Cold and windy but fortunately not as forecast

It was blustery in the night and chilly on the Promontory this morning. Usually, for my run, I wear shorts and a couple of fleeces. If it’s warm, I ditch one of the fleeces before the run or after a lap or two. This morning I was wearing both until the bitter end. I did, however, roll up my sleeves. Despite the cold, I managed my six laps and we were back in good time.

I had no flax seeds, bananas or biscuits, so a trip to Petrakis was in order. I decided it was not too windy since the wind was not as powerful as forecast. It’s one of those funny days where the clouds lurk behind the mountains and the north wind blows the rain over to us. Sort of vicarious rain. Yannis was not at the supermarket so I was unable to tell him about Extra-Dog.

I was back in record time as the wind was behind me so managed to get breakfast at a sensible time for a change. I kept being sidetracked by other things and ended up having breakfast at 13:00 on one occasion.

More IT stuff to do as well as get Matthew’s books out of the way. The end of the month is approaching and I also have my own tax return to complete. Not that mine is very difficult as I have only a limited number of income sources.

A quick chat with Maria who is still on holiday in Athens. Georgia must be finding it hard work without her.

Georgia came to the camping today en route for her village to take olives to be processed. She was feeding treats to her dogs when I arrived. She told me of her plans and said she’d be at the camping tomorrow. She asked me if I’d been looking after Πέντε as she didn’t want her to be freezing alone in her kennel. I replied that Πέντε had been spending the nights with Obi and me for a while and waited at the gate each evening to be let in. That was a bit of a policy reversal from the time that I offered to look after her during her barking phase. Georgia instructed Xanthippos that Πέντε was to be kept in her house. As it turned out this evening, Πέντε was waiting at the gate as I took Pea to his house in the storeroom. She came in as I re-entered the compound and decided she’d join us for supper. A good decision considering it is meat night. She now has royal approval to hang around here so I could well have her during the busy summer period when otherwise she spends a lot of her time chained up outside her house. Her propensity to steal customers’ shoes is somewhat of a nuisance. As far as I’m concerned, she is absolutely no trouble and I have to actually remind myself that she is still there!

Antonis came to call as I was finishing my breakfast. He told me he’s still quite busy but he’d come to pick up my oil container so he could bring me some oil. What with the offer to help myself to Georgia’s oil in the camping and oil from Antonis, I am spoilt for choice. We also discussed the awning which is beginning to show signs of fatigue due to the amount of use it gets. In the normal run of things, you use your awning for maybe a month during the calm sunny weather so it lasts for years. In my case, the awning is deployed summer and winter nearly all the time. It should be taken down when the wind gets to 6 Beaufort. It’s gusting to 9 Beaufort today with the promise of stronger later.

We discussed the option to replace the fabric awning with a more permanent structure made of insulated panel. This is the same panel as used in the dog houses. A sandwich of insulation foam and metal sheet. It is strong, light and insulating. He warned me that it might be quite expensive but then a replacement fabric awning is around £400. Also, the panel would make it cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter as well as reducing the noise from flapping fabric. The plan would be to build the structure to replace the fabric awning but to retain the awning tent and the sun blockers for the summer.

A sheltered external area is essential to civilised winter living.

A deputation of stressy Albanians appeared at my gate a while ago to complain about the lack of hot water for the showers. Until yesterday, I’d been putting on the electric heater at around 16:00. The idea behind that was to use the solar heated water first and then use electricity to heat the rest. I left the heater on until I had my shower at around 18:30. The Albanians said they wanted the water to be heated earlier so I switched it on at 13:00 for two hours. Most of them finish work around 15:30 and didn’t wish to hang around waiting to have a shower later. Now they are saying there is no hot water in the evening. There are a number of problems for hot water in the camping. The tank on the bathroom roof is not huge, it serves the bathrooms and the kitchen and there is still no hot water heater at the receptions building. We made progress because we now have an electrical supply to the tank on the roof of the reception building just that the tank has no actual electrical heating element fitted. I pointed this out two years ago following my investigation. The Albanians wash their clothes in the shower which uses up the water. Also the showers, in my opinion, deliver far too much hot water and should have finer roses and less pressure. At the end of the day, the camping is not really properly equipped for lots of people in the winter.

I called Maria to explain the situation so she will get a ‘ruling’ from Georgia regarding the amount of time the electric heater can be switched on and hopefully encourage her to get the guy back to sort out the heater for the reception building tank. I encouraged the Albanians to petition Georgia themselves whilst explaining that I’m ‘just following orders’. I now need to trek over to the bathrooms to switch off the wretched heater!



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