October Postcards from Symi Once upon a time the small island of Symi was parcelled up into a number of small ‘kingdoms’, each centred around an easily defensible position. The Kastro in Chorio, overlooking Yialos, is the most obvious as it lingered on in use into modern times, as has Kokkimides. A sharp eye, however, can see traces of many other ancient fortresses that have long fallen into disuse. This one overlooks Nanou bay, the sea towards Asia Minor and Rhodes, Marathounda bay and a sheltered valley near Megalo Sotiris. If you look carefully you can still see the dry stone walls marking the perimeter and also an interior fortification above the trees. There was a tremendous thunderstorm on 30 September with some quite heavy rain – the first after a long hot summer. We spotted this chap in our road, slurping up from the puddles. We had to move him carefully to a safer spot to reduce the danger of being run over. Just as well we saw him and stopped in time. In the dark he would not have been so lucky. One of the corner cats. Regular followers of my blog over the years will be aware that there is a happy community of cats, cockerels and chickens hanging out by the bins where our dirt road joins the road to Panormitis. All new builds on Symi have to harmonise with the existing neo-classical architecture. Someone took the easy route when making the bull’s eye in the pediment of this modern construction – that is a ceiling boss! Elegant squills along the Pedi road. They came up early this year, in September, and are already starting to fade. The broad strap leaves are forcing their way through. I took this in Rhodes last week. That is the Panagia Skiadeni, the Dodecanese Seaways car ferry, in the background, about to set off with a boat load of day-trippers for Symi. Akandia, the car ferry port, is just beyond the main boatyard. Just add water – a few days after the rain the grass started to come up in all the places where the damp lingered. Although day time temperatures are still in the twenties, humidity is high with heavy dew falls at night and plenty of mist. Spotted in a side road.