Archive for the ‘Culture/Music/Film’ Category

The music box

Sunday afternoon on Panormos beach

The last three weeks, on a Wednesday, I have been watching a new music program on the state television Ert. It is called the music box/Το Μουσικό Κουτί.
The show is hosted by Nikos Portokaloglou; famous singer/songwriter and Rena Morfi; singer/actress. They invite two or three singers/musicians each time who at first glance don’t have anything in common, they may be from different music backgrounds but in the couple of hours that you hear them play and sing you find out that their musical paths have crossed in one way or another and that they can make beautiful music together. The combinations are fantastic. The choice of musical instruments and the performances give the well know Greek and foreign songs a new coat. Wonderful to hear and see. A must for Greek music lovers.

Big heaps of sand were dumped in the area below the Panajitsa tou Pirgos church. That is why you had to remove your vehicles…

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Today, almost by accident, we visited the famous burial site in Vergina (one hour drive from Thessaloniki)  My husband said we should go and see the area but we did not research anything before we went. Maybe that was a good thing. I have never been so impressed by what I saw in a museum.

Vergina is best known as the site of ancient Aigai (Αἰγαί, Aigaí, Latinized: Aegae), the first capital of Macedon. In 336 BC King Philip II was assassinated in Aigai’s theatre and his son, Alexander the Great, was proclaimed king.

Where was the burial ground of Philip II though? For many years archaeologists looked in Greece. The Greek archaeologist Manolis Andronikos became convinced that a hill called the Great Tumulus (Μεγάλη Τούμπα) concealed the tombs of the Macedonian kings. In 1977, Andronikos undertook a six-week dig at the Great Tumulus and found four buried tombs, two of which had never been disturbed. Andronikos claimed that these were the burial sites of the kings of Macedon, including the tomb of Philip II, father of Alexander the Great (Tomb II) and also of Alexander IV of Macedon, son of Alexander the Great and Roxana (Tomb III). Enough information. You have to go and see it. It is one of the most amazing collection of artefacts I ever saw. The museum is housed in the tumulus/the dome. The thought behind the set up of the museum is very clever. What has been found there is of such stunning beauty. The collection is enormous. With Covid 19 present everywhere in the world this now quiet village, that depends on tourists, unfortunately has plenty of time to pick the famous apricots, which trees, surround this beautiful area. There are hardly any visitors which is a terrible shame. Entrance fee 12 euros (every cent worth it) Students free. Sources:Unesco, World heritage site.

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We have a page with books about Skopelos. This is a new addition. The setting is a small, unnamed (fictional) island in the Sporades, but much inspired by Skopelos and to a lesser extent Alonnisos the author told me.
the last island

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Regina Boudalas

Regina Boudalas is an archaeologist, life coach, inhabitant of Skopelos and daughter of Jannis Boudalas, famous ship builder. Regina, apart from her own work as an archaeologist and life coach is also involved in the cultural activities of the municipality of Skopelos and she works along her father on his beautiful boats. Regina was featured today on the television station Alpha where she was able to talk about shipbuilding, her father and her work on Skopelos. I admire young people like Regina who are so involved in keeping the cultural heritage of Skopelos and it’s wonderful crafts alive!

Jannis Boudalas

You can find Jannis his work here

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The 15th of August is one of the biggest religious celebrations in Greece after Easter and Christmas, a national holiday that is observed by the public and private sector. Dekapentavgoustos (15 August), as the day is referred to in Greek, is the day of the Dormition of Virgin Mary. On the Greek Orthodox calendar this date marks the moment when Mary, Christ’s mother, ascended into Heaven. It is considered a day, not of mourning, but a celebration of joy for the union of the mother with her son.
(Source: GTP travel pages)

Greece today celebrates and remembers. Many Greeks will have gone to church last night or this morning and after the ceremony that will have gone out for diner in their own house or outside or for a coffee.
Maria’s, Panajotis, Panajota’s, will receive sweets, drinks and presents. The Chronia polla wish is heard everywhere.

The sweet shop Skopelitissa has wonderful handmade sweets for sale made from local Skopelitan products. They also have jams and spoon sweets. A really nice present for those that celebrate today or another nameday.

Corona patients in Greece are rising but if we wear masks where they are necessary and keep a distance, things will not get out of hand.

Make sure you have the right travel papers, tests with you when you enter or leave Greece and enter another country.

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Today and tomorrow the Glysteri beach bar has organized some live concerts. We were there this afternoon. We had a swimm and listened to the music from the beach. The concert from Nikos Jiannatos and Vangelis Karamitzas was especially wonderful! Tomorrow afternoon you can enjoy the live music again.

