end. There were a few Greek families there when we arrived. No sign of Elvis so he must have gone back to or been sent back to Albania or Rumania or Bulgaria or wherever it was he came from. The lake showed how hot the summer has been and what little rain we’ve had this year. I have never seen it so low, about two thirds its normal size. It was in two distinct colours, palest bluey-green close to us and dark grey the far side beneath the mountain which crated an extraordinary optical illusion as that bit when you glanced at it quickly looked vertical like a high wall. What are those things doing on that high wall? Oh, they’re canoes and it isn’t a wall, it’s just the deepest part of the lake in the shadow of the mountain. It was busy though with pedaloes and canoeists going hell for leather and creating lengthy wakes and a few swimmers bobbing about. I mentioned to Beryl that there was salt cod and garlic potato on the menu and she thought, having never tried it, she’d have a go. Fortunately she liked it which was just as well as the portions were enormous and I have to admit very tasty. That and a village salad was plenty. When we left we went the long way round and the tourist tavernas were jam packed and more busloads of holiday-makers walking down the hill to join them. The conversation over lunch was all about theatre experiences and our neighbours must have wondered what the jokes were there was so much laughter at our table. Beryl seemed very surprised to discover that I can read Greek. The problem I have with Greek is trying to understand it when spoken. On the way back I told Beryl about the sheep eating water melon and she screamed with laughter. Back home we discovered our neighbours Nikos and Maria were having a party and there were enough cars round and about to fill a municipal car park. I wonder if it was somebody’s name day. Anyway, over tea we spent an enjoyable half hour or so going through Xanthippi attachments before it was time for her to get her taxi. It was a lovely day. When she arrived in the morning she came with two portions of boureki cooked by her landlady Anna and half a dozen new laid eggs also courtesy of Anna, at least courtesy of Anna’s chickens.
Now must get back to reading “No Official Umbrella”. Yes, finally picked it up Friday morning and have been going through it for mistakes before passing it on to Douglas. It looks a very handsome volume and he’s dying to see it but he will have to hold himself in patience for a few days as he’s not going to get it until at least Thursday. Why, may one ask? Well firstly because I’ve got to finish reading it (and I might say enjoying it despite having written it and read it a number of times before) and (b) because in their inimitable way the Greeks have called a general strike for Tuesday so there is no point in getting it to the boat until Wednesday which means his getting it Thursday. Sorry Douglas.