The Hydra Meetup 2011 - Reports and Photo Links

Our biennial Hydra meetups, and the big 2002 Event

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Re: Hydra meetup in June 2011

Postby ciaran on Wed Jun 15, 2011 12:26 am

My first time in Hydra… but certainly not the last!

Thanks to Hydra, Lufthansa, Swiss Air, Hellenic Seaways, the X96 but, most of all, to all of you who made me feel so welcome in this little paradise.

To the next time!

Ciarán

..and great photos, Maarten!
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Re: Hydra meetup in June 2011

Postby Lord Mickey of One on Wed Jun 15, 2011 2:41 am

Andrew (Darby) wrote:Hey Maarten, thanks so much for another set of fab photos... and so quickly dispatched... the last Mythos's would hardly have hit the bottom of the stomachs at Roloi by the time you sent your photos! ;-)

Stamatina, your words are so sweet and touching (and inclusive) - it was so nice you could experience that and Sophia is to be applauded in no small measure for ensuring you could join the Cohenites on this happy occasion. 8)

Cheers,
Andrew :)



You were much missed, Andy.
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Re: Hydra meetup in June 2011

Postby lizzytysh on Wed Jun 15, 2011 4:42 am

Such a pensive face in Maarten's lovely photos on your last morning there, Stamatina. The glow you have as you board the hydrofoil to return to Piraeus [in your goodbyes to your new loved ones] and in your other photos is enough to light a dark room enough to read by. Your happiness is everywhere 8) .

Great photologue, Maarten... you do so well with your camera!

Michael ~ Have I ever told you how fortunate you are to have Justyna in your personal world? Yes, that's what I thought... I have. Your photos of her are gorgeous. For her... gotta love your new red lipstick and straight bangs... the London Justyna. Love your love for the cats. Shared.
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Re: Hydra meetup in June 2011

Postby donalagata on Wed Jun 15, 2011 6:52 am

Wonderful pictures Maarten the island is incredibly beautiful. The pictures captured so much of its natural beauty with the white sand and turquoise water. It looked very warm there ... which was evident by the amount of sweating people were doing.Of course walking up hill in the heat would definitely cause anyone to sweat.I am sure seeing the monastery was well worth the effort it took getting there. Looks like everyone had a very good time.Thank you for all of the pictures that you took and have share with those of us who could not make it.

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Re: Hydra meetup in June 2011

Postby Maarten on Wed Jun 15, 2011 1:14 pm

Hi,
For those of you who have FaceBook accounts: I have uploade the same set of photographs in 3 seperate albums on FaceBook (Hydra - June 2011). Feel free to tag friends, lovers, fellow travelers, brothers and sisters, old and new Cohenites or BVB addicts...

Direct links:
Part 1: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set ... 1362291292
Part 2: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set ... 1362291292
Part 3: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set ... 1362291292

Maarten

2008 Manchester | Bruges | Amsterdam | London | 2x Brussels | Rotterdam |2x London
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Re: Hydra meetup in June 2011

Postby anneporter on Wed Jun 15, 2011 1:20 pm

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Re: Hydra meetup in June 2011

Postby lizzytysh on Wed Jun 15, 2011 2:07 pm

Thanks, Maarten :D !

Looking forward to YOURS, too, Anne 8) ! It'll take some time before I can access either of yours on FB. Thanks in advance, though, Anne :D !
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Re: Hydra meetup in June 2011

Postby Andrew (Darby) on Thu Jun 16, 2011 2:53 am

Lord Mickey of One wrote:You were much missed, Andy.

Thank you, Michael... nice of you to say so. :D

My envy certainly reached its limits from 'various positions'! ;-)

Cheers,
Andrew :)
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I only sing the tunes
The sadness of the seasons
The madness of the moons'
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Re: Hydra meetup in June 2011

Postby Wybe on Thu Jun 16, 2011 1:32 pm

Greetings from the last Cohenites on Hydra,
Henning and Elke
Joe and Frauke Costello
Willy and Wijbe

What happens on Hydra stays on Hydra
2008 -- Brugge, Amsterdam, London, Berlin, Helsinki, Oberhausen, Rotterdam -- 2008
2009 -- Antwerpen, Venice, Barcelona .-- 2009
2010 -- 2 x Gent, Lille, 2x Las Vegas, -- 2010
2012 -- Gent, 2 x Amsterdam, Dublin, Verona -- 2012
2013 -- Pula, Rotterdam -- 2013
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Re: Hydra meetup in June 2011

Postby lizzytysh on Thu Jun 16, 2011 1:35 pm

:lol: LOL :lol: ~ Yeah, we sure got a wild bunch there!!
Frauke? Photos please... :):):) [Joe ;-) !]
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Re: Hydra meetup in June 2011

Postby jarkko on Thu Jun 16, 2011 3:23 pm

http://au.news.yahoo.com/thewest/travel ... spiration/


Hydra is heart and soul of poetic inspiration

STEPHEN SCOURFIELD, TRAVEL EDITOR, The West Australian
June 16, 2011, 12:30 pm

Behind is the rise of the hills, homes in layers. For Hydra is a steep island of quietly clopping donkeys - soft-nosed and ridden side-saddle, carrying everything from tourists' luggage to new fridges up hundreds of steps.

