Tuesday 5 December 2023

November Village Life.

 November in Our Village

November in our village for me tends to be a rather quiet one. The clocks have gone back, the mornings start earlier and the evenings draw in quickly with longer nights ahead, my whole sleeping pattern changes as we try to make use of these daylight hours. 

November started mild with midday temperatures reaching 23c, sun shining gracing us with her warmth and clear blue skies. Certainly we both made the most of this beautiful weather being perfect for Ari (hubby) as he painted the bathroom, lounge area and my ceramic pots, whilst I took the opportunity for a good house deep clean and decluttering.  Curtains washed, windows cleaned and rugs aired for the forthcoming Winter months very soon to arrive.  The Summer wardrobe clothes all washed and packed away until late April and the heavier clothes, jumpers, leggings, jeans etc now ready and waiting to be worn when the colder days would arrive.  Actually we didn't have to wait too long as the evenings became cooler and damper, typical Corfu weather then for November.  Still not cold enough though for the log fire just a few hours each evening of the air con on a warm mode was pleasant.  Doors and windows remained open most days to keep our little house well ventilated to help with the general dampness up here. And the duvet now on the bed too.

We then moved onto several rainy days, thunder and lots of lighning storms and yes, you guessed it Power Cuts!!!  As we do not have piped gas on the island if you do choose to cook with gas then this is bottled gas.  Personally I do not like it, we only have an electric hob and oven. Over the years I have learnt always to have plenty of bread, feta cheese and salad for such days when the power could be off for only a few hours or even a whole day until the electricity company detects the source and repairs.  Often these cuts are due to fallen trees or the actual poles supplying the electric plunging us into darkness.  Another tip always have plenty of candles around the house.

After the rain and some more warmer days, Ari went foraging for 'Horta' Wild Greens (you can read about this on an earlier post). A perfect and healthy dish and as I hate to waste my old bread I serve with Skordalia, a garlic dip made either with leftover bread or potatoes or a combination of both. I also give any leftover bread to a Greek lady up in the village which she uses for her chicken's feed and in return often provides us with lovely fresh free range eggs when they are laying as several times yearly they don't.

Our 1st round of new potataoes from the garden are starting to appear, again not to waster anything, we use the eyes of any old potatoes and plant back in the soil.

Lettuces are also coming through nicely, with seeds brought over from some lovely guests whom have become friends over the years of visiting our island, however due to the rain, damp and humidity you do need to do a snail run every few days as this weather brings them creeping slowly up from the earth and trying to munch on the new lettuce leaves.  Tryng to be as Eco Friendly as possible, where the garden is concerned, we don't use pellets or pesticedes instead this is one of Aris' jobs as he goes out when the sun drops and removes them and again early morning too. Do you know snails feature in several dishes around the World?  Not for me though and I have tried!!

The fallen Autumn leaves are collected dried in the sun and mulched back into the soil too.

The last of the peppers were dried but wow they have rather a kick, now in the feezer to use in soups and stews over the Winter.

Mid November some fragrant Narcissus flowers popped into a few of my flower pots outside, so pretty to see flowers in the garden.

The Rag & Bone man known here as a Paleogeis, arrived down our little lane whilst we were outside relaxing and enjoying another sunny midday glass of wine, he took away an old fridge and oven that had been an awful garden feature for quite a few months.  It is a shame more people don't use this free service rather than just dumping their stuff by the village green bins. The Paleogeis are up and around the villages and the island in their open back trucks often,  shouting over their loudspeakers: Paleogeis, Paleogeis. Income for them and free garbage removal for us!!

A few days later on another sunny lunchtime along came a few goats too.  Now whilst it is lovely to see this rural side of life here, goats will eat almost anything.  We have a gated patio/garden area so we escaped their rampage but the land across our lane saw them happily and greedily munching through the owners grass and anything else they liked in her garden. Our cats sat and watched as not sure they had seen a goat before.

As we reached the last week of the month, the 1st snow fell on our highest mountain Pantokrator which stands at 906 metres high. (Photo provided via a Corfu Forum). There was also snowfall opposite on the heights of the Albania mountains, it doees look so pretty however when the wind blows this way the temperatures drop, as they did for various evening when it was just 3c during the night. 

The last day of the month Easyjet announced that they had more aircrafts based at Birmingham providing more direct flights from May 2024 into Corfu.  The Corfu airport was closed for scheduled runway updates and will reopen on 5th December.  There are no direct flights from Europe and other hubs onto the island from mid November to late March and tourism is very low key during this time.  There are normally 5 domestic flights in from Athens which offers anyone wishing to visit for a holiday, visit friends, family etc and there are always plenty of flights from around the World into Athens so a short 40 minute flight then from Athens to Corfu provides the way to visit during the 'off season', along with ferries via the mainland too.

Now I am looking forward to December however I am not putting any Christmas decorations up until a few days before as here, despite seeing on Greek TV the 1st advert this year, as we tend to keep the deorations up until Epiphany being 6th Januaury when the priest will come to bless the house with Holy water.

Thank you for reading about my Life in a Hillside Corfu Village, if you are thinking of moving here or retire hopefully providing you via my blogs an insight to daily life to consider.

If you are planning to visit in 2024 then you can also find me on www.corfuselections.com  I will always be happy to assist you with holiday related questions and services here in the North West Corner of our island of Corfu.

You can follow me too via Facebook: Corfu Selections and Instagram. Click on icons via my website.

Lesley Life in a Corfu Village

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