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Sleeping with spiders. Solo of Achaia.

υπνοε παρέα με αραχνες

Friday, June 24, 2022

16:30 Giannis rang the doorbell of my house. We left Patras together to find Vassilis in Aigios and from there the three of us would leave to find the others in Solos, a mountain village in the prefecture of Achaia.

Built at an altitude of 1,050 meters on the northern slopes of Mount Krathis, the foothills of the Aronians, it is one of the most mountainous settlements in Achaia. For the sake of history, it is worth mentioning that the inhabitants of Solos, as well as the surrounding villages, actively participated in the revolution of 1821. chieftain Anagnostis Giannopoulos or Patzos from the village of Peristera Kalavryton, in his autobiography extensively mentions the eulogies and other ceremonies during the departure of the armed from the villages of Peristera, Mesorrougi and Solo for the siege of Tripoli at the end of March 1821.

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After about two hours we arrived at the place where we would set up the tents. Nikos and Sir were already waiting for us there.

Nikos, Giannis, Ser and Vassilis had already started setting up their tents. It was already 19:00 when I made the decision that I will not sleep in the tent I had in my backpack. Date with the soil again.

A folding shovel with a pickaxe specially for camping occasions and a hand saw that also folds up to fit with the rest of the stuff in the backpack. Wood from fallen tree trunks was just what I needed to build the frame of the lodge.

The forest consists mainly of fir and less of pine and in various places there is scattered fern. Night came and found me with my head torch gathering fern to cover the roof until I stopped when it got dark due to fatigue.

ελευθερο κάμπινγκ ελλαδα free camping in greece

Vasilis cooked penne with red sauce in the large aluminum pot. We ate and all went together to wash the dishes so that they would be ready for the next cooking.

We all sat together on the wooden benches that previously existed in the area with ouzo and lemonade.

Somewhere in the eighth glass suddenly in the forest we hear a noise which disappeared and came back again after a few seconds. So a 72 Vespa emerges from the dark forest, it was Antonis. Collector model in pistachio color, one of only forty models available in Greece with nice brown leather saddle. Antonis actually surprised us with his appearance as until a while ago we all thought that he would not come.

ελευθερο κάμπινγκ ελλαδα free camping in greece

Here I must mention the honorable effort of Antonis to bring us a portable styrofoam cooler on the front grill of the Vespa. But what Antonis had not calculated was that when darkness would come, as it did, the refrigerator would cover part of the front light, as a result of which he could not see in front of him. Good ending and all is well!

Until we went to bed we drank, talked and listened to music. At one point I went to my accommodation to light the oil lamp that I almost always carry with me. Then I saw on my sheet dozens of large black spiders, wherever I turned my gaze I saw spiders everywhere. I was curious if they would mind me sleeping later. My question was solved as they never bothered me even though they surrounded me all night. Only one mosquito in the morning was trying but after an hour of fighting he couldn't get what he wanted.

Saturday, June 25, 2022

I have been awake since daylight. Opening my eyes I see the thatch I have for a ceiling among the green ferns. Surrounded by the beautiful forest, birds are chirping and in the distance you can hear water flowing. Soil and forest create rivers of scents. Colors you are not used to, like waking up in a dream. I really don't know how I could describe what I saw in combination with all my senses.

ελευθερο κάμπινγκ ελλαδα free camping in greece

I got out of bed and added fern to the roof to patch some holes. After I did that I found the others who lived about a hundred meters away from me. I still don't know what it is that makes me stand out in isolation.

I cooked fried eggs for Sir and boiled eggs for me and Vasilis. In a short time, Antonis arrived with Jenny and Panagiotis. The four of us left for a walk in the forest and a swim in the river where it took us about an hour to get there. The river here in the mountain is very cold. My ankles froze and hurt from the low temperature of the water there.

ελευθερο κάμπινγκ ελλαδα free camping in greece

ελευθερο κάμπινγκ ελλαδα free camping in greece

ελευθερο κάμπινγκ ελλαδα free camping in greece

After bathing in the river we made our way back. Panagiotis and I decided to take a different route back. We cut our way through the long uphills into the heart of the forest walking between towering fir trees that cast thick shadows.

ελευθερο κάμπινγκ ελλαδα free camping in greece

On this route we found the attempt of some to build a wooden hut. Her location in my opinion was perfect, away from prying eyes and relatively close to the river. Nikos had informed me about this hut. He had told me that he had seen the children in that area and that they had even brought with them a portable machine that turns the logs into squares. He even told me that this machine, unfortunately for them, did not work due to some damage. I am very curious if the next time I visit the site they will have progressed towards the completion of the construction. Guys, if you're reading this, I really like what you're doing and I hope you pull it off.

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After looking for a while at the logs they had gathered, we continued on our way to the place where we had camped without having any knowledge of its exact location. In short, we had lost our bearings. I remember the expression and words of Panagiotis telling me and answering him.

- Pan: I have 3% battery on my cell phone for the gps

- Me: too!

As soon as I managed to look at the map a bit, the cell phone ran out of battery. We started moving about into the woods and flirted with getting lost. We found ourselves after many uphills on a dirt road and based on logic alone or luck we managed to find the right way back.

ελευθερο κάμπινγκ ελλαδα free camping in greece

When we arrived we were visited by Meli who brought pork, we made it a stew for lunch. Shortly, Nikolas arrived with Mari and they set up a small spare tent that I almost always have with me.

ελευθερο κάμπινγκ ελλαδα free camping in greece

Nikos with Giannis, Nikolas and Ser had indulged themselves at the table.

επιτραπέζια παιχνιδια

Hammocks were set up since many of us prefer them for sleeping at night.

ελευθερο κάμπινγκ ελλαδα free camping in greece

ελευθερο κάμπινγκ ελλαδα free camping in greece

The evening came and now we were all sitting together and playing Palermo, blue stories and telling stories that scarred us, the time arrived at three in the morning. The conversation took global and philosophical dimensions until at some point we all went to bed.

Clack clack was heard in the forest, Antonis was throwing cloves of garlic. We were all laughing, each from his own stage but the laughter could be heard everywhere in the night.

Sunday, June 26

I woke up last at three in the afternoon. Not even the sunlight managed to wake me up any earlier than it was persistently entering between the cracks of the reedbed. Meli, Nikolas and Giannis went down to the river. While they were gone, I took over the cooking of lentils in the large pot. I have never cooked for so many people in my life, however you do it comes with a certain responsibility.

ελευθερο κάμπινγκ ελλαδα free camping in greece μαγειρευοντας στη φυση

Until the lentils were done, I put music on the speaker, creating an outdoor music festival atmosphere.

ελευθερο κάμπινγκ ελλαδα free camping in greece

ελευθερο κάμπινγκ ελλαδα free camping in greece

ελευθερο κάμπινγκ ελλαδα free camping in greece

All went well with the lentil cooking and were duly honored by all the lentil lovers. Together with a little balsamic vinegar they are a treasure of taste.

ελευθερο κάμπινγκ ελλαδα free camping in greece

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