National Park Eifel, Germany

June, 2018

Since being back in the Netherlands, after living in Canada for many years, I fully enjoy the European culture and nature again. Flying in Europe is pretty cheap and by car you are in no-time in a totally different scenery. Even in the surroundings of my hometown there is plenty to discover. There are many castles, musea and cultural events. Lately, I am trying to improve my walking spirit again by extending every time the amount of kilometers (or miles, as we used to say in Canada). The new hiking shoes are waiting impatiently to get their first exercise. The last pair finally gave up after a 24 kilometer hike through the fabulous Eifel in Germany. I can’t recall I ever visited this beautiful area, just a three hour drive from my home. It’s the perfect spot to go hiking, with endless trails to choose from and overall very well assigned. From high hills to flat land, wild rivers to dreamy lakes; you can find it all. Be sure not to get lost in a village (like we did)………we ended up walking another extra 10 kilometer, as we were confused with the names of the villages! Our hike of four hours, became 7 hours!!! So glad the beer is always cold in Germany and every village has a pub (or two)……….

 

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From our lovely apartment, just outside Einruhr, you could reach the touristic town of Monschau within thirty minutes. Probably, in July overwhelmed with tourists, but now pretty peaceful. Wherever you go in this tiny town, you will hear water streaming. Monschau is famous for its half-timbered houses and the castle high up the hill.

During our short four day stay, we choose two hiking trails: the Waterland route and the Narcissen route (Daffodils route).

We started our first hike from the town of Einruhr around the Obersee, along the Urftsee dam and passing the Paulushof dam to Rurberg. From the Urftsee reservoir you walk via the Eifelsteig back to Einruhr.

Our second day hike started in the small town Höfen and from there we followed the path through the protected area of Perlenbach- and Fuhrtsbachtal. In springtime there seem to be plenty of daffodils all around the trail. Now, we enjoyed all other type of flowers, while the route guided us through the woods, along wild rivers and meadows. Another fabulous hiking day!

On our way back to the Netherlands, we decided to drive via the historic University town Maastricht, situated in the province of Limburg. It has a southern atmosfere and you will hear all kind of languages, while strolling over the famous plazas. Maastricht is more or less on the border with Belgium and Germany. Even Luxembourg is just a short distance away.

In Maastricht you can dream away by the river Maas, admire the impressive Basilica of Saint Servatius and visit the famous bakery ‘ Bisschopsmolen’ or ‘ Bishops Mill’. Here, you will find the oldest working water-mill of the Netherlands and in the store they sell the delicious ‘ Limburgse vlaai ‘. What a perfect way to finish this short outing!

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2017, a busy year in The Achterhoek

Continue reading “2017, a busy year in The Achterhoek”

Fifty shades of Holland

May, 2017

For 18 months I am living now in Holland (The Netherlands) and I experienced all the seasons in different parts of the country. I thought I never could get used again to the dark clouds, the rain and the amount of people living all together on a few m2, but guess what? I did! Mind you, Lochem is no Amsterdam or Rotterdam and traffic cues are a foreign language in this part of the country. Also, here the word neighbour means, that you help each other in times of need. We even have a “neighbour app” invented, after one of us had a severe accident. We use the app to inform each other regarding disasters, as well as suddenly organised parties, or when a rabbit is on the loose……..dsc07166

During the winter months, I get the opportunity to explore some other parts of the Netherlands. After 45 years or so, I return to the province of Friesland or Fryslan, as this province has its own language. Back to the tiny places, where time stood still. We used to go there by boat during the summer holidays, admiring the old “Zuiderzee towns”, strolling around during the day and sleeping on the boat in the picturesque harbours at night. This time, I visit over land in December and enjoy the stillness of the towns of Lemmer, Stavoren and Hindeloopen, without any tourists. Such a rich history you can find here and all the drama these pretty small towns experienced, when “IJsselmeer” was still “Zuiderzee”. So many lives of the fishermen got lost in the rough waters of the sea, years ago.

 

Stavoren is the oldest city of Friesland and got its city rights between 1060 and 1067. During the late Middle Ages, a sandbank formed a blockage for ships entering or leaving the harbour. That meant an end to the prosperous years.

Hindeloopen is famous for its Hindelooper art and costumes. Especially during the 17th and 18th century, the shipping trade thrived in this tiny town.

