Aegean Day 2

Kalymnos

Pothia
We crossed to Kalymnos and walked through the town of Pothia, “a network of narrow streets bordered by balconied stone buildings with pedimented windows and sternly rusticated corners” and visited a modern archeological museum (a special treat) that had

IMG_6129
lady_of_kalymnos[1]marvelous sculptures, displayed well. Interesting that most of the men were depicted naked – the young ones; Asclepius, who we know of because his snake-entwined staff remains a symbol of medicine today, is always depicted as an old man, bearded and clothed (he’s at the back – the lighting, as flash was not allowed, made the photo difficult), but women and girls clothed, albeit in fine draping fabrics (photo, not mine, of a larger than life bronze sculpture of the Lady of Kalymnos, thought to be Demeter, found by a fisherman in 1994).

We enjoyed lunch at a fish restaurant  (garlic shrimp and much more) and continued to a sponge warehouse where we learned the history of the sponge trade, from the original free divers, weighed down by stones on IMG_6136ropes, to the Industrial Revolution and the deep-water diving suit which decimated the male populace. They didn’t know about nitrogen in the blood, caused by rapid decompression, resulting in the bends and possible death. (When I used to scuba dive we always had a 5-minute stop at 5 meters on the way back up.) Anyway, the bottom fell out of the sponge trade in the 1930’s with synthetic sponges. Some of us bought authentic sponges to take home for presents as they weigh practically nothing.

An afternoon swim, the water much too cold for me.  A huge dinner, with wines, on the boat.

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