Good Friday Stroll: 8 Epitaphios in Old Nicosia

There was a flood of young people and people of other ages visiting the churches of Nicosia Within-the-Walls during the afternoon of Good Friday 22 April. Reviving an old custom, we venerated the Epitaphios in 8 churches: Chrysaliniotissa, Agios Kassianos, Phaneromeni, Trypiotis, Agios Savvas, Agios Philoumenos, Agios Antonios, Agios Varnavas (Cathedral). Enjoy the photos, compliments of Nicos. Best wishes for a Happy Easter.

Ukraine invaded by Russia – scratching the surface

Living in multinational Cyprus, I have Ukrainian friends and I have Russian friends. Several of them join me in my hiking outings regularly. Read this opinion here https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/ukraine-invaded-russia-scratching-surface-xenophon-hasapis/ If you care, you may leave a comment right below this space.

A Hike to send one to sleep – Platania–Spilia 5 Feb.

A large and multinational group of Strollers brought their positive attitude and turned the hike along a rather unexciting path at Platania to a memorable experience, sufficient to help everyone sail through our ordinary week. Compliments to Anna for the beautiful photos. Don’t miss our cultural and romantic day out on 13 Feb. https://cyprus-strollers.org/activities-description/galata-cultural-romantic-stroll-sunday-13-feb/

Contact with nature reduces loneliness, study shows

Read this interesting piece of research from The Guardian https://www.theguardian.com/society/2021/dec/20/contact-with-nature-cities-reduces-loneliness-study-mental-health. I quote one finding: “when people were able to see trees or the sky, or hear birds, feelings of loneliness fell by 28%. Feelings of social inclusion also cut loneliness by 21%, and when these feelings coincided with contact with nature the beneficial effect was boosted by a further 18%”. Faithful of The Cyprus Strollers know about these positive outcomes very well.

Another Greek Tragedy

Readers know that the founder of this Club had founded the Athens Strollers, in his years in Greece. It is with great grief that I draw the words that follow. The wildfires in the outskirts of Athens are burning down a significant ‘lung’ of the Greek capital. Tatoi is a large forest, corresponding to what Athalassa is for Nicosia, but multiple times larger. Tatoi lies just below Parnitha, the main mountain overlooking Greater Athens.

You can imagine that there exist(ed) a good number of trails, which the Athens Strollers have walked time and again. With the present fires, it feels as if one part of myself and my memories is burning down. May this catastrophe end immediately and may it be the last one. (Photo credit Yiannis Kolesidis)

Hiking and Health Minister victims of lying Troodos trippers

The news has been widely circulated and commented. Day trippers to Troodos over the past two weekends had the almost sole purpose of taking photos of themselves on snow, as is a customary ‘sport’ among many city dwellers in Cyprus, when snow falls on Troodos. Caught by the police, they reported ‘hiking’ as the cause of their outing. This distortion forced the Minister of Health to ban hikes on the island’s nature trails on 27 Jan.

This Club can only abide by the rules, even when these are unjust. We hope the ban will be lifted soon. Until then, Club Members are urged to make use of city parks and seaside walks.

How Odd, No photos to boast

In these times of an almost manic pursuit of photos, to show one’s accomplishments (or agony), often shared on social media, here is a message to all Club members and friends, without a photo. It is prompted by an outing of Christos and Xenophon in the forest between Kakopetria and Prodromos, on 20 Dec., whose highlight was the very rare sighting of young mouflons! First, we saw a pair on the very dirt road we were using, some 25 m in front; minutes after we saw one on a slope to our left; and much later we saw another mouflon high up by a pine tree. It is impossible to have time to take a good photo, given that this rare species of wild sheep, endemic to Cyprus, does not like human presence. Nevertheless, the magic of the moments has been captured via the lenses of our eyes. This is just a tiny example of the splendid experiences The Cyprus Strollers offer their members.

We remain adherent to Government restrictions vis-à-vis the epidemic, yet optimistic we will be able to resume activities on 16 January. Visit https://cyprus-strollers.org/activities-schedule/ in a few days to read the full Schedule of events for January-May 2021. We wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happier New Year.

To the source of Pedieos river – 6 Dec.

The hike of Sunday 6 Dec. took us down to the source of Pedieos river, which we crossed twice, up through the village of Lazanias and down to the heritage village of Fikardou, on a splendid day, which was superbly rounded up by a rich meal at the club’s favourite Marinos taverna in Lythrodontas. Compliments to Antonis for leading the outing. Join us on 13 Dec. round the Larnaca lake https://cyprus-strollers.org/activities-description/larnaca-salt-lake-13-dec/ 

Next event moves from Saturday 5 to Sunday 6 Dec.

The hike on Mahairas mountain moves from Saturday 5 Dec. to Sunday 6 Dec. All other pertinent conditions remain. The weather forecast shows a distinct difference between the two days: thunderstorms at 60% probability for Saturday, partly sunny with 5% probability for rain for Sunday. Interested to participate? Send your e-mail now.