|Lesvos, approach to Mytilene|
'Godlike the man who
sits at her side, who
watches and catches
which(softly), tears me
to tatters: nothing is
left of me, each time
I see her,
….tongue numbed; arms, legs
melting, on fire; drum
drumming in ears; head-
lights gone black.'
Good stuff! I always kinda wanted to be a Lesbian.
|Roman floor mosaic, Mytilene|
And the island is exceptionally beautiful. We left Ayvalik, Turkey and two hours later were being whistled over to the customs dock in Mylilene the capitol of Lesvos, to officially check into Greece. The check in was easy and although there is a marina in Mytilene it has little to offer so we went up to the city quay and stern tied as planned. Mytilene is bustling and busy, a college town, a bit of a tourist mecca and an ancient city of renown.
|The quay at Mytilene|
The quay was noisy with the main traffic of the city passing by and the trendiest bars and clubs on the island lining the wharf. But it also has its charms. The architecture is lovely and old mansions line the city front. There are a couple outstanding and rather unusual Orthodox churches and the very usual massive castle with its history of multiple occupations and reincarnations from Hellenic to Persian to Byzantine to Ottoman. People are friendly and gracious and very helpful. For instance, I wanted a spare alternator belt after changing out belts at 1000 hours as recommended by Yanmar. No such animal available, apparently. But the guy in a dive shop near the quay who spoke just a little more English than my very rudimentary Greek put me on the back of his motorcycle and off we went into the hills of the city to a shop where just about every belt for any engine ever made was hanging from the ceiling. This was great fun for all concerned and one more little reason why I've always loved the Greeks.
|Agios Therapon, post baroque Orthodox!|
We rented a car for a day and drove around the NE third of the island just sight seeing. Roads were better than expected and it was a lovely drive. We reconnoitered the town of Molivos (or Mithimna) that we planned on for a next destination. We picked up a young guy hitch hiking who is a PHD candidate at the university and who's English was good enough to tell us about the EU's EuroPark program, obviously his passion. We had good ice cream in the cafes and gyros off the street.
|Gyros over Burger King any day|
Mytilene was pretty nice but Molivos is better. In fact, Molivos may be one of our favorite towns from anywhere, anytime. It's a gorgeous example of a Greek-Turkish-Greek coastal mountain village with another rugged castle at its peak.
|Molivos from the quay|
|Street scenes, Molivos|
There are tourist shops and some low key tourism but in this case it just adds to the variety of the town. There's a historic preservation act in place, we're told, and I hope it stays in effect. The buildings are all native stone, some white washed , and there are many with overhanging Turkish balconies. We've had lovely meals with a great view over the bay at every restaurant and we've walked 'streets' that we might not be able to find again. It's all quite lovely.
|Janet gets her cat 'fix' at Molivos|
|Molivos harbor view from the Castle|
But tomorrow may be the day we move on. The weather rules and it's been blowing pretty much on the nose, the NW, for our next destination, the island of Limnos. Tomorrow the winds are supposed to veer around to the NNE for a day or so and then fill in again stronger from the NW later in the week. So we plan on being outta here at day break for the sixty mile trip to Limnos. Pretty scary actually, we haven't been out of sight of land in quite a while. Wish us a great sail.
|Airstream at Molivos|
Bill & Janet