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On Tuesday the 7th of July a special poem night is organized by IDEA cafe and Emporium, Spira Skopelos brewers and Veranda cafe bar, (the venues are situated close to the Agios Michael church and the police office)
The evening will be presented by Mrs. Eleni Spilioti.
The poet Mrs. Maro Vlachaki will read from her own poems. The actor Angeliki Lemoni will read from the poet’s work.
Live music will be played afterwards by Niko Jiannato and Vangelis Karamintza.

The evening will start at 20.30 hours

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Language Spotting on Skopelos is an fantastic, alternative way for people who want to start learning the Greek language and find out about Skopelos culture and traditions as well.

The language spotting course consists of three meetings in three different amazing spots, one by the seaside, another in the country side and the last one up on a mountain. Each venue will offer you a taste of the amazing nature and views of the island while you are taught key words and expressions that will help you interact with locals.

You will learn to introduce yourself, ask for directions, order in a restaurant or in a bar. It is all a piece of cake after you have participated in the Language Spotting course.

So if you are longing for an exciting summer experience learning some Greek, visite amazing places, getting to know Skopelos traditions, tasting local products and making new friends, then join the Language Spotting project!

Please contact: Efcharis Mascha
Telephone: + 30 694 870 3079
Email: language_spotting@yahoo.com

Als oon facebook and Instagram

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It is nice to visit a “new” beautiful place on Skopelos. I knew of its existence but I never visited the place. Monastery Kontronaki close to Skopelos town on the road to the Agia Marina spring and church.

Unfortunately this monastery opens once or twice a year for a couple of church services. My husband an me were lucky to go inside because some maintenance had to be carried out. The whole monastery was renovated in 2004.

On the grounds are a church, several offices, bedrooms, an open kitchen, storage areas and a beautiful garden. Everything is kept immaculate and the guardians of this monastery were busy for many days to get it ready for an annual feast.

In the meantime on Skopelos visitors are trickling in. Mainly by car from the mainland and via the two main airports in Greece. Up till now everybody gets tested at the airports and needs to go into quarantine for at least a day until the results are known. Then you can travel further but you have to leave details behind where you are going. From the first of July these protocols will probably change.

During the voyage by bus or boat you need to wear a mask and keep a safe distance from other travelers. Go earlier to the boat ticket office to fill out a form with your details. I have given the link in an earlier post.

This is the form you need to fill out when coming in via an airport.
Passengers arriving to Greece from specific countries are required to complete a COVID-19 Passenger Information Form.
The form must be filled out by passengers arriving from Albania, Belgium, France, Italy, Netherlands, North Macedonia, Portugal, Spain and Sweden. Travelers from other non-EU countries will also have to fill out the form.
Passenger information form

At the moment the amount of new Covid 19 cases is fairly small but the Greek government is testing everywhere to make sure not a lot of new cases turn up. From the first of July a lot of visitors will be arriving via charter flights. Everybody needs to be careful and follow the instructions that are given. Anywhere that food is served you need to make sure that the staff wears masks and that the distance between chairs and tables is more than 1,5 meters.

Beaches like Milia have visitors but not so many and therefor it is possible to keep a distance from each other. We went yesterday afternoon and it was amazing staying there for a couple of hours. In other places where there are beach bars make sure the sunbeds are at a distance that you feel comfortable.

In one of the bigger supermarkets you will be given a paper with a number so there are not too many people in the supermarket. When the amount of people has been reached you wait outside until you are let in.
The other supermarkets are not so busy so everybody can go in but check out, in general, how many people are inside and take heed. The supermarkets will enforce the rule when it is necessary. Wait if you do not feel comfortable.

The Skopelos health center has a new office outside the health center where people can get tested if there is a suspicion that they have the corona virus. The office is there just in case. The last few days the minister for the protection of citizens is travelling to all the local airports in Greece to make sure all the health protocols are met by the employees of the airport and the airplane companies.

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The two classes of the second kindergarten school on Skopelos have launched a wonderful initiative. The three teachers, the parent’s board and the parents did not want to lose contact whilst being in quarantine and opened in the second week of the lock down a Facebook “members only” group for the parents and their children.

Teachers Lia Pegiou, Ioanna Diamanti and Fenja Dakou give the pupils different assignments and tasks and the results are uploaded on the page. Various themes like the spring, Easter, mother’s day, basic colors, playing with letters are combined with drawing, playing with clay, cooking etc.

The teachers upload videos where they read a book or teach something. Here one of the teachers shows a trick with milk and liquid colors.

Once in a while the children have face time meetings with the other children (37) One time they sang a song together. I can imagine how that went with 37 children! Also parents and children make videos together and upload them.

To eat healthy is also something the teachers pay attention too and several videos of children cooking (with adult supervision of course) have been uploaded. In the group they also celebrate birthdays of the children and the teachers read books for the children every other day.

Everybody is very happy with this wonderful initiative where parents work/play together with their children and the teachers keep in contact with the pupils and the parents.
The children like it very much but they would rather be together in the classroom again. That is really what they are looking forward to!! Hopefully they will will meet soon again.

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