Graham Mayor

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Cyprus 2006 - 7

The first New Year in our new home and it wasn't long before I dropped my trusty old Canon Ixus, wrecking the lens assembly. It wasn't until May and the launch of a brand new Ixus model (the 65) from Canon that I was able to replace it. The new camera is perhaps a little more delicate than the old one, but it takes better pictures and I don't need spectacles to see the 3" display screen!

Click on a thumbnail for a larger view of the photograph.

February 2006 and winter storm clouds gather overhead, as seen from my office window. February is grey mullet spawning season. This beauty, the best of three, caught from Kato Paphos promenade, weighed in at 3 kg. Spring is in the air and the first buds form on my peach tree.
Balloon sellers at the Paphos Carnival 2006 March 6th - Green Monday .... .... and that sky has not been retouched. 20 degrees and wall to wall blue.
I never could resist a cute cat picture. Paphos is famous for its harbour pelicans ... ...though this is the only one around at present.
March 14th and the sky is full of desert sand from the Sahara. We need a good rain storm to clear the air. The Easter bonfire in Kissonerga ... .... and a glimpse of the spectacular ....
.... firework display. New properties at the Paphos Sea Caves area .... You have to wonder why planning permission was granted to build here?
And down the road in nearby Agios Georgios, bathing has apparently been banned from the beach - or more likely just from the quayside as the sign is ambiguously placed ? Agios Georgios ... ... and again
Fishing boats at Agios Georgios Must belong to a Brit. with a name like that Now that's what I call a barbie
This is the delightful flower of the plant commonly called 'Aphrodite's Hair' which appears in April and May. The scourge of Paphos - some of the many time share and holiday club touts harassing tourists Akamas National Park and the approach to Avagas Gorge
This stream runs through the gorge and can become swollen and dangerous following heavy rains ... ... but not today ... Inside the gorge
and again Rock formations near the gorge are a climbing frame for goats. The Akamas Peninsula near to the Baths Of Aphrodite
The coast here is spectacular - until some moron decides to build a hotel More of this spectacular coast ... ... and again
These goats missed the Easter feasting Kolossi Castle Stone pillars at the Sanctuary of Appollo near the British Sovereign Area Episkopi
The amphitheatre at Curium Curium again. This amphitheatre is still in regular use for concerts and plays. Some of the ancient mosaics at Curium
Looking out from Curium towards Limassol. Set sail on the Jolly Roger for another Paphos booze cruise. 4th June and the Kato Paphos street vendors' stands are out selling nuts and Chinese tat etc ready for the festival of Kataklysmos next weekend ....
.... but not all of them are open at 10.30 am? See what 3 weeks growth can do to a garden here in Cyprus . This one was taken a couple of days before my holiday.... ... and this one was taken the day after my return, and after I had removed a barrow full of weeds!
Local custom has Greek dancers balancing drinking glasses on the head. Here 20 glasses! Not the best of pictures and that spotlight doesn't help, but everyone seems to be enjoying themselves. Friday 13th of October - Lucky for some, but not for us as a major storm blows in from the sea.
This is the first rain since April, but we need the water.... ... though two inches of rain in an hour seems a bit over the top ... ...especially when I topped up the pool level yesterday
Another storm last night lit up the sky for a couple of hours. Autumn near the summit of Mt. Olympus Sunlight shows up detail on this Black Pine tree bark
The last day of November and just look at that sky More views from Olympus ... ... again ...
...and again ... ...and again Paphos harbour is famous for its pelicans, though in recent years they have not been so obvious.
A closer look The board walk near the Alexander The Great Beach Hotel, Kato Paphos is frequently damaged and was finally destroyed by a storm on the 13th October. This time it has been replaced by a substantial stone structure topped with concrete ... .... and presumably crazy paving to follow, given the different levels.
The flash flood completely undermined the mouth of this storm drain, washing away tons of earth and rock. This is the replacement .... .... and here is some of the debris  

2007 - After a stormy, though not especially wet, winter, January begins with glorious sunshine.

