Archives for posts with tag: GREECE

I am very excited to announce my London book launch. My Greek Island Home is being published in the UK by Clearview Books. Next Wednesday night, April 30th Nikki Tibbles, Wild at Heart, Domus Nova and Clearview Books will be hosting a launch party at Nikki Tibbles, Wild at Heart. So excited!

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At this time of year the village is quiet. Our village friends tend to stay indoors. It’s not at all surprising as the weather the last few days has been extremely wet. I felt the need to go back into my archives to remind myself of village life in June. Here are some of my friends. Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One of the best things I have experienced on the Greek Island of Lesvos is community living. Living in London was great and although I was connected with my really special friends I hadn’t felt the strong connection that comes with living in a close knit community. There is a special feeling you get, a safe feeling, a feeling of belonging. On Sunday December 15 I will be appearing at 8.40 on channel 7’s Weekend Sunrise and will be sharing my experiences of living in a community with Monique  Wright and Andrew O’Keefe. Take a look.

MY GREEK ISLAND HOME A

Greeted by a village friend and home made cheese by our neighbour Ralitza from my book MY GREEK ISLAND HOME by CLAIRE LLOYD published by PENGUIN LANTERN

MY GREEK ISLAND HOME COMMUNITY B

Wandering around the village from my book MY GREEK ISLAND HOME by CLAIRE LLOYD published by PENGUIN LANTERN

MY GREEK ISLAND HOME D

There is always something to chat about in the platia from my book MY GREEK ISLAND HOME by CLAIRE LLOYD published by PENGUIN LANTERN

MY GREEK ISLAND HOME F

 

Cafe society from my book  published by MY GREEK ISLAND HOME by published by PENGUIN LANTERN

MY GREEK ISLAND HOME E

Stratos always has a friendly smile and an interesting tale to tell from my book MY GREEK ISLAND HOME by CLAIRE LLOYD published by PENGUIN LANTERN

MY GREEK ISLAND HOME COMMUNITY C

The beautiful faces from my book MY GREEK ISLAND HOME by CLAIRE LLOYD published by PENGUIN LANTERN

 

 

Matthew knows the small village streets on our GREEK ISLAND HOME like the back of his hand and I think he has now become familiar with every flowering rose bush too. I don’t know how people manage to grow fabulous roses but it seems we are the only people in the village incapable of it. Apparently they just grow there is nothing special we need to do and of course everyone has these flowering beauties in their garden. Everyone but us! But I need not fret as I am lucky enough to have  roses picked for me from someone else’s abundnt crop. We do have a small amount of fruit trees providing us with seasonal delights. A quince tree is the first tree growing as you enter our small garden and although our annual crop seems to be far less than others in the village there is still something that can be used in a chicken staffado . There is also a small plum tree, set in the middle of our yard and an olive, fig and an almond tree too. These were not planted by us and were well established when we arrived probably planted by the wife of the last inhabitant, a priest. She was said to have had green fingers. There is an abundance seasonal fruit and veggies in the village and we are very lucky to receive bags of goodies which we usually find hanging from our front gate. This is always tricky as you don’t know which one of our many generous village friends has left it. Recently we received a bag filled to the brim with persimmons a fruit I must admit to never have eaten before. I really enjoyed this fleshy fruit and found myself unable to stop eating them once I started. I also used them in salads a delicious addition, they taste divine and add wonderful colour. We still have not worked out who left this gift but we are once again truly greatful.

FLOWERS Beautiful delicate pink roses from someone else’s garden copyright CLAIRE LLOYD

FRUIT Persimmons a gift from a village friend copyright CLAIRE LLOYD

There are always surprises behind the closed village doors. My daily dog walking takes me past many uninhabited and also crumbling houses, they are thought provoking.  Past lives stir my imagination and my curiosity pushes me towards any small opening for a peek. Just a glimpse is enough, but the opportunity to step over the threshold is never turned down. This particular house was a gem it had been left almost untouched. It was a friends mothers house and we were invited to tread the grapes from their annual harvest. They said it was important that we came as they wanted the grapes to be trodden by couples who loved each other. This would add to the quality of the wine. Mmmm……… hope we didn’t let the side down. The grapes were in plastic baby baths in the garden and Matthew and I took off our shoes, washed our feet and started treading. I was taking photos at the same time so relied on Matthew to hold me upright. The sensation of treading grapes is a rather wonderful one. I loved the feeling of the soft skins between my toes and the feeling of determination I  took on to squish every single grape to liquid. I took my camera around the house and loved the way it had remained after the death of my friends mother. The only real difference were the bottles of wine being stored  from previous years. The house was now a cellar.

