Archanes

Today my wife had to attend the Eurographics 2008 conference, so Erica, a classmate from Stanford who was here as the spouse, and I decided to go for a quick drive.

My cousin Kostas Tsigaridis who had lived on Crete for many years in Heraklion while he worked on his BS, MS and Ph.D. in Chemistry had strongly recommended we go to Archanes. He said that was the last truly pretty village of Crete.

The drive to the village was made worse by the Piece of Shit GPS system that we used. There is a fine easy to use road that will quickly take one to Archanes. Unforutnately the GPS had stale map information so it took us along one of those scenic Cretan 1 lane roads that are bi-directional with a cliff to one side.

On the positive side it did allow us to take take in some pretty vistas  of the interior of Crete.

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The village has a lot of well preserved traditional homes with their traditional colors, and traditional verandas that are decorated with many potted plants. We were able to peak through open doors and take pictures of the interior.

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One of the more interesting aspects of the village was that the signs were all traditional hand-painted signs of the form that used to adorn all village stores throughout Greece. This is, in my mind, is another example of Greece in many ways becoming less fawning of foreign styles and prouder of it’s own heritage. Only 20 years ago, the notion of a Greek store with a Greek sign on an island with this many tourists would have been laughable.

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Like all villages there were a great many older men who were walking around taking in the sounds or drinking their coffees in the local kafenion.

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The gentlemen in this photo were gossiping about the local hotties.

As we walked around the village we took pictures of the small houses

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including the only three story building.

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