 

Both these towns are part of the so-called “Eleven City Tour”, an ice skating contest in Friesland, only possible after days of frost (which never happens anymore!).

Lemmer is surrounded by lakes and very popular among water sport and beach lovers. Once, it was a thriving fishing town, with a fleet of 146 ships. One of the most spectacular sites to visit is the ir.D.F.Woudagemaal, a steam-powered pumping station and UNESCO World Heritage Site.  See also: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U9tXJcOj4wg&t=7s

 

Not many foreign tourists will discover these places, hidden in the North-West corner of the Netherlands. Here you get the typical Dutch view; clouds in all kind of shapes, above a green flat land, with sails on the horizon.IMG-20170531-WA0003

I also experience Lochem and Zutphen during the seasons. The grey skies in winter make place for the fresh green of Spring. Plenty of gorgeous days in March, are inviting me out to prepare my garden for the Summer. I work hard on the in-and outside of my cute house and the progress is rewarding.

 

In between duties, I find time to enjoy playing tennis with some great people, go to the fitness and explore my new surroundings. No time for house-sits at the moment! Also, I have to try to find a job. This is a whole new experience, as for the last 20 years or so, my jobs consisted of moving around the world, establish new gardens, paint houses and volunteer. This time, I need to find a real paid job and although everybody is telling me that there are no jobs for people of my age, I am positive I will find something. Hello, I am full of energy, believing in myself and with tons of crazy experiences. In between all these activities, I also have to prepare for the arrival of my two children and one boyfriend in July.  I haven’t seen my daughter for more than 20 months and for a devoted mother like me, that is way too long! When people in the Netherlands complain that their children are living two hours away by car, I feel hurt, but try not to show it. Whenever my daughter mentions that she and her partner might go for a while working a bit North of “Down Under” (Australia), my heart starts pounding…..Maybe there is hope? As a good mother you don’t want to interfere in your children’s life. I myself went to Curacao at the age of 25 and stayed there for a couple of years, without seeing my aging father. So who am I to judge?

While reading a book, I stumbled upon this Quote from the poet Kahlil Gibran; a lesson for all of us………..

Your children are not your children. They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself. They come through you, but not from you. And though they are with you, yet they belong not to you.

You may give them your love, but not your thoughts. For they have their own thoughts. You may house their bodies, but not their souls. For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which you can not visit, not even in your dreams.

You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you. For life goes not backwards nor tarries with yesterday.

 

Sea, rivers, mountains, lakes and caves

September, 2016  Peloponnesus, Greece

Here you can have it all! Starting at the seaside and ending up high in the mountains, at an area, which will be transformed into a ski resort in winter time.

A Greek friend of mine is taking me for a day tour into the backcountry, starting around Akrata and following the extremely quiet and curvy road higher up into the mountains. While driving, we pass the sign of a monastery and looking up, we see beside a new constructed building, also the remains of the old and very small monastery, tucked half into the rocks. Even my Greek friend has never seen this “not well-known” historic site! We decide to drive up and take a look.

The road goes like a snake up and down the mountains. No villages and barely any houses. No tourists with campers and not even a normal Greek car! We are driving towards lake Tsivlos and the river Krathis, on around an 800 meters altitude on the Helmos mountain slopes. The lake was formed in 1912 by a landslide. Its depth sometimes reaches 80 meters, depending on the annual rain rate. There are a few cabins around the lake and I could imagine me staying here for a couple of days, away from everything…….

There are apple and nut trees around the lake and even rodia trees or pomegranate; a very decorative fruit and a symbol for the New Year. It is one of the most ancient of fruits and it has many mythological and biblical meanings; good luck, fertility, love, beauty, a happy marriage and many more…….dsc06306

From here, we go further up the mountain and reach the tiny village of Agridi, with gorgeous views over the Helmos mountains. You can not imagine that you are just a couple of hours away from Athens, the capital of Greece.

Higher up on the mountain, the leave trees change to needle trees and after, when we arrive to the entrance of the “ski slope”, it is a bare landscape with only grazing sheep. By now the temperature dropped to 10 degrees and we are shivering in our shorts!!!

We decide to visit the “Cave of the Lakes”, which is another 17 km. from Kalavrita. This is the only cave in the world where ponds are layered on three separate levels. Here you can not only see stalagmites and stalactites, but also immense boulders, small waterfalls and tiny lakes. The colours are amazing and it is like you enter a fairy tale. I have never seen such an amazing place and so worth to visit! Too bad they do not permit any pictures taken.