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Patterns of lace panels hang in front of windows and old tin trays sit on top of fabric runners. copyright CLAIRE LLOYD 

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Tin trays rest against the wall, it seems they have not been moved for years and years. copyright CLAIRE LLOYD 

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The old newspaper gives us a sense of time. I love the two patterns chosen to sit side by side each other on this wall. copyright CLAIRE LLOYD 

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A fabulous wooden panelled ceiling and a random piece of lace hang from a nail. copyright CLAIRE LLOYD 

PORTRAIT OF A GREEK VILLAGE HOUSE

This is my kind of lighting, I love the single clear bulb hanging from the twisted cord. I particularly love the connection between the cord and the bulb and the cord and the ceiling fitting. Grapes trodden by previous lovers lay waiting to be drunk. copyright CLAIRE LLOYD 

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Chairs stacked up until next time. An embroidered hand made purse hangs open, when it was last used. copyright CLAIRE LLOYD 

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Rotting shutters let in diffused afternoon light. I covert a curtain hook which is attached to the wooden window surrounds. copyright CLAIRE LLOYD 

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A sad, single fallen curtain and some newer hats on the hat rack, reminding us that people still pass by. copyright CLAIRE LLOYD 

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Patterns of slowly disintegrating fabric and paper. copyright CLAIRE LLOYD 

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Electricity was not essential in this household. copyright CLAIRE LLOYD 

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You can feel the bannister in your hand and the photos give you faces to the story you have built up in your mind. copyright CLAIRE LLOYD 

 

Last night I was interviewed by Serene  Mastrianni from RADIO 2 WOMAN in America. Thanks Serene. Although the telephone line from here was not great , I struggled a bit to hear the questions however, I enjoyed speaking with Serene about My Greek Island Home, very much. You can hear the interview by clicking here RADIO 2 WOMAN. My Greek Island Home is available in America from amazon.com, Antropologie US, amazon.co.uk.  This shot was taken in Kithira by Vittorio Mariani. Thanks Vittorio.

Last week on My Greek Island Home I did a portrait shoot with my beautiful friend Maria and her two handsome boys. It was shot not far from home at the end of a perfect Greek summer day.

I’m loving the summer on My Greek Island Home and the shadows created by the abundance of harsh sunlight. There are patterns everywhere, transforming static surfaces into moving images.

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We have gone from Our Greek Island Home on a Greek Island holiday. No dog walking, kitten feeding or animal rescue for a week! We are on the island of Kithira, a beautiful island between Crete and main land Greece and it is bliss. Here is a taste of what touches our senses every day. Now I will jump back into the crystal waters and swim my heart out. Happy summer holidays

 

 

 

 

Living on a Greek Island has opened our eyes to so many new things. We are privileged to be living our life here. We have met wonderful people and been embraced by our village community. The landscape that surrounds us is spectacular. When we arrived we never imagined the number of cats and dogs that needed help. There are some people on the island doing incredible work with animal rescue and we try to help when we can. Matthew volunteered for 1.5 years at the wildlife rescue centre, which has now closed. We have taken on kittens, cats, puppies and dogs, something I would never have imagined myself doing when I lived a city life in London. All of the animals we rescue are unique and they all have their own special place in our hearts.We do what we can to re home them and to date, with the help of our friends, we have re homed 8 dogs and many cats. The dogs have gone to Scotland, England, Holland and one puppy found a great home here on the Island. Every time we say goodbye it is really difficult but we know it’s absolutely for the best. We are lucky to find them new families and also lucky that the new owners keep us posted from time on their new lives. The last dog to leave was about a month ago now. Her name is Tollie and we found her on the outskirts of the village with a puppy. The puppy was about 2 months old and Tollie the mother only about a year. She was an incredibly good mother. The puppy, now called Cookie found a home here on the island. She was taken by a Greek girl and is happy, spoilt and doing well. Tollie was well loved in our garden and also a big hit with the children of the village. Bingo our white rescue cat had a special bond with her and they played together continuously, it was sometimes quite rough and tumble but they loved it and it was a joy to witness. They slept together every night even when the puppy was still with us. They would choose the smallest dog bed and all pile one on top of the other occasionally you would find that the puppy was at the bottom. She was a sensitive enthusiastic and charismatic dog and when she looked at you, you felt she could see into your soul. Nellie our first rescue dong, the one we have kept became her close friend. Nellie is very particular and doesn’t share herself with just anyone. They had hours of fun together and Tollie even managed to convince Nellie to relax and play, something that didn’t come naturally to Nellie. On the day Tollie left we took her and Nellie to a lovely beach for their last run together. We then drove to the port where she boarded a boat for Athens. This was the first leg of her long trip to the UK. Here are some photos of their last games. They were in dog heaven. I cried when we handed her to Vasillia her chaperone on the boat to Athens. Vasillia then took her in a taxi and checked her onto her flight to Heathrow. It was so sad to say goodbye but we knew it was the right thing for her. Tollie is now in a lovely home just outside of London and we have seen photos of her with her new friend Jack, she is happy. Tollie you will never be forgotten, thank you for all the laughter, joy, love and fun you brought to My Greek Island Home.

 

 

 

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