Yesterday, I finally had to bin my flip flops. Three years of faithful and comfortable service over, in the sudden shearing of a rubber thong.
Arriving back at the boat has been a good reunion, our solid friend waiting to accommodate us again. Waiting patiently to be hosed and scrubbed and warmed into action, also to be liberally covered in dog hairs after last summer’s sabbatical from Kezzie.
Since arriving on Sunday we have been quietly meeting up with old friends, delivering English tea bags, chilli sauce and old sailing magazines, catching up on local news, firing up the Greek mobile and filling the veggie basket with fresh goodies from the farmers market.
Slowly slowly this time, listening to the green shoots of answered prayers and the stories of winter storms and rain.
The back streets of Poros are a maze of crooked and uneven pathways, a rise and fall of concrete, sometimes painted white or grey, occasionally marked with lines to resemble paving and frequently cracked.
Kezzie and I were winding our circuitous way to the ‘other side’ this morning, she longing to pursue a cat..any of the brazen pride would do, and me negotiating the trip factor in my previously eschewed but now gratefully retrieved new fit-flops.
Round a bend…on a straight run..was a lady. On her knees, with a bowl of sticky grey cement, a trowel and an old paint brush. Whilst filling the cracks in the path in front of her house and painting them smooth she told me her story.
Scandinavian and married to a sailor, she had spent many years enjoying summers in the Aegean and beyond until he quite suddenly died. Now she has a little house in a back street, everyone knows who she is, though she doesn’t know all of them. Wisdom spilled about nothing going on for ever and, ‘it is so hard but we had wonderful years with great memories and I am not giving up.’
What about fixing the cracks on her patch? ‘Well it’s such a little thing, but they seem to appreciate it’, she smiled, from the knees up.