My thanks to John Burkitt for sending in these photographs. I have only just got round to opening his email.
some photos attached of work on the house taken in late September/early October……from the sea off Kalimitsi beach and from paths going past the house. looked reasonably busy.
So glad work in progress,.
I am so glad to see obvious work being done. I hope it is completed soon.
When I talked with the Benaki Museum in May, they told me that once work commenced the estimated time of completion would be 18 months. I thought that was too optimistic at the time, considering the condition of the house. People in Kardamyli who had worked in the house and knew Paddy ( “Kir Michalis” as they call him, “kir” means Mr. ) were worried about the plumbing which goes right under the beautiful pebbled front yard, that I now see covered up in Mr. Burkitt’s pictures. They were afraid that it would be destroyed. I even met a woman that was leaving the beach one afternoon, whose father went fishing with Paddy and she had been in the house several times, as a child. She was one of the families from Proastio, who spent all summer camping on the beach of Kalamitsi (it is mentioned in Mrs. Cooper’s book). She picked up a pebble from the beach and said “The pebbles Kir Mihalis used are like this one. They are called “boukia”.” I had never heard that word before. The locals said that the roof and the exterior will be easily restored. But they feared the water pipes would be blocked by the roots of the trees. I was really discouraged then. When I left Kalamitsi in mid August, they were putting up the ISO boxes for the workers. Now that I saw Mr. Burkitt’s pictures, my hopes went up. I got so excited, my eyes filled with tears. Let’s hope all goes as planned. I will keep my fingers crossed!
Patrick Leigh Fermor left his house to the Greeks. He knew, better than anyone, how the Greeks are, with all their good and bad, yet he made that decision. The best tribute to him would be to respect his wishes and leave the Greeks alone. They have their own way of impressing the world in the end, against the odds. Paddy knew that and, I guess, that’s one of the things he loved in them.
Thank you Eirini for your timely comment …….he left the house to the Benaki and this must be kept in mind and respected while following progress with great interest.
Busy in the Greek sense perhaps. Reminds me of the American visitor to a small Greek village who sits at the village cafe and asks a local what the Greek word is for “manyana” – to which the old man replies “well it never gets as hectic as that around here”!