After, we return to the valley of Kalavrita, where the temperature is 16 degrees, also a bit colder than last Saturday. Seemingly, the people are prepared with their warm sweaters, coats and long trousers and you realize that winter is around the corner.

My friend explains that he now feels relaxed. I didn’t notice he was stressed, so I asked him why? He then tells me that going down, he could run the car easily into the petrol station, as he was driving on a (nearly) empty tank!!! So grateful he didn’t tell me that before, as it would have been a very long walk from up the mountains down to Kalavrita, in the cold and in shorts!

We go for lunch in the small village of Skepasto, where the owner of the only taverna welcomes us with a big smile. This is way better than one of the touristic restaurants in Kalavrita. Immediately, the fire is on and our paidakia (lamb chops), moshari (beef), xorta (greens), xoriatiki (Greek salad), tzatziki, patates and psomi (bread) are prepared. I forget to take first a picture of my favorite Greek food, as we didn’t eat the whole day and attack our food immediately!

Our last stop in between Kalavrita and Diakofto is close to Zachlorou, where a Greek investor built some very interesting and affordable rental apartments; http://www.montagesuites.gr

Not only the layout is very attractive, with views over the mountains, the bordering river and the monastery Mega Spileo, but also the way the apartments are built. They are all built according to a different movie theme;  inside you will find decorations from famous films and you feel like you enter another world! Rocky, Braveheart, Out of Africa, Eyes Wide Shut, English Patient, you can find it all, complete with a cozy fire-place! I have never seen such a remarkable apartment hotel! It is called “Apartments Montage” and you can not miss it, driving up or down the main road.

Aghia Lavra and the market in Kalavrita, Greece

24th of September, 2016

Again, I am house sitting in Diakofto, Peloponnesus, Greece. This time the sea is warmer, but the days are shorter and the evenings colder than in May. I am not as energetic as in May, tired of renovating my house in The Netherlands and just enjoying some tennis and swimming. Still, there are some excursions on my “to do”list and one of them is “The Monastery Of Aghia Lavra”.

This Saturday, I take the train of 8.45 to Kalavrita again and it is one of those cooler, late summer days with just the right temperature for a hike up the mountain. Once in Kalavrita, I quickly put my sweater on, as it is at least a difference of 5 degrees or more with Diakofto. I can’t remember I have ever been here on a Saturday and it seems the many restaurants are preparing themselves for a very busy day. People started roasting the lamb and pork outside on big barbecues and on one of the main streets a market is taking place, with a variety of produce. The Romani Gypsies are also well represented, selling their clothing ware. One of the clocks of the cathedral is still giving the time of the executions during World War 2.

I decide I just have to buy something again, as a memory of this pretty town and this time it is a string of little goat bells on a chain with the “matia yia kali tixi” (the famous blue eyes for good luck) in between.

After a strong “cafe Elliniko” and a fresh tiropita (cheesepie) in the backpack, it is time to start walking up the road towards the Monastery. I quickly find the road just outside town and walk for a while together with a talkative Greek lady, until she returns home. I am now on my own and the only one I meet is a shepherd with his goats. I wonder where all the tourists are, as I even don’t see any buses or other cars. Looking down the hill, you see the valley of Kalavrita, with on the other side the tall cross of the Memorial, which I visited in May. The walk goes steep up the mountain and takes at least one hour. I have a short break, as it is quite a climb and finally arrive at around 12.30, while the Monastery closes at 1.00 for the two-hour siesta. So just on time!

One of the monks is sitting at the entrance of the Monastery, welcoming the people to the church and museum. The other part of the building is where the monks are living and no visitors are allowed there. Also, once inside, you can not take any pictures. I have a little chat with this very nice man and he was surprised that I walked on my own up the mountain. Not many people come to visit by foot he tells me and definitely no ladies on their own!

The monastery has a long history. It played a very important part in the Greek Revolution for Independence against the Turks. It is right here that the Archbishop “Paleon Patron” Germanos raises the Holy Labarum, the very first flag of the Greek Nation, in March 1821.

In 1826, Ibrahim Pasha set the Monastery ablaze. Only the “Katholikon”, the historical church, escapes full destruction. All the other buildings are burned down.

Another tragic event takes place in 1943, when the German occupation forces kill all the monks they can find, one day after the massacre in Kalavrita. The killings are taken place right under the huge plane tree, towering above the front yard.

