August 2006
August delivered the hottest weather. Even the house was hot - up to 33C! Difficult to keep cool although the floor standing fan, which we bought, did help a bit. Most days the temperature was between 33C and 38C.

We enjoyed several swims in the sea at Kalives and Kalami during the first three weeks of the month but the winds became stronger towards the end of the month, making the sea rough. When not by the sea we cooled off sitting down by the river bed on a pebble beach- just outside Stilos.

Friday, 4th August - Alan and Margaret met us in Stilos at 10.15 pm and we enjoyed a meal and musical entertainment at one of the village tavernas. When we left about 2 a.m. things were still in full swing.

July and August is music festival time in Stilos and several times a week there is live music until the early hours of the morning.

We went to Almiritha one morning - just along the coast from Kalives ,where it had been too rough to swim. We enjoyed frappes sitting in a cafe by the beach watching the windsurfers.

On one trip to the river, where we sat in the cool shade of the trees, Roy waded into the water to obtain his photos of the rare Cretan Spectre (details on his site). The gate of the small church, by the river, was decorated with a floral garland.

We are also enjoying produce from the garden and collecting fresh figs from the trees in the countryside.

Tilly and Jim (whom we stayed next door to at Vamos winter 2004/5) had offered us the use of their pool as the sea was so rough. We enjoyed a few swims there in August but now they have sold their property and are planning new ventures.

On one journey from Vamos to Provarma we decided to investigate a side road we had passed numerous times. We found a newly constructed church and an outside area paved in stone, complete with floodlights. There is also a pretty mosaic. We had a short walk in the surrounding area but it was very windy with clouds of dust.

Tuesday, 15th August -
was Assumption Day, Feast of the Panagia. This is the next most important festival in Greece - after Easter. It is a time when families gather to celebrate and enjoy themselves. The beach at Kalives, and the tavernas were crowded from about 11.30a.m.  Large family groups from babies to grandparents joined in the celebrations.

Friday, 18th August - we met Alan and Margaret at Kalami (it was still 34C at 5.30 p.m.) Alan then drove us to Agia Reservoir where a good variety of birds were seen.  We had coffee there and then went to Armeni for a meal around 9 p.m.  Armeni seems a very quiet village during the day but comes alive at night. With the church floodlit and several crowded tavernas it had a lovely atmosphere. Another enjoyable evening.

The remainder of the month continued to be hot. We swam in the sea when it was not too rough and sometimes in the pool.

Sunday, 27th August - we again enjoyed a meal at Alan and Margaret's home with Tony and Sue. We sat outside for the evening on the upper balcony overlooking  Georgioupoli bay enjoying a delicious spread and pleasant company.  When we left at  1 a.m. the car was damp with dew. The temperature had been 34C during the day.

Tuesday, 29th August - was a very windy day so as we were unable to swim. We decided to have a trip to Theriso Gorge and then on to Zourva, in the mountains, and back via Meskla. In Provarma it was 32C but in the mountains a pleasant 25C. When at the highest point on the road over the mountain we stopped to admire the view. Here, as in many other areas, tracks are being covered with tarmac which snake through the mountains.

On the trip we had a puncture. We called into a taverna near Zourva  for lunch, and Manolis (who it transpired lives in Stilos) helped to change the wheel. The Gorge was still quite green in spite of all the hot summer weather. On the way back we called in at Agia Reservoir - always a pleasant spot - and saw a Hoopoe and three Glossy Ibis (more on Roy's wildlife diary).

Gorge still green

Tarmac 'snake' track

Agia Reservoir

By the end of August - after several hours on the internet and calls to England - due to problems with the Thomson site - I had managed to book a flight to Gatwick for 12th September for two weeks. Roy felt unable to undertake the trip to the UK because of his back problem.
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