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    • Day 26

      Mount Psiloritis on Crete

      September 12, 2022 in Greece ⋅ 🌙 72 °F

      We’ve had a pretty chill time in Crete, getting into a bit of a rhythm with a bit more home schooling, increased relaxation/down time, realizing we have a bit too much relaxation and need to be more active, and continuing to eat lots of delicious foods. We’ve been staying at an ecovillage/farm in the mountains. While it’s pretty magical in terms of a stunning natural landscape that is incredibly healthy, eco-friendly, delicious and relaxing, we are realizing that we enjoy being able to walk to destinations vs. driving.

      A few things struck us about the mountain areas of Crete:

      (1) Edible nature: every tree and plant seem to produce an edible fruit of some sort. Every plant was one of an olive, fig, pomegranate, apple, walnut, orange, mulberry, blackberry, grapes, or prickly pear/cactus. I’m not sure how one could ever go hungry with fruit plants growing out of sewers!

      (2) The roads: we thought the roads in the Dolomites were fun, but they’re nothing compared to the un-barriered, hairpin turns with no shoulder or parts of the asphalt (if there is asphalt) starting to erode down the cliff. We were all really grateful to have had Rob at the wheel to navigate the erratic roads in a manual, gutless rental.

      (3) Google maps: doesn’t always accurately reflect where there are actual roads. We spent about 20 minutes traversing a steep downhill dirt road that quickly turned into a glorified goat path and then disappeared altogether. We then had to find a spot to turn around and head back up this steep, eroding hill. I wish I had pictures, but I was all together a bit too nervous to take any.

      (4) Traditional gender roles: many of the women we met shared that they are expected to do traditional women’s work in addition to working for pay. They often go home midday from work to make food for their husbands who are shepherds and farmers. There does seem to be a mutual respect for both genders’ roles, but even Lewis and Andrew are surprised by the number of gendered comments we have heard on Crete.

      (5) Traditional, hard and beautiful way of life: many of the products we eat and enjoy are made from scratch by hand without modern conveniences. While this way of life is very appealing to us, it’s also very hard. Our favorite server, Aphrodite, shared that she gets her eggs and chickens from her mother, all her vegetables and fruit from her mother-in-law who has a small farm and she and her husband provide all the yogurt and cheese, which she makes by hand, as well as the milk and meat from their sheep and goats. She shared that her 26yo daughter does not want to return to their village as life is too hard. While it does sound like an incredible amount of work to put a meal on the table, it also sounds very rewarding and natural!
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    You might also know this place by the following names:

    Livádha, Livadha

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