Lost in Crete
From Piraeus to the outskirts of Europe are a night of navigation. Mythology tells that Europa was kidnapped by Zeus, turned into a white bull and taken to Crete. The arrival at dawn, with the first lights of the morning that outline the jagged Mycenaean coasts give the idea of a fortress. An insurmountable, safe place, unaccustomed to the prying eyes of those who want to immediately perceive their moods, it lets you enter on tiptoe, in silence.
Fatality and the fortress of mountains, valleys and gorges lend themselves to returning impassable. The second wave of Covid19 also affects Greece and Crete consequently receives the reflections of the decisions of the Greek central government. Air and sea connections are closed, we have an entire island to discover, explore and fully experience for the next few months. The Periphery of Europe is different and multifaceted, hard and rough sometimes but digging deeply you can find its beating heart, proud that reminds us with a look to never forget «the true Cretan vein»
Attracted by the South, by its wild beaches and from the tales and clues of those who lived with us in Chania we move towards the Valle de Messara, at the time it was the granary of Crete and in the last 50 years it has transformed into an infinite olive grove nestled in the Cretan mountains. Rural Crete is within our reach and it is here that we live strongly human experiences that will take us deeply into the thinking of the inhabitants of this island, in their customs.
Crete is also this, the cultural mix found in the cities of the north coast disappears, almost disappears in the black shawls of the widows, in the tired eyes of the now retired men who, between a cigarette and a coffee, observe life in the town square. In that blanket of smoke, in those deafening silences, in those gazes that don’t say but judge the true essence of Crete moves silently.
Crete is passion and meraki, putting your soul, creativity and love into what you do, leaving a piece of you always in your work, in your life. You join the community slowly and silently, you begin to live the routine of the village, small, set in the emerald green color given by the fields of olive trees invaded by clover. Nature is wild and unique, ranging from the dry rocks of the mountains dotted with goats, to the steep cliffs that run towards the sea, the immensity of the sea that reminds us of being on an island, the earth roads that snake down towards the coast and the silences of which the people, the streets and the houses of these small villages are full.
Villages that today are disappearing, fall into oblivion, what they were years ago remains only in the memories of the people who still want to tell; they are filled with winter, when workers from Pakistan occupy the cold and dilapidated houses and the streets are filled for a few months once again with a life from a sleepy rhythm, before it all turns back into the hands of time.
A short story accompanies this series of images, read on my Blog section Death of an Orthodox Communist.
Shot by Fujifilm XT1, 18 mm & 35mm
Crete, December 2020