The church is very small, but impressive with all its icons, lanterns and wall paintings.

Also the museum is tiny, but surprisingly full with interesting artifacts, Holy vestments and books, dating back to the 11th and 14th century.

By now it is 1.00 p.m. and siesta time for the monks. I wander around for a while in the garden and slowly start walking back down the mountain, which is way easier than going up. This time it only takes me around 45 minutes to reach Kalavrita. I see the train arriving at the station and decide to change my ticket and leave Kalavrita earlier than planned. This way, I can make a stop at Zachlarou, where I would like to have lunch in my favorite taverna from last time. As soon as I arrive, the owner comes towards me. He remembers me from last time! I wish I could go back many more times, but this time I had to pay the full fee for the train (19 euro’s) and that is pretty pricy.

Other hikers are joining me and we all go back down the gorge, with the last train of the day.

Vibrant Zutphen; another Hanse town

September, 2016, The Netherlands

A 15 minute car drive over a road through the forests and farmland,  brings me from my home in Lochem to Zutphen,  a town situated at the confluence of the rivers IJssel and Berkel. Until now, I only visited Zutphen two or three times, but for sure I will return to this town, full of culture and history, many more times in the future. .

Founded in the 11th century as Zuidveen (Southern peat bog). In 1312 it was fortified and became a member of the Hanseatic League. Zutphen was occupied by the French, the Spanish and during WW2 by the Germans.

There are still quite some medieval fortifications like the Nieuwe stadspoort (gate), the Drogenapstoren (tower) and the ruined Berkel gate. In the St.Walburga’s church you can find the Public Library. Definitely worth a visit. If I would live here, I probably would visit the library a few times a week! Other places of interest are The Wine House Tower, the Town Hall and the Butter and Meat Halls (Markets).

If you like shopping, there is a variety of stores with second hand or new stuff and sometimes funny displays in the windows!

During the Heritage days, the second weekend in September, when many monuments open their doors in the Netherlands (free of charge), I got just a glimpse of a few of those historic buildings.

As in Lochem, also here you can go for a tour with a “whisper boat” along the river Berkel. It gives you a totally different view on the town and it is a nice break after a few hours of hiking!

Zutphen also organizes many festivities. From now on I have to keep my eye on their cultural website and newspaper. One of those events was the  ”Art along the IJssel” and ”Brocante Market”. It took place on the last weekend of August and the temperature was good enough to give the children (and  one grandfather) some fun time in the fountain!

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I gave myself a day off to discover a bit more of this vibrant town. A variety of Art was displayed along the river, from paintings and ceramics to glass objects and pictures. From the river you walked along the Brocante stalls into town. There was music, mostly French tunes and people filled the many terraces around the Wine House Tower and the inner streets.

I used the day to take pictures instead of buying things. My house doesn’t need more decorations, so the camera let me concentrate on other things……..

 

 

 

Painting the summer away

August 2016, Lochem, The Netherlands

My first summer in the Netherlands since many years and no long, warm summer nights, filled with mosquitos, as in Canada. The nights are or wet or too cold. The good thing is that you really enjoy those few occasions, when you are sipping your wine on the patio and constantly telling each other what a beautiful night it is!DSC05936

My garden gave me a surprise, when I noticed that the little plant, which suddenly appeared was not a cucumber nor a courgette, but a pumpkin! By now, my whole back garden is filled with pumpkins……..

I do miss my animals, after taking care for so many dogs and cats, goats and ducks and whatever else for the last two years. Though my neighbour cats are regular visitors and sometimes I wonder if they choose my house as theirs and their own house just as a favorite restaurant.

 

Though there have been enough days to enjoy the outdoor life, it seems that in the Netherlands sometimes summer starts, when school starts again……..We are amidst a heat wave and it is the end of august.

My new, old house is getting the colours it deserves. All my little treasures from a lifetime travelling and the cherished memories from the past are giving it the appeal I was looking for. I even started using my own pictures as decor. Waking up with the stunning sunset of Diakofto, Greece and the stillness of Lake Louise, Alberta, Canada is giving my day a good start!

I am literally painting the summer away. A job, which will take months before it is finished, but to see the improvement is very rewarding.

Still, now and then I get my walking shoes on and try to catch some shots of the inviting nature of Lochem and surroundings.