When Leonard Cohen arrived on the Greek island of Hydra in the 1960s, there were no cars, no motorbikes and no overhead wires.

A two-hour ferry ride from Athens, it became a place to write songs and poetry, and fall into the rhythms of the Greek way of life.

To look up and see an unencumbered sky and write the words "like a bird on a wire, like a drunk in a midnight choir, I have tried in my way to be free", reflecting on his life, and those around him.

Cohen wrote wonderful poetry here; the forms and cadence of Greek music show in some of his songs. And he met Marianne, a beautiful and intelligent young woman who came to life in his songs.

Hydra still has no cars or motorbikes and though it now has overhead wires, its rhythm still creates an appreciation of life itself - of the moment. It coaxes creative thought.

It is a place still much as it has been for hundreds of years, with the pretty curve of the harbour at its heart. Vessels tied up in lines range from traditional timber fishing and sponge boats to hire yachts, pulled stern-to.

We sit on the quayside in blue chairs at tables for Greek salad, marinated sardines, perhaps an ouzo or Alpha or Mythos beer on the quayside.

The rows of shops feature jewellery and fabric work by island designers.

A place of animated Greek conversation, as much hand as voice, squares with orange and lemon trees, the mew of cats, a sense of humanity and a certain decorum, old men herding goats in the sage meadows above, and the ringing of church bells.

It is a place of narrow alleyways and stone steps, whitewashed buildings, shuttered windows and blue doors leading to private lives.

Leonard Cohen's three-storey whitewashed house had no electricity or running water, but buying it for $US1500 six days after his 26th birthday, from money left by his deceased grandmother, shows Hydra's emotional magnetism. It was a commitment that surprised even his closest friends.

He wrote to his mother: "I suppose it's about 200 years old and many generations of seamen must have lived here. I will do a little work on it every year and in a few years it will be a mansion . . . I live on a hill and life has been going on here exactly the same for hundreds of years. All through the day you hear the calls of the street vendors and they are really rather musical . . . I get up around seven generally and work till about noon."

Leonard could be describing my day, my room, this moment.

My brief home on Hydra is Hydroussos Hotel, an old mansion which still feels like a sea captain's home. It has 40 rooms, all set around a courtyard. The house was the work of a great Greek architect, Aris Konstantinidis, in the traditional style of the Leousis mansion. The walls are thick stone and whitewashed, the wooden shutters, to close during siesta, are dark grey. There are many subtle changes of level, marble floors and stairs and sturdy plumbing. The drawing rooms are much as they would have been, with portraits, antique furniture, heavy framed mirrors and armchairs. And for my three nights, with breakfasts, I have paid $260 (�).

Hydroussos Hotel faces the little Votsi Square, with its lemon trees and cats, and donkeys tied in a nose-to-tail row. To one side is Five Prime Ministers Square (for the island has produced these, one Greek president and numerous ministers) and it is all surrounded by old family homes.

And, as I sit here in the courtyard, shaded and cooled by the breeze, I know that Sophia Loren did, too, in the film Boy on a Dolphin, only she didn't have wireless internet connecting her to a world that already seems far away, though there is an old cosmopolitan feel here and Hydra has never been a backwater.

The island belonged to Venice from 1204 and 1566, and was part of the Ottoman Empire from 1566 to 1821. Hydriots are seafarers; they built big ships and this became an important commercial port, particularly in a lucrative period of trading between the Aegean and Black seas. By the turn of the 19th century, Hydra was trading as far as France, Spain and the Americas - the captains' mansions testify to the island's shipping prosperity.

By the time of the 1821 Greek Revolution, there were 27,000 residents, living mainly from the sea. And there were more than 150 warships armed with 2500 cannons, crewed by 6000 hardened seamen; a battle-ready fleet. During the revolution, the fleets of Hydra and the other two naval islands of Psara and Spetses took control of the eastern Aegean from the Ottomans.

