Thursday, June 04, 2009

there comes a time...

in all of my work-at-home weeks, i always reach a point when i think, "today, i shall bathe and get dressed and go forth among people. i shall put these sweatpants and this t-shirt that i've been wearing day and night for the past 3-4 days into the laundry basket and put on real clothing--like tights and a cheery dress. i shall behave like a human being today." it helps if the sun comes out. because cloudy, windy, rainy days only promote my hermit-like tendencies.

and then i was reminded of a place that could well be termed hermit heaven. it's called meteora and it's in greece. it's inland in north central greece, in a strange moonlike landscape, where these porous, harsh, rocky hills suddenly stick up out of the flat plain.


in this strange and rather mysterious place, monks built countless monasteries, high on the peaks.


eight-ten of them are still in operation and open to the public (if you like to climb), but there are many ruins around on outcroppings that look like they must have been impossible to reach. they are, to my imagination, impossibly romantic in their isolation.


there are countless more little caves hollowed out in the hillsides, where individual hermit monks went to be on their own. undoubtedly wearing the same thing for days on end and muttering to themselves and resenting intrusions, much as i do around here.


although i'm not fond of heights, i'm attracted to the idea of being somewhere where the only way to get there would be a ladder like this...


because you could see whoever was coming quite a long ways off.  and the sheer difficulty of it would put most intruders off.


i've been there twice, but feel its allure pulling me back, probably due the amount of time i spend alone, but also because it's a wonderful and mysterious place. maybe that's where we should go this summer.

but first, i should probably get dressed.

24 comments:

The Fragrant Muse said...

I can see the attraction. Being here would be like climbing inside one of your rocks. The ultimate grounding experience. Even if it is in the sky.

Hit 40 said...

When you typed, there comes a time when...

I figured you were going to say that you were outta chocolate? This would get me out!! EMERGENCY!!

Great pictures!

Extranjera said...

This looks like heaven to me, if it only had wireless, elevators and an unlimited selection of books and wine (and possibly bad television when one has had way too much of the wine).

I could totally hole up in one of them holes (that is, if i would fit in one, of course)

Extranjera said...

Did I really forgot coffee?!?! What is wrong with me?

julochka said...

HRH TFM: i hadn't thought about that, but you're right. rocks writ large.

hit40: to be honest, i could totally do without chocolate. like forever. i am, however, out of milk for my coffee and tea now, so i may have to leave for that. and for wine, i would leave for wine. but i've currently got 18 bottles of white, 6 of which are in the fridge, so i'm good.

ext--there would be one you could totally fit in and probably get some little greek kid to run that stuff up to you on a regular basis. or at least use a rope & pulley/basket system for fresh supplies.

Madame Ladybug (Ady) said...

I want to go too!

Bee said...

The name is intriguing, because it does look like some meteor-pocked lunar landscape! How wonderful.

Yesterday I never got out of my exercise clothes. (Truly, I am also happiest at home -- not being intruded upon!)

Amanda said...

I am jealous of all of your alone time...must make more of it for myself.

Meri said...

Methinks they probably NEVER showered, except when it rained. They were probably alone for that reason.

Char said...

i think sometimes as i look out over the jungle in my backyard, that i have a hidey hole like these. one of my very own and most people cannot find unless i invite them. it's nice bu even hermits get lonely, shave and venture forth.

rxBambi said...

When husband and I first got married I hated it when he'd leave. I hated to be alone. Now I relish the time without any kids around to bug me. If I could just teach the dogs to open the doors and pour the wine I'd never have to get up.
The place sounds wonderful. Where in Greece??
PS- instead of Greek children bringing me supplies I'd like a big strong man to come and take care of my needs...

Fidgeting Gidget said...

That looks great, but that flimsy little ladder would have to be replaced with something a little sturdier...I am like a cat...I can get up in high places, but I can't get down!

Lorac said...

The landscape there is amazing! I could definitely stay there for awhile, but I would want to crawl in those caves and see what is there. Being in a cave alone for a few days? Priceless!

Vancouver's Enviro Girl said...

I am booking my flight to Greece NOW to get away from total s*%t that happened yesterday which makes me want to crawl in (those) holes and hide forever.

Bill Stankus said...

C'mon now, you're attracted to Meteora because it's a ROCK and you want to put a big doily on it's top.

Optimistic Pessimist said...

Maybe I've been a bit too harsh on the whole religion thing lately. Any religion where someone goes off alone, mutters to themself, and wears the same thing for days on end has my stamp of approval.

I think I might already be unknowingly practicing this religion.

Joanna Jenkins said...

Can I go too?!?!? What a cool place.

And I totally understand the "not getting dressed, I work at home" thing. Sometimes I catch a look at my?in the mirror and wonder what the hell happened :-)

Love your blog! More please.

marinik said...

yes do that... get dressed and get out and enjoy,( i should do that more often too).
i have been to meteora too, and have visited one of the monasteries, it's one of the most mystical places on earth, i'd love to go back. i've been to greece twice and can go back time and time again (my grandmother was greek and both parents were born there, so i hear it calling me all the time,.... hey it's in my blood.
great post julochka, really enjoyed it :)

Just Jules said...

looks cold... that is all I have. Just woke from my own hermit like nap and feel cold.

Cyndy said...

I could go for the hermit thing, but not in enclosed places. No caves, tunnels, etc. for me. You can send me postcards! The place does look incredible, though. My husband would love it. Maybe if I send him and the kids there to play, I could achieve hermitude...

libby walkup said...

This looks beautiful and terrifying all at the same time. (I too have a fear of heights. I don't believe I would be able to get up there.)

Seaside Girl said...

I love that ladder. I mean there is no way I would ever attempt to climb up it but what a fantastic photo.

discounderworld said...

Haha, thanks for admitting what I do on a regular basis! Except I wear a jersey that is 15 years old, knitted for me in the nineties when big sweaters were all the rage, that fashion faux pas still pays off today!

Mary Ellen said...

Yes, let's go there, and we can each have one of those cozy caves. Hermits rock!