We hear that Greece runs out of money on Tuesday but Angela Merkel is coming to sort it all out. Isn’t she kind. All the nice people we have met these past few weeks will be saved but to these local people, it would not matter if Greece ran out of money three times over, these lovely people would live off their skills and plant husbandry while others starved. Who the friggin’ hell does Angela “sodding” Merkel thinks she is, a little like Jimmy Savile with Jim’ll Fix It. They are definitely of the same persuasion.
We settled down to another day of torpor, are numbers reduced to 10. A more manageable number food wise. Today is like yesterday and the day before ad infinitum. Mid 30sC, with a lovely breeze lent to us by Albania, which can only just be seen in the early afternoon haze.
Back to Savile again, we just cannot give him up. This situation if handled rightly by the thinking people of this world could be the breakthrough we have been looking for, for years but we have to be wary of smokescreens and diversions. How does a boy and not a very intelligent boy, brought up in the back streets of Leeds, whose father was a bookies runner advise the royal family on Andrew’s marriage problems and advise the Cnesset on how to deal with the Palestinian problem, how did he come to be a friend of Peter Sutcliffe, the Yorkshire Ripper, and the Vatican who made him a Knight of St Gregory, unless they had less intelligence than he. Or was it because he could supply a need that they all lacked. There is something totally weird about a bi-sexual, marathon athlete, paedophilic, international politico, DJ, morgue assistant that baffles the imagination. I firmly believe, as I said the other day, that he was a lieutenant of a higher order, the Illuminati, this group of world bankers we have known of for a few hundred years whose purpose is to rule and control the world by a system of eugenics. Their way is by controlling the politicians and royalty, by understanding their weaknesses and supplying what they need, but how a man from Leeds got mixed up with that load of twats is anybody’s guess.
We, as a group, have been talking of this conundrum for the past couple of days and cannot stop talking about it and have come up with all sorts of answers, none of them making much sense at all. The man was uneducated, he was not able to put a proper sentence together but obviously he had this street wise ability to manufacture a lifetime of evil, which would have caught out the normal villain in his youth and he was often, but Savile seems to have been protected by someone or something, obviously with orders from on high.
My torpid afternoon was jarred and dashed when Helen wanted money from the cash machine. Yes, these machines in part are still working or at least working for those with money in the bank and not under their mattress. So down to Ipsos about a mile as the crow flies but at least 20 minutes concentrated driving as we sweep down the many hair-pins onto the coast road and with money in her pocket, it was shopping time. We got back to the villa two and a half hours later to find kids, parents and Jessica gone probably hitting a beach somewhere. I washed and prepared a light meal whilst Helen swam and without encumbrants allowed our flair for alcohol to start at 5.30pm. A quenching beer first, followed by a glass of Prosecco and then a calming and soporific ouzo. Lots of yachts out on the straits and in the bay, the breeze has ceased, the haze increased. It is 6.00pm and 31C. Absolute quiet pervades. This little moment in time is heaven.
We have just ate Salami Romagna, Gorgonzola cheese, a salad of tomatoes, red onions and lettuce and boiled eggs and lots of bread from the village baker which is one of my all time favourites. You could eat this stuff three times a day, seven days a week in this weather and never tire of it. The local glorious tomatoes, red onions and lettuce are the best I have ever eaten and are as cheap as chips.
We get news that the parents and child that left us this morning are safely esconced back in Manchester, laughing at the emergency situation with car and taxi this morning and blaming everything on me. I have a broad back and anyway what is life without excitement. I am on my second ouzo and that emergency seems weeks ago. It is now approaching 7.00pm and our idyll is about to be blown apart. Hungry tired kids will now need satisfying for the next hour as faces are filled, arses cleaned, nappies on and pyjamas worn.
Day 13 will probably end with a discussion on best bits and worst bits, places and restaurants and a gradual slide into a restful sleep. This Villa del Cielo in Spartilas is possibly the finest place I have ever stayed on holiday. Everything is here, you do not need to go to or do anything except buy food and a tad of booze. Google it and try it, you will not be disappointed. The cost is high but if there are enough of you it ain’t bad.
I was right, an evening spent on reflection, discussing the holiday, drinking the local wine out of the plastic bottles and then to bed for a magnificent 10 hour sleep and an awakening to a sun well up in the sky. The haze greater than yesterday and poor Albania invisible, even Corfu town can only just be seen across the bay, rather darker grey than the haze. We are going up the mountain for lunch to our favourite taverna, a la Palea in Strinilas. I have just had my breakfast and I am getting hungry thinking of the feast to come.
