Ευτυχισμένος ο καινούριος χρόνος!
Happy new year from Syros!!
In the spirit of Janus, (roman god of beginnings, gates, transitions, time, duality, doorways, passages, and endings, depicted as having two faces, since he looks to the future and to the past) I am not only looking forward to 2018 but also reflecting on 2017, which for us was a fairly momentous one.
December and the run up to Christmas all seems a very long time ago now, needless to say Ermoupoli looked beautiful with lots of lights and the huge tree in Miaouli Square and, the children singing carols around it was very special.
We have returned to Syros now and it’s winter! Although it is a great deal warmer than the temperatures we left in the UK. The sun still shines and the sky is still blue and as Syros is the administrative capital of the Cyclades the cafes and bars which line the port are still full during the day with people still sitting outside drinking their coffee. However, as the sun starts to go down there is a definite chill in the air, driving people inside to eat. The beaches needless to say are deserted but beautiful. The joy of Syros is that all the way through to the end of June and from September onwards you can find uncrowded beaches where you can relax listening to the gentle rhythm of the waves lapping the shore.
Looking forward next Sunday marks the start of the Syros carnival with events running throughout the whole of the island including in the traditional settlement of Ano-Syros where the carnival was initially established and where the traditional carnival custom of Zeimbekia has been revived. Carnival ends on Monday 19th February on “Clean Monday” which is a bank holiday in Greece when all the locals take to the countryside and beaches and fly kites (Brian cannot wait!)
Although Carnival is now more associated with Orthodox traditions and the three week preparation for the 40 day Lenten fast which precedes Easter, like most traditions in Greece it also has roots in ancient history. In antiquity there were celebrations to celebrate the end of winter and the arrival of spring, these celebrations were associated with Dionysos possibly my favourite Greek god due to his association with wine and feast!
There will be more information about carnival and Clean Monday in our next newsletter coming out soon.
New year often brings a new start and for us it our new little companions Ethel and Ted, two little rescue dogs who were found together roaming the countryside just outside of the capital. So, lots more walking in 2018 another resolution ticked off !
You can see more about Syros on our destinations guide and contact us for some great prices in June while the cost of flights are still low.