Symi Dream

Living on a Greek island

A Greek island blog from Symi in the Dodecanese islands of Greece. "James’s great talent lies in his careful observation of the absurd and the amusing, the dramas and the difficulties..." Anne Zouroudi.

Symi Dream - Living on a Greek island

The fall of the machine

The fall of the machine

Picture it: I’m sitting on the sofa reading a very entertaining book about Andrew Lloyd Webber (don’t ask) when all of a sudden I become aware that a heavy truck is passing by the house. ‘Must be a concert mixer lorry,’ I think. A little while later I realise that the road outside our house is too narrow for such a vehicle. ‘Must be Lefteris and his dumper truck.’ I consider this idea as it’s more entertaining the Lord Lloyd Webber, and then wonder why Lefteris has stopped his truck right outside our door and isn’t moving on. ‘Perhaps he is delivering something over the road,’ I think. After a few minutes, I come to realise that the sound is actually coming from within the house and I pop into the laundry room to see where the earth trembling noise is coming from.

Windy weather

Windy weather

I find Neil there, interrupted from his revision by the sound. We both look at the washing machine and then shout across to each other, ‘It’s the washing machine!’

‘What?’

‘I said…’

But we leave it alone as it’s not actually smoking or steaming or moving around the room, but it is being worryingly loud. I realise later that we have just witnessed its final final rinse and spin. Something’s gone for good, and €300.00 worth of machine is finally cycling itself off to washing machine heaven. Mind you, it was 13 years old, so you can’t complain. It had a good run, and it was a Greek make Pitsos, so bravo to them for building such a reliable home appliance.

Windy weather

Windy weather

This meant that we then had to buy another one and, with some advice from the lady who knows about such things, Jenine Olive Tree, I ordered one from the Greek equivalent of Dixons, online, for €250.00. That miffed her a bit as she only recently bought exactly the same model for a little bit more; ours was now in a sale and also comes with free delivery. When that will be is another matter and, in the meantime, there’s the old one to get rid of. An email to the Dimos will let me know how this should be done, we’re not going down the ‘dump it over a cliff’ route. Meanwhile, there’s still the washing to do.

Day trippers and visitors

Day trippers and visitors

Which is how I found myself at the laundry sink on a blowy Thursday morning. Luckily, mother had left some handy hand wash behind when she left last year, so I was able to use that. There’s something very therapeutic about manually washing t-shirts and under-things; it gives you time to think. Mind you, I did have ‘Welcome to the Machine’ going around in my head like a tumble dryer for half an hour as I washed and wrung, agitated clothes (by talking about Brexit), rinsed and wrung again, and hung out the essentials. The pile went down quite quickly until Neil came home from his aerobics and gym session and dumped his gym clothes on it. There’s still a lot to do, but plenty of time as we’re not expecting the new machine for a couple of weeks.

Day trippers and visitors

Day trippers and visitors

Meanwhile (again), the wind was up, and the sea was choppy, choppier than it looks in the quick snaps I took for today’s blog, so the washing has to dry inside. Poor old Jack is weathering the warm wind, though, and has taken up his usual place on his bench outside in the courtyard. He was sick overnight on Wednesday and had also cut his ear again, so he wasn’t in the best of moods. I’ve seen him drinking lots of water and eating only a little, so at least he’s doing that. We’re keeping an eye on him as we eagerly await the outcome of my first hand wash in 14 years. Will it be scented with the aroma of spring flowers from an Alpine valley? Or will it smell like it did when it went in the bowl? Oh, I can’t wait.

By the way, there’s a post coming up tomorrow, for the weekend, about the work of one of the charities that’s currently operating to help refugees and others on Symi, and other islands. Make sure you tune in to check it out.