Some of the history is shown in the Historical Archives Museum on the waterfront, and there are beautiful icons and rare books at the Byzantine or Ecclesiastical Museum of Hydra, at Cathedral of Hydra, also called Church of Dormition, Monastery of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary.

The days pass with a different pace. Sleeping behind shutters until there is the early morning conversation of locals going about their business. Breakfast in the courtyard, a stroll around the harbour, Greek coffee; hot or frappe, sweet and with ice.

But Hydra is also a wonderful place to walk. East and west from the town there is a wide, paved path, and for more serious hikers, footpaths lace the hills and coast of this 32km-long island. One day I walk east to the next village, Mandraki, then hike up into the hills, following a footpath past three monasteries. They perch high and dramatically on peaks, overlooking the terraced valleys.

We walk three or four kilometres either way out of the town of Hydra along wide stone paths that follow cliffs, high above the sea, and then drop down to pebble swimming beaches, or down stone stairs to flat rock and a ladder into the deep turquoise clear water. Lunch at an open cafe. More of that Greek salad, with wonderfully soft, ripe tomatoes, cucumbers that taste of something, fetta and crusty bread to mop the olive oil.

And then siesta. In much of Greece, things go quiet at 3pm. And then we all start moving again, slowly and quietly in the late afternoon, and today we walk high up in to the hills to look down on to the heart- shaped harbour as the sun fades. It is 8.30pm, and by the time we walk back down it is 10 and we are ready for dinner. A Greek salad is $6.80, a beer $3.40.

And then it is night again. A family of 12 arrive at 10.30 for dinner, eating with much fun and gesticulation, as the waiters carry off the children to show them this and that, attentive and showing kindnesses.

I've known for a long time of the importance of Hydra for Leonard Cohen - for not the effect it had on his poetry and lyrics (as is often written), but for the space it created, into which he gently poured them. The potential of this is not lost on me as I write this. And I struggle to write this. Usually I just write and move on; it's what I have always done. But Hydra flummoxes me. It demands a different pace; a different thought. A longer time to change from my own to its rhythm.

Just once, it feels like somewhere I should be longer.

·At Hydroussos Hotel, I paid $256 (�) for a room for two for three nights, including breakfasts. ·An average lunch or evening meal for two with drinks in Hydra cost about $40
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Re: Hydra meetup in June 2011

Postby bridger15 on Thu Jun 16, 2011 7:15 pm

Wybe wrote:What happens on Hydra stays on Hydra

Well, I hope not. I am eagerly awaiting one of your magnificent slideshows capturing your Hydra adventure.
Please hurry home (safe travels, of course) and get to work. :D

---Arlene
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2010-Gothenburg|Berlin|Ghentx2|Oaklandx2|Portland|LVegasx2
2012-Austinx2|Denver|Los Ang|Seattle|Portland

Arlene's Leonard Cohen Scrapbook http://onboogiestreet.blogspot.com
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Re: Hydra meetup in June 2011

Postby majmunka on Thu Jun 16, 2011 8:42 pm

My Hydra photos on FB:

(feel free to tag yourself)
https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set ... 1139004024

or the same album on picasa:
https://picasaweb.google.com/maevabt/Le ... pHydra2011

We left Hydra on Tuesday and tried to change our air tickets from Wednesday to Tuesday. It was possible but the cost was just too high, 141 Eur per tickets so we decided against it. Went to search a hotel somewhere not too far from the airport but the one we chose was full. We met some very kind local people and they recommended a nice resort town Voula. Voula is on the route of the Pyraeus-airport bus (X96), 20-25 minutes from the airport. Felt a bit fated finding a nice seaside hotel named Galini Palace (I traveled with Gallina :)), 30 Eur/person for a beautiful room with view and breakfast. We spent the rest of the day and the next half day swimming and walking on the beach (across not the sand but pebbles :)), happy.
Next time we might do this way intentionally. ;-)
There will be a next time, that's sure. Hydra and you, friends, were everything I dreamed of and more.

Eva
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Re: Hydra meetup in June 2011

Postby joyezekiel on Fri Jun 17, 2011 4:08 am

bridger15 wrote:
Wybe wrote:What happens on Hydra stays on Hydra

Well, I hope not. I am eagerly awaiting one of your magnificent slideshows capturing your Hydra adventure.
Please hurry home (safe travels, of course) and get to work. :D

---Arlene


Agreed Arlene..... we want to know everything!

Joy
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Re: Hydra meetup 2011 - The Report

Postby jarkko on Sun Jun 19, 2011 12:11 am

More than 300 photos by Eija have now been uploaded to http://cohen.1g.fi/kuvat/Hydra%202011/
All photos are available in three sizes, from thumbnail to original camera size.
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