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Monday, 11 October 2010


We took the opportunity of having a week in Corfu. The rest of the year will be busy and so some sunshine and new pastures fitted the bill perfectly. We chose an hotel close to but not in, Corfu Town and were able to access the town easily for 90 cents on the bus. We climbed to the top of the Old Fort, shown here. Later we climbed to the top of the Venetian Fort as well. The place was well fortified over the centuries!The views from the top were grand. The clouds passed by for one day. The stormy weather stayed for another but the rest of the time was hot and sunny with brilliant blue sea and skies. The best coffee I have had since leaving Melbourne was to be had at the "Europe Cafe" in Eleftherias with the old cricket pitch in the park beside it. This grand old street is paved with marble and specialises in cafes.
We trod the streets all over town. Many parts must date back centuries and there has been a tradition of patching up and building a bit more on so that many areas are a pastiche of eras, styles and uses.
This could be one of the oldest basketball courts in the world, or it could have been put up yesterday on an empty space.
The sea is in the background of everything. We stayed at an hotel with its own beach as well as all the rest and watched three or four cruise ships arrive and leave the port a kilometre away each day. This one is catching the setting sun as it sails past the hotel gardens. It is blocking your view of Albania. Day trips to Albania can be got for a mere 60 euros but are titled "Albanian Adventure" so that you don't expect too much comfort. Talking about comfort... if we return we shall try the Corfu Palace Hotel in town. We snuck in for a sticky beak and were mightily awed.
The epic building of supermarkets around the corner from us continued while we were away. The new Bishop Auckland Football Club is nearly ready for its first match and a giant Sainsbury's and a Tesco Extra are competing to see which will open first. They are across the road from one another, will offer all the same things and petrol and have caused havoc to the traffic for weeks while roundabouts and new roads are emplaced. The bus routes will be changed and teams of builders, electricians, plumbers, gas workers and JCB drivers are working around the clock to be the first store to open. Vast quantities of material have to be removed from the site while new utilities are put in place and then all the material will have to be returned to fill in the gaping holes and landscape them. All I want is some decent bread within walking distance.
Cheers Gillian


chillsider said...

Thanks for the trip to Corfu, never been there, but always wanted to after reading My family and other animals.

chillsider said...

House swop could be a good idea, maybe next year when I suspect Hattie the dog will no longer be with us.

carol said...

We enjoyed a holdiay on Corfu years and years ago (don't get hols. these days! Sob!) Being a foodie I remember stifatho, the rich Corfiot stew, very fondly. It was spring and still chilly so we were glad of them.

I also remember losing my temper because I wasn't allowed to take our small daughter into the church of St. Spyridon in a push chair because people are only permitted to approach the sacred relics on foot or knee or shuffling on their bottoms presumably. I normally carried her everywhere on my hip but for some reason it got my goat to be told what I couldn't do by a superstitious priest. My greek father-in-law told me off roundly for dissing other people's beliefs and as I was very fond of him I shut up, but when I thought about it later I had a wine-fueled 'discussion' with him it. He was always grumbling about nuns being 'birds of ill omen' so I thought it was a bit rich criticising me for a momentary irritability with greek Orthodoxy. It all ended happily after more soothing metze and a good bottle of retsina with us both trashing all religious practices... how it takes me back. Thanks Gillian!!