Up the mountain we went and this time we were guided up to the balcony of the main building, the shaded dining area where we normally sat was occupied by locals. Our man quickly brought out our favourites, their own red and white wine. The white was quenching on the tongue, soft on the throat and left a lovely fruity aftertaste. The red strong and full of fruit and smooth on the tongue. He was very busy but he managed to sneak out to us a tray of bread and bowls of Scordalia, a garlic and almond mayonnaise type dish, a lovely aubergine dish of olives, aubergine and peppers and Tzatsiki, herbs, yoghurt, garlic and cucumber. I tried my best to decide which of them was my favourite but couldn’t. I suppose if my life depended on a decision I would go for the aubergine which had a subtle hint of fruit, but all were great. He then told us that they had killed a couple of lambs the day before and he stressed they were off the mountain and had a different taste. He was right, it came roasted with herbs and potatoes but looked as though it had been butchered with an axe. The meat was soft and tasty, in fact gorgeous. The deserts in this place are free and he brought us out a lemon/rice pie trickled with honey from his own hives. Simply superb. The bill was paid, we said our goodbyes, we bought our customary few gallon of his wine and set off back down the mountain fully replete. The waiter who was the face of the establishment was well pleased, we gave him a 20 euro tip which doubled his wages that day.
A last afternoon by the pool, the thought of packing was a necessary burden on our minds, which we ignored. Tomorrow will be a rush as we have to vacate by 10.00am and then we will have a thirteen hour wait for our plane. Some quiet corner has to be found, a little lunch and home I suppose by 1.00am Tuesday, English time.
The plusses and minuses of this holiday are:-
1.) Superbly equipped villa with all modern conveniences including a very necessary air conditioning system.
2.) The view is unbelievable, the location and the wild smells of the mountain.
3.) The local home made wine.
4.) The warm sea and the steady 30+C of dry heat
5.) The boats especially on the east and protected side of the island.
6.) The kids and the pool.
7.) The fact that time does not exist.
8.) The beds were so comfortable, fantastic.
9.) Strinilas and a la Palea Taverna.
1.) The mosquitos which bit us in places man or woman has never got to.
2.) The contoured landscape of the villa was sometimes a little too much for the aged.
3.) The dishwasher was a complete waste of time although new but at least it kept me busy as the appointed bottle washer.
4.) Wiping your arse and throwing tissues into a bin, necessary for the island’s plumbing system but slightly distasteful to our western senses.
5.) The tower although beautiful and romantic had no proper shower system only one outside on the mountain in full view of thousands but with a fair distance between.
6.) The coastal strips reminded me too much of the 1960s. Planning gone mad but at least the sea was warm and clean.
7.) The tortuous access road off the main road, incredibly rough and harmful to cars, never mind dangerous and precarious at any time of day and the stupidly narrow, architecturally designed gateway.
On our last proper day it is now 5.30pm, the heat is falling, the haze lifting, Albania is in full view, there are thirty or forty yachts out on the bay and in the straits, the last ferry has left for Greece, Corfu Town is shining in the last few hours of sun. It is Sunday afternoon and except for the squawking of the two year old twins it is all so quiet and peaceful and once again Mr Ouzo has his eye on me and who can blame him. Incroyable!!!
That evening, once the kids were asleep, we set ourselves the stentorian task of finishing off all the booze in the house. We failed miserably and there was lots left over for the maids husbands. However we were up early on Day 15 having to be away by 10.00am so that maids could maid and managers manage. We were away down the mountain for the last time at 10.15 leaving the house like a new pin, or nearly such. We had a long day in front of us, so we considered a tour of the southern half of the island, where we had never trespassed.
It was horrible, I had been worried about Ipsos in the northern half but this Southern tract was horrible, full of desolate, shanty type resorts. They reminded me of the ghost towns in old western movies. However we did find a lovely farmhouse miles from anywhere on the side of a large sea-water lake, that specialised in agri-tourism. You could work on the farm and stay in one of the chalets. Vegetables, olives, honey and fruit were their specialities and the food was fresh and delicious, except they failed with the fish which they coated in a rough tempura type batter. It didn’t need it. Fresh fish, which it was, just needs heat for a few minutes, nothing added. They called it Godfish but I haven’t a clue what it was. It was full of fine triangular shaped bones.
We came back to Kekyra or Corfu Town, a warren of narrow streets, selling all sorts of trinkets. It reminded me of the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul without a roof. We sat in a cafe and had a snack and then off to the airport with time to spare. Getting five little children and five adults with all the pertaining baggage through a strange airport is no mean feat, especially one has outdated as Corfu. Easyjet solved most of our problems, the flight was early, children were let on first, the Easyjet courtesy was evident throughout. Far better than the dismissive Ryanair, but not quite as nice as my beloved Aer Lingus.
Back in Manchester at 1.00am and home for 1.45am and straight to bed, exhausted after a magnificent two weeks. Thank you Villa del Cielo