Friday, 23 November 2012

Rainshine

Autumn in Crete is never highly visible, due to the evergreen landscape. The hills of the Cretan countryside are covered in olive trees, which do not shed their leaves, so we don't get the spectacular auburn-red carpets seen elsewhere in the fall season. The leaves of the tress that do fall often turn brown very quickly because of the temperatures, which are usually higher than one is normally accustomed to when they hear the word 'autumn'.

Autumn usually comes late to Hania and the temperature can be variable throughout the day. There is no better place to observe this than the mountains. The day may start off very fine and clear, but end up very wet.



Rainfall in Hania hardly ever consists of a spastic continuous drizzle. It comes in torrents, and then departs and doesn't come back for a while. Passing showers are frequent. This allows the locals to get a lot of work done on a day when it looks as though it will rain: you just wait for the shower to pass. While we clearing our field, we noticed a few fires in other areas where people were doing the same thing. The day was perfect for this - not too hot, not at all cold, and no wind.


Some of us gathered olives for curing, others cleared the olive grove. 

Although we did experience a good shower at one point while we were in our olive grove, this did not deter my husband from barbecuing some pork steaks and sausages. He felt that the charcoals left from the burning of olive cuttings would go to waste otherwise. We stayed in the car until the rain cleared.

 

We would have sat in the olive grove and eaten our lunch there and then, had it not started raining again, which consisted of a stronger rain shower. Our cheeks had become very rosy from being out in the crisp air, but it was now starting to turn cold. The thunderclaps were so loud that they scared the dog; the lightning bolts could be seen falling onto the hills in the distance.



It was time to call it a day, after spending five hours in the area. We made our way back home and tucked in heartily.

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