Same beach south of Patra, Greece
If we felt like we were in a fairy tale in Germany….and preparing for medieval battles with the kings and queens of England….and swimming round bowls of pasta in Italy with place names that rolled off the tongue like spiralled spaghetti (our map mentions Comacchio, Gimignano, Montalcino, Sassuolo, Montagnana, Cerignola, Pitigliano, Campobasso, Montepulciano, Polignano, Miglionico, Capaccio and Battipaglia – we stayed at that last one)….now that we are in Greece, we’ve been transported back even further, perhaps right between the pages of a Greek myth. We camp near Poseidon Beach, pass Monolithi Beach, catch sight of Atlantis Aquapark, drive over Kleopatra’s Canal and momentarily wish we might check in to Pegasos Hotel with its blue blue swimming pool overlooking the beach.
A flock of sheep right outside our window on the dirt path between us and the breaking waves was not what we expected to see first thing this morning. But it’s what was there. They surveyed us with as quizzical expressions as we did them! Then they brushed on past the van, bells tinkling….towards the dry grass masquerading as pasture.
The shepherd, carrying a long staff with goose head carved into the curved top, wandered along the beach to chat with the fisherman drawing in their catch. Apart from the wetsuit, boogie board and blue jeans, we could be in a timeframe BC.
Maybe we ARE in a myth.
Or perhaps we’re living a fable.
Have you heard the one about the hare and the tortoise?
Our first day here we saw a tortoise crossing the road (prompting the inevitable-for-us Why Did The Tortoise Cross The Road joke…the answer being “To see if he could do any better than the three hedgehogs, two dogs, one cat and something that looked like a fox.” And, we are pleased to recount, he did supremely better…his little clockwork legs looking like an advertisement for everready batteries scrambled his shell to the safety of the grass verge, managing to avoid both our vehicles.)
Wasn’t it the Greek man Aesop, who is credited with composing the original fable?
If I told you what happened to our dinner tonight you’d think it a tall tale, and maybe in time it will become a cautionary tale of legendary proportions, but for now, we are trying to decide whether to classify the story as comedy or tragedy.
That’s EXACTLY where the sheep tramped through this morning. Moral to the tale is drain spaghetti or fettucine or tagiatelli or gnocchi or anything into a bowl. Then if it all falls out, all is not lost.
Needless to say, we ate late. Not that the non-chefs minded; gave them more time to perfect their trebuchet (they thought they were back in England).
Fairy tale, myth, tall tale or fable? We’re living in a literary reality.
PS The verdict is in. Spaghetti Incident was Comedy. Jgirl14 relates in her journal:
How many ways can you ruin pasta? Undercooking is possible. I have also overcooked it a couple of times, although have never managed to reduce it to mush; that trophy goes to Jboy13.
Apart from that, I have perfected the art of cooking pasta with limited water and gas. So this evening I cook the spaghetti perfectly…..as I’m draining the water off all is going well until…SPLAT…AllThePasta is in the dirt. For one moment I have that sinking feeling that accompanies doing something stupid, but it’s hard not to laugh at the bird’s nest of spaghetti that lies, steaming in the dust; it had made such a funny noise as it slopped out of the pot. We manage a serious, “Sorry” while Mum snaps a photo.
Then I try again. This time draining the pot over a bowl.
Tags: 2008/09, book, history, postcard: Greece, tradition