Blog launched: Sept 1, 2010

Saturday, December 7, 2019

Tabanus sudeticus

302_7290 [Tabanus sudeticus]

Once upon a time
three of us were shooting wild flowers on a mountain. Suddenly, a swarm of Tabanus sudeticus started flying over our heads. Their buzz was frightening. Someone recognized the dangerous “flying objects” and shouted “They’re Tabanus! Get into the car”! All of us rushed into the car. I sat at the driver’s seat but the driver’s window was open. One of the insects landed on the door only a few inches away from my left shoulder. I remained still, almost petrified but the insect looked at me with a big green eye and said: “Don’t be afraid. I come in peace. Just take a picture of me and I’ll go.” I did. Fortunately, it kept its promise and we went on shooting happily ever after. [This starts and ends like a fairy tale but it's a true story!]

Tabanus sudeticus is a giant horsefly (body length about 25 mm) that bites painfully.

Photographed on Mt. Paggeo on June 05, 2010

Saturday, November 30, 2019

Saturday, November 23, 2019

Crocus cartwrightianus

803_5659 [Crocus cartwrightianus]

This crocus, found in Central Greece and Crete, flowers from October to December and grows up to 5 centimeters in diameter. It is widely considered to be the direct ancestor of Crocus sativus [cultivated for saffron].
Although it usually comes in lilac, we sometimes see it in white.

See picture below.

803_5666 [Crocus cartwrightianus - Albus]

Both pictures were taken on Mt. Hymittos on November 11, 2019 

Saturday, November 16, 2019

Majestic trees 2

Cercis siliquastrum
803_1349 [Cercis siliquastrum]

Cercis siliquastrum is another notable example of majestic trees in the area of the Holy Trinity [see previous post].
It might not be as big as Quercus but it is admittedly more colorful with its beautiful flowers. [See below.] 

803_1342 [Cercis siliquastrum]

 This tree is found in the wild but it is also cultivated for its beautiful flowers.

Both pictures were photographed on Mt. Parnitha on April 12, 2018

Please click on the pictures for a better view.

Saturday, November 9, 2019

Majestic trees

Quercus robur
803_1353 [Quercus robur]

In the area around the church of The Holy Trinity shown in the previous post
there are majestic trees that contribute to the beauty of the scenery.
Quercus robur above is a notable example.  

Focus on the trunk of the same tree
803_1356 [Quercus robur]

The trunk of Oaks like this, according to Wikipedia, can get as much as 12m in circumference! Trees of that size can be found in Great Britain, Latvia and elsewhere in Europe. They also seem to hold a record in longevity since they are believed to live for centuries. According to the same source “Two individuals of notable longevity are the Stelmužė Oak in Lithuania and the Granit Oak in Bulgaria, which are believed to be more than 1500 years old, possibly making them the oldest oaks in Europe”. 

  Both pictures were photographed on Mt. Parnitha on April 12, 2018

Please click on the pictures for a better view.

Saturday, October 26, 2019

The Holy Trinity Chapel

801_9506 [Holy Trinity Chapel]

This beautiful little chapel, found at a height of 600 meters on Mt Parnitha, is located in an environmentally privileged area and constitutes a highlight of Ippokrateios Politeia: A community of 1000 people lives permanently there in more than 600 houses. This chapel occasionally hosts under its roof believers from this community and certainly constitutes a highlight for crowds of visitors who come here in search of natural beauty.

The interior

801_9525 [Holy Trinity, the interior]

IMHO, the view of the interior is rather disappointing. It stands between simplicity and … lack of interest. It would be nice, I think, to see some changes for the better some time.

A structure nearby

801_9511 [Holy Trinity, a structure nearby]

Opposite the entrance to the chapel - only a few meters away - one can see an elegant little structure that offers fresh water to the passers-by. If close enough, they can read an inscription on its face that reads:


It’s a Greek phrase that can be read from left to right or from right to left and means:
“Wash off your sins. Don't wash your face only”.

All photographed on Mt. Parnitha on April 30, 2015

Please click on the pictures for a better view.


Saturday, October 19, 2019

Sternbergia lutea

803_5617 [Sternbergia lutea]

Photographed on Mt. Hymittos on October 16, 2019

301_3969 [Sternbergia lutea]

Photographed at Grammatiko on October 15, 2008

Saturday, October 12, 2019

Beauty in Simplicity

IMG_5633 [Beauty in Simplicity]

This little chapel is dedicated to St. Nicholas who is considered by the Greeks to be the patron saint of all seamen. It stands on a cliff near the port of Rafina and overlooks all ships moving in and out day and night.
See picture below.

Photographed at Rafina on May 29, 2018

[Rafina - Myconos!]

Photographed at Rafina on August 21, 2016