Friday, October 26, 2007

Day 20 - Have you heard the latest?

Today, we go for our weekly drive to collect drinking water from the island’s community water-well. We can no longer quench out thirst by pouring a glass of water from the kitchen tap - you can almost walk on the island’s tap water due to its high salt content. Instead, we lug enough empty bottles to collect 45 litres of drinking water for the week.

These visits are a great way to catch up on the gossip, as the locals huddle around the well’s four taps framed in white marble. The power of the local grapevine outranks the power of the BBC in its ability to spread news. If you hung a new item of clothing on your washing line that morning, it would be known across the island by 6pm. If you received a parcel at the post office, it would be known across the island by 3pm. And if you agreed to go on a date with a new admirer, it would be known across the island before you even hung the phone up.

This is not the place to live if you value any form of personal privacy. Nicole’s sister once proclaimed that she had to stop living here because she was sick of her neighbours knowing the precise time of day she burped or farted.

Welcome to Kalymnos, where There’s No Business Like Your Business!

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