Happy New Year!

I was tucked up good and early last night and there were no interruptions other than those that are expected once one reaches a certain age and eats loads of watery food in the evening.

It was cold but dry as we set off across the field. I walked everyone around for two circuits just in case it started to rain. Then I took Obi and Skinny for another circuit with everyone on the last. We walked the rocks and made it back to the camping without any dampness. I put all the dogs into the van then went off on my bike to Gialiskari Beach. It’s about 8km each way. I tried cycling on the beach but it’s very hard work in soft sand. Even with big, fat tyres, they start to sink in. I noticed that the paths had been washed away by the recent rain as were some of the larger tracks. The water runs down the gorge with quite a bit of force when it rains for several days and we’ve had a bit of that. It wasn’t particularly pleasant as rain was blowing over the mountains so I decided to call it a day and to go back to the dogs.

I saw a woman walking her dog and a load of cats as I approached Paleochora Camping. She explained that the cats follow her when she walks her dog in the morning but this might be something to do with the fact that she also feeds them! Apparently, there are twenty-two cats at the Palechora Camping although not all were with her at that precise moment. They all looked pretty healthy and well-fed to me. It made my seven dogs and only five cats seem like I’m not really trying!

I cycled back to Grammeno, let the dogs out of the van, and went for a shower. I’d checked that the boiler was heating up properly before I left for my ride. I had a long, hot and enjoyable shower and then made myself some breakfast. A message from Yiannis Petrakis informed me my bonus cat food was on the pickup heading towards the camping and sure enough, it arrived as predicted.

I ate breakfast then wandered down the camping to see who was around. Damian was the only person present as Fabian had gone with his dog down for a walk to Krios and the Iranians had left in their car, presumably for a day out somewhere. I’d suggested they walk from Krios to Elafonissi but perhaps they had other ideas. They’ve not been seen since but then they could be in Paleochora ready to boogie the night away.

The remainder of the day was fairly uneventful. I was surrounded by sleeping dogs as it was sunny and the tent heated up nicely. I think I may move the tent area around a bit as it’s chilly when the door is open and I’m sitting in the chair.

Peter returned mid-afternoon and Georgia appeared with Isabella on a rope. She told me Isabella had decided to visit Manolis and Lisa. She was with me as I talked to Peter but she has become more independent and likes to go exploring. Usually in search of things to eat. This can include all kinds of unpleasant items which we will not even consider at this point in time.

I went to Manolis to return his rope and Georgia joined us. I followed their conversation from a distance but it was not terribly interesting causing my mind to wander. Manolis and Lisa are getting on well setting up their new domain but still need the room at the reception. This is a problem for Zaher, the Syrian guy, as they need to be closer to Kountoura in order to find work. If they don’t have work, they can’t pay for the room so it’s a circular problem. He was a little surprised when I said Georgia would require one month in advance but I told him Georgia might be persuaded to accept two weeks at a push.

Either I forgot to close the inner gate or one of the dogs has learned to open it. I found some of the dogs had gone walkabout when I came back. Strange really. If I’d inadvertently left the gate open then why wait until the afternoon to wander off? They were only in the next field and came back fairly soon after I returned.

It seems that everyone on the camping has an evening of partying in front of them. Most plan to have something to eat then go to bed. I reckon I’ll be asleep by 10:00 so Happy New Year to everyone!


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