From my home, I cross the street and walk into the cornfields, along the river and into the woods, passing a windmill or an old farmhouse.

Going in another direction, I can easily walk to the old centre of town, where tourists are filling the patios, as soon as one sunray breaks the sky. Lochem is a town, but it has a village atmosphere. It is surrounded by a river and a canal and filled with cycling and walking paths. Around Lochem, plenty of old mansions and castles are attracting many Dutch and foreign visitors.

Hopefully next year, I will have more time to discover everything the area has to offer. For now, we combine work with pleasure, as during the summer months many festivities are organized, not only in Lochem, but also in many of the villages around. After Canada, where drinking alcohol is not allowed “on the street”, it is great to be back in a country with different rules!

 

Sunrise and sunset in Diakofto, Greece

June, 20016

Sometimes no words can express a moment. It is on those moments, that you better just watch, enjoy and indulge the beauty of nature………

 

 

 

 

The sound of water and goat bells

The 23rd of May 2016, Mega Spileo, Greece

One of my last outings in Diakofto is a visit to the Monastery Mega Spileo, tucked away in the rocks on the way to Kalavrita. For a visit you can take the car or a bus, but I decide the take once more the train towards Kalavrita and getting off earlier, in Zachlorou. It is an early Tuesday morning and this time no screaming school children, but  just a handful of tourists, all going to Kalavrita. One more time I can enjoy the great scenery and I even leave my camera in my bag and relax. In Zachlorou only some locals and two German tourists are leaving the train. The two Germans are immediately starting to walk back to Diakofto along the railway and I start looking for the path, which will bring me finally to the Monastery. The entrance of the path is just beside one of the tavernas, where I will end up on the way back.

This is not a hike for people, who are not very mobile! Also, you better have your walking shoes on! The first part is like a goat trail. That is also the only thing you hear;  goat bells! Nothing else. Oh….and the sound of water running. Always……

The path is not marked very well. You have to look for a red arrow or a blue/green triangle. At a certain point there is a choice between three trails. Nowhere a coloured arrow or other mark! I choose to follow the goatshit and that turned out to be the right choice. Being just on my own in the mountains felt amazing. I only realized that if I would fall and break a leg, nobody could hear my screams.

Once up on the main road, I walk to the entrance of the Monastery, but before climbing up the next hill, I treat myself on a frappe and a tiropitakia (well, tiropita, so huge) in the only restaurant/cafeteria there is. Very touristic, as all the buses park here, but with an amazing view over the mountains.DSC05575

Mega Spileo is built against the rocks, with a stunning view. The original building has been destroyed many times before by fires (in 1400, 1640 and 1934) and later by the Germans, during the second WW, who killed all the monks and visitors and threw them of the cliffs. Only a few escaped and could hide with some of the valuable treasures of the church.

Mega Spileo is supposed to be the oldest Monastery of Greece, originally from 362 AD. It is built at a height of 924 mt and it is told that the Icon of the Virgin Mary was found in a hole in the rocks by a shepherdess. Therefore, Mega Spileo is known as a pilgrimage for not only the Greek people, as well as many foreigners. The museum, where a very old monk is supervising today, contains many valuable icons, manuscripts and other treasures. In the 17th century church you will see frescoes and a mosaic floor and a bronze door.

After my visit to the inside of the Monastery, I stroll around the gardens and discover a small graveyard at the far end of the rocks. There is nobody here and I don’t even know if I am allowed at this part of the grounds of Mega Spileo. Here the view is amazing and I sit for a while taking it all in.

Around 12.30 I return back, down the mountain to Kato Zachlorou, but first visit the little chapel at the side of the road.

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Going down is even more difficult, as at times the pebbles make the trail slippery. Once back in Zachlorou, I stroll around in this small mountain village and just enjoy the scenery and the smell of the herbs. On one of the back streets, I encounter a very big snake, but although my camera is hanging around my neck, I am too slow or the snake too fast, to take a picture.

It was time to have lunch. There are a few tavernas in front of the train station and I choose to sit at taverne “Zachlorou” right above the small waterfall and overseeing the bridge. The sound of the water is relaxing and the raki, the owner gives me as a welcome drink, even more! I am glad I took the early train, as now I have time enough to enjoy a late lunch. I am the only guest at this time, but the barbecue is started and soon the home-made “loukaniko” (Greek sausage) is filling the air with a delicious smell. I never had such a tasty Xoriatiki (Greek salad) in all the 10 years I lived in Greece. A few more customers are arriving and the children of the owner of the taverna are brought home from school by taxi, as there is no school bus which goes to this tiny village.

