Δεν ελπίζω τίποτα
Δε φοβούμαι τίποτα
I expect nothing. I fear no one. I am free.
- Νίκος Καζαντζάκις.
Thank you for coming to this site. It is an honour and a surprise to have the frenzied thoughts of my wanderings in Greece expressed on the internet.
I sincerely appreciate the efforts of Tim Berners-Lee, the man who invented and then gave away the World Wide Web, in bringing this curious work to your attention. I hope you will find the site useful or amusing.
When I was young my family instilled the need to restrain my natural boisterousness whenever we had visitors in our home or made acquaintance with people we had never met before, and this reserved behaviour became prevalent even into my teenage years and certainly didn't help me break the ice when in the company of strangers, until I went to Greece, that is. There's no such thing as ice in Greece, well not the snooty type, and particularly not amongst the village community. Instead they shower strangers with warm hospitality and sincere conviviality, so you can understand, dear visitor, how grateful and carefree I felt to be able to breathe again once in the company of such generous, brave, hard-working and uncomplicated people.
This is a personal site, full of personal opinion and therefore open to debate. May I suggest that you skip over the parts you don't like or disagree with, dip into it here and there, and perhaps you will find a passage or even a page that resonates with your curiosity. After a while, if you are sufficiently bored or unemployed, you may want to read it from beginning to end, in any case I thank you for your interest in this wordy collection of gossip, humour, favourite imagery, and muffled hopes and fantasies - an interest which indicates to my thinking a rather reckless, though touching, generosity on your part.
Grecofilia is simply a word I coined to describe a love for all things Greek and when I am in Greece it is a consciousness, an intuition, truly beautiful and pleasant, that comes with the realisation that I am actually walking there, in that land, on that soil, and it is something usually best expressed with a smile.
It introduced itself to me on my first visit to the home of art and thought, the land of Socrates and Plato, in the responsibility I was given by the taxi driver with a great heart who agreed to wait while I, a complete stranger in his country, disappeared into a busy street to search for somewhere to exchange sterling for drachmas so I could pay my fare.
In that single crystal moment I realised I was home, a member of a world-wide family. And, as we all know, in Greece it's all about family.
I felt included wherever I went. I read the books of writer and philosopher Nikos Kazantzakis, the works of perhaps the most important poet of the 20th century, George Seferis and of translator, lyricist and poet Nikos Gatsos. I listened to the deeply moving yet unsophisticated rembetika music of Sotiria Bellou and Dionysiou Stratos, Vassilis Tsitsanis and Marika Ninou, Yiannis Papaioanou and dear Markos Vamvakaris, music that, even to this day, touches me more deeply than anything I have heard or felt since. People gave me things and told me things and I began to write them down. More discoveries were kept in notebooks, jotters, scraps of paper, memory and postcards and these I sent home to myself as I ambled about the mainland, seas and islands of Greece.
What you have before you is more of a well-spring than a website - in that it's just the beginning.
Dear Visitor, please forgive me if I am wasting your time.
By the way, as you wander through the site you may want to look more closely at some of the images,if so, then either right click on the image then on 'View image' to see the larger and original size, or left click on the image and simply hope for the best...
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