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    Easter …. in Skopelos ….. a touching experience ……

    DSC_0783My Dear Readers – Skopelos

    I had in mind to dedicate the new chapter of my blog to Monemvassia – wonderful location in Peloponnese- but I spent Easter in Skopelos, and it has been such a nice and touching experience that I need to write about.


    Our trip to Skopelos

    This Easter we decided to spend our “Easter Holidays” in  Skopelos, and not to stay with our families since we had to go there to fix some personal issues for the wedding  – that needed some time and I must say that Skopelos is not right the corner, even if you live in Athens….

    When we arrived we were very sad since it was raining and the sky was very dark … therefore we said .. “ok, let’s have 4 rainy days of holidays ….. ” BUT only after a couple of hours the weather completely changed and we had 4 days of Sun, warm and also of sun bathing !!! (I had to go and buy a sun cream :) )

    Panagia SkopleouSkopelos in Spring is wonderful – everything is in flower, the forests are very green and colored …. nice weather to go around and to have a walk in the mountains and the Chora start populating  !
    When we went in Autumn most of the houses were closed, shops were closed too – it was very nice and chic still not very engaging  ……

    Easter
    Our trip moreover occurred in the most important period of the year in Greece – Easter !
    Actually since I am living here I have the impression that Easter is even more important than Christmas.
    There are several days of celebrations, and all people is living the Sacred Easter with a lot of passion …. all families are together …. and eating Lamb is the tradition ! All family participate for the preparation of the Lamb and Cocoretsi

    We arrived in Skopelos on Friday ….on Good Friday – Megali Paraskevi ! and until Sunday I constantly heard the voice of the Priest singing the prayers … very Sacred and touching experience ……

    Good Friday – Megali Paraskevi

    EpitaffioThroughout Greece, Good Friday is known as the day of mourning. It is the only day of the year that the Divine Liturgy will not be celebrated.

    In the evening, at 9 pm, all churches in all Greece start the Ceremony of Epitaphio. The Epitaphio is taken out of the church and carried by men through the village to the cemetery and back, with a slow procession of priests and altar boys carrying gold crosses and Icons. The church congregation follows, holding lit candles symbolizing the mourners. The chants are sad and solemn and the Church bells will ring slow and rhythmically as they do when signaling a funeral. In Skopelos this year this ceremony started a bit later. When we heard the bells and the Priest singing we went up to the Chora and waited for the procession to come …..

    After the procession we enjoyed a delicious dinner to a very nice restaurant I kindly recommend – Rodo, inside the Chora

    Holy Saturday “Megalo Savato

    Saturday, after having spent all morning  taking appointments with people we needed to meet and of course also enjoying the island and the sea in the afternoon  – we were all waiting for the Big Ceremony of the Resurrection. This is the Day of the Light … the Spirit of Jesus …. of the Resurrection …

    At 11 pm we were in the main Church of Skopelos, standing in the courtyards, silently waiting for the light .….with our just bought candles …… Just before midnight, the church  turned off all it’s lights – except for the Eternal Flame that was  inside the Altar. Everything was dark and we had been waiting in silence …  symbolizing the darkness and silence of the tomb.

    But when the clock stroke midnight, the priest lighted his candle from the Eternal Flame and sang out ‘Christos Anesti’ – ‘Christ is risen’. Holding his lit candle out, he offered the flame to the congregation that was closest to him. After lighting their own candle, they passed the flame back to others and to us  and in a few minutes the entire church and courtyards were filled with flickering candle light. Moreover  in that very moment of the lighting of the candles we started hearing sirens from the ships in the port .. while the church bells kept on ringing  … I have been really touched by it ….. this will be an experience I will never forget …..

    Sunday
    Sunday was finally the day of the Celebration of the Resurrection ! Everyone was happy, outside their houses cooking and preparing the Lamb ! Everyone was saying “Xronia Polla'”
    We spent all the morning going up and down the Chora, and I took a lot of picture since the day was simply amazing :)

    I also tried to get an invitation from a person that was cooking souvlakia on his balcony … the smell was simply delicious … I said “Afto’ mirisi fantastika !” It smells nice !! but Kostas prevented that….  he told me that I had to keep on walking …… and we did ….. still I was looking for a “friendly” place where to enjoy Easter Lunch ……..

    On the way to SedoukiaSince the day was simply amazing we decided to go on the mountains, to Sedoukia to look for ancient graves, in the rocks ….
    It was a very nice walk, among many daisies ….. and the view from Sedoukia was simply amazing ! You could see part of Skopelos and all Alonissos in front of you …..

    And  the thing that really changed our day … was …….. we have been invited for lunch by complete unknown people …. and we enjoyed nice food and very good company with them …. simply because I saw a teverna by the sea, in Loutraki,  where there were some people … I asked if it was open … and you know what ?? they invited us to Spend Easter with their family  … all together !
    At some point they also came to us and we danced NISIOTIKO together ……… thanks God ! I took lessons :)

    It was nice to spend Easter with “friends” and not alone ……. and the Lamb was simply delicious !!!! Guys if  you are going to Loutraki – close to Glossa – please go to this taverna. It’s really ad the end of the port, by the beach with wonderful view to Skiathos ! Armirali taverna !

    They are very nice and the food was very tasty !

    During this trip we really met many nice people – honestly I feel already part of Skopelos community :)

    Everyone was no nice ! and helped us a lot ! I must admit that our  “working” holidays has been very profitable ! Maybe one day I will buy a small house there …… maybe ……

    That was our Easter ! and I strongly suggest you to come to Greece for this time of the year … maybe best to an island ………this will be a very touching experience ……….

    Ciao !
    φιλακια

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