Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Summer Holidays

With the new recession in Greece  and a depression in Asian and European  markets yesterday (almost a black Tuesday), I shouldn't be taking a holiday at all! June and July were busier than ever before - hence all work and no play. It's not easy these days to be an economist and run your own business. Since June, people have been protesting all over Greece against the government's new austerity measures which are to me not only unreasonable but completely insane. The bottom line is that the average citizen will pay off our debt to Europe. No, this is not a joke!

Well, I was so tired and so exhausted that I promised myself to take a break. August 15, called Dekapentavgoustos in Greece, is like a second Easter to us. I can't imagine spending this important Greek holiday in any other place than Sifnos. This is an island I fell in love with many years ago, long before it started developping tourism.

Sifnos, lies in the middle of the Cyclades islands between Serifos, Kimolos and Antiparos and is about 80 nautical miles from Piraeus. It has an area of 74 sq. km. and a shoreline of 70 km, with a population of 2000. The island is reached on the ferries which run on the Piraeus- Kythnos- Serifos- Sifnos- Sifnos- Kimolos line, and there are also sailings to other islands in the Cyclades.

Sifnos was very wealthy in ancient times, thanks to its gold and silver mines. Proof of this, is the treasury which the Siphnians built at Delphi in the 6th century BC to house their offerings. However, it appears that something went wrong with the mines; either they were worked out or flooded by the sea -we do not know which- and their production ceased. In ancient times, Siphnos's wealth was measured by the gold and silver it produced, in the last two centuries it can be measured by its cultural output.


Anastasia said...

Having heard so much from you about Sifnos, Alkis and I had first planned to spend our summer holiday there. Unfortunately, there were no rooms available in mid July at the hotel of our choice. Hopefully, next summer we'll try to book earlier. Have a wonderful holiday! Filakia.

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