I sit here for two hours and just loving it. Dogs and cats around me and later the German tourists arrive back for a quick-lunch. Adonis and Pollie Triantafillo, the owners of the taverna, let us have a peek in a box…….so cute……..one day old kittens!

The train to Kalavrita is passing by and it is the same train which will pick us up on the way back. So we relax a little bit more, while sipping some more tasty Greek wine. What a gorgeous day!

 

 

 

 

Kalavrita, a mixture of beauty and sadness

May 2016

The train ride from Diakofto to Kalavrita is spectacular. It takes about an hour to go up the mountain and until Zachlorou we are going through the Vouraikos Gorge with impressive views and stunning rides over ridges and through tunnels. Last time, I walked along the train track back to Diakofto. This time I take the train and go all the way up to Kalavrita, which is situated on the banks of the Vouraikos river at Mount Chelmos. On the way up, the train is fully booked with 40 school children, screaming  “wows” the whole journey. It is hard to make nice pictures, sitting in the front wagon with the windows closed.  There are signs everywhere that you are not allowed to open the windows, as the air conditioning is on. On the way back I suddenly noticed that we all have an assigned seat and mine is in the last wagon, according to my ticket. We are with three people and immediately we open up the windows, trying to get some nice shots, while hanging out of the train. You do have to watch carefully, when the train is entering a tunnel or going over a bridge, as the track is very narrow and you could end up beheaded or without a camera!

I visited Kalavrita before, but always in winter time and always for an outing in the snow. I have always known the story about the terrible suffering of the people here, during the Second World War. This time I want to know more about the history of this sad story, which is considered one of the cruelest atrocities of the WW2 in Europe.  I will visit the Holocaust Museum in Kalavrita and later the monument on the hill of Kapi ridge.DSC05350

At the end of 1943, 81 German soldiers, led by Hauptmann Johannes Schober, were captured by Greek Partisans near Kerpini village. Four Germans were killed on the spot and three were taken to the hospital at Kalavrita, but later shot by furious Partisans. All the others were treated as prisoners of war. Two prisoners escaped and raised the alarm. On December the 8th, the German troops destroyed the villages Kerpini and Pogi and killed their male population. Soon after this took place, the Greek resistance executed the German prisoners. During the following days, German troops entered Kalavrita to look for the Greek resistance soldiers. Although the villagers affirmed them that the Greek forces had left, the Nazi troops ordered on the 13th of December 1943 all the residents to the school building. They separated men and boys from the women. All the male residents of Kalavrita, aged 13 years and older then had to gather in a field on Kapi hill and they were gunned down. From the 468 people, 13 survived. After the Massacre of Kalavrita, the German troops burned down the town and the next day also the Monastery of Agia Lavra, birthplace of the Greek War of Independence.

The Cathedral in Kalavrita was later rebuilt, but the left clock remains stopped at the time, when the crime began; at 14.34 p.m.DSC05367

In total more than 1200 civilians were killed in Kalavrita and it’s neighbouring villages and around 1000 houses were looted and burned down.

The Monastery of Mega Spileo, around 10 km outside of Kalavrita, was burnt by the German Nazis and all 22 monks and staff members were killed and their bodies were thrown over the cliffs.

The Holocaust museum is small, but very impressive and informative. Interviews, with the survivors of the Massacre, can be seen on a television screen. Various photographs of the people of this town, taken during special occasions, are displayed. Personal items of the fallen and German objects are also demonstrated.

The last room has one big wall covered with pictures of the fallen and I am standing there looking at all those faces, who once lived peacefully in this tiny town in the mountains. A Greek man, who came to visit for the first time, is looking for a relative who was among the fallen. One of the staff members helps him finding the picture which belongs to the name.DSC05347

After my visit to the museum I walk out of town up to Kapi Hill, from where an enormous cross is overlooking the valley of Kalavrita. Underneath are the monuments with the names and ages engraved of the men and boys killed on the 13th of December, 1943.

I am the only visitor at his moment and it a beautiful sunny day. I sit myself down at the bottom of the cross and look over the valley and the  mountains and stay for quite a while………It is difficult to imagine all what happened here, on this very spot, on the 13th of December 1943.