Monday, October 27, 2008

Sunday Walking Around

I wandered around the backstreets today with a camera. I will eventually get tired of ruins juxtaposed with newer buildings, but I’m not there yet. I saw archaeological excavations of Minoan structures, marked for the levels in the ground. The city was called Kidonia before the Venetians came and renamed it La Canea. I saw old monasteries. I saw a lot of partial buildings joined to other buildings. It is a little hard to conceive of so much history all in one place, coming from an area where the visible history is less than three hundred years. There are many pieces of wall with windows enclosing nothing but air and vines. (There are lovely Morning Glories blooming cascading blue down the walls.) A sign on a ruined monastery advertised rooms to rent, with bath and kitchen. The rooms were actually located in a building that was behind the roofless stone walls and gaping arched windows, which I saw only after I did the double take.

I saw minarets and old churches; Byzantine arched buildings under restoration; scrollwork wrought iron doors and balconies; blooming bougainvillea and hibiscus; what looks like poppy buds except the leaves are wrong; geraniums; ripening oranges, plums, lemons, pomegranates, roses, olives, morning glories, several varieties of palm, grapes and another vine. There is not a lot of green space in the old city, but there are a couple of small parks farther back from the harbor.

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