The marine police patrol boat speeds back to the harbour on a glorious January (2007) morning... ... slowing past our vantage point. Back in port.
Easter Saturday and as midnight approaches the bonfire is lit, for the symbolic burning of Judas At the hour of midnight, the church is plunged into darkness ... ... then the church doors are opened and the light is passed ...
... from candle to candle ... ... around the village ... ... followed by ...
... a splendid ... ... fireworks ... ... display ...
... organised ... ... by the ... ... Local ...
... Authority. June 12th and water levels are very low in the Kouris Dam near Limassol. (Checkout the 2003 gallery to see what it should look like) The Asprokremnos Dam fares only a little better. I guess we are in for rationing soon?
Asprokremnos again. It seems like no time at all since the dam was flowing over the overflow (left of the picture) Still in search of that elusive clear picture of Morphou Bay from the higher reaches of Mount Olympus ... ... but it doesn't seem to get any better than this.
I never tire of the high slopes of Olympus where the altitude can often give some respite from the glaring heat at the coast. ... ... here 21 degrees against 34 at the coast - 21st June 2007 ... ... and there are miles of woodland trails to walk
The flower of the Black Pine which grows in abundance - with great longevity ... ... like this 500 year old example ... A close up of the plaque
... and this magnificent specimen The bark hides many insects ... ... which birds will rip apart to access.
If only the majesty of the view could be expressed in a photograph small enough to post on the web site. Many of the trees at this altitude show evidence of lightning strike Young trees are everywhere ...
... and soon grow into forest. My neighbour's answer to the water crisis is to drill a well (for which curiously there are government grants available). At 63 feet a snag. The drill has hit a hard impervious rock. More equipment will be needed to get past that.
Three weeks on from the previous photograph and the Kouris Dam looks very low. Troodos Square is quiet for July, and whose silly idea was that cobbled road? Troodos now has some pleasant walkways ...


... and shady seating areas.  I love these black pine trees and the views across the valleys
Here near Platres, an attempt at the environmental blending of the unblendable. Sheep and goats grazing at the roadside are becoming less common and for the shepherd and his animals there is little shade from the ferocious sun. And when you add a little carelessness to that parched land, the result is forest fire and charred trees ...
... which near Saittas resulted in the loss of hundreds of acres of woodland and orchard ...  ... and all the while the reservoirs are diminished by evaporation and consumption. Here the latest picture of Kouris ... ... here Asprokremnos ...
... where the water level is fast declining Asprokremnos again from the top of the dam... ... where all that land should be under water
November 2007 saw barriers being erected around Kato Paphos. Behind the barriers earth moving machinery reshapes the familiar shoreline Pedestrians are restricted from accessing the main promenade area ...
... but some shop owners have decided to tough it out behind the barricades. This will have an unfortunate effect on business ... ... but for some the pathway now passes through their premises...
... and in places there is a little more space than in others. Even 'Το Λιμανάκι' kiosk is moving ... ... to a new location close to the camera position  ...
... to allow development of the foreshore into the sea. Work is scheduled to last three months, though I hear that this schedule may have been stretched to five months. The 'forbidden land' viewed from the harbour. A few days later and 'Το Λιμανάκι' kiosk is gone, though the footings in the foreground suggest a new location soon.
Sunday's sun setting over the road works and the newly opened 'Tea For Two' cafe takes its first customers. Another week and the base for the new kiosk(?) is laid and the metalwork is being fixed. At the other end of the promenade it appears that the popular "Τα Μπανiα" restaurant will be renovated. It has been stripped to a skeleton of concrete.
Behind the barricades some of the shops remain open. The sea can get very rough here in winter, so far it has been kind. How do you get 5 hunting dogs in a tiny mobile kennel?
Despite some heavy rainfall in December water levels in the Asprokremnos Dam remain low You can see from the marks on the tower where the water level should rise to... ...and here alongside is the overflow stranded high and dry.
However we still have a way to go before ... ... the taps run dry. Work has continued on the Kato Paphos redevelopment through the Christmas period
I suspect this 'canal' will soon be filled in to widen the promenade. Farther along a sub surface has been laid and rolled ... ... for the new 'pedestrian' area.
The work was originally rumoured to last three months, but somehow I don't see the restaurant being finished by Easter... ... and it's anyone's guess what this is going to be... ... and this one is the view from the harbour car park.

That's all for 2007. Further views of the Kato Paphos redevelopment will be added to the 2008 gallery