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  • © Andreas Brokalakis
Crete as we Live it

Stelios of "Dounias" (Drakona, Keramia)

Stelios of "Dounias" lives and works in Drakona, Keramia somewhere high up in 600m altitude on Lefka Ori's mountainside. I'm thinking that if dragons existed, this is where they would live. 

Entering the tavern, we find Stelios. He is carrying a tray on his hands. Hastily, he shows us (to) an empty table by the stove. It's winter and you can hear the heavy rain

Coming from Athens, Alex is thrilled with the folklore of the atmosphere as a whole."What is askolibri?" "What is boureki?". "I had once been at a cretan tavern in Athens but there were no such things" she says. She starts laughing as soon as she realizes the way it sounded. 

Stelios comes smiling with a bowl in his hands. "Wine" I say. "Romeiko only" he answers abruptly. "Perfect!" I comment. He starts reciting all sorts of traditional delicacies, most of which we are tempted by and we succumb to after their highly detailed description. At that point, Alex, feeling rather hungry, says:"I would like a greek salad!" Suddenly Stelios knits his brows and pointing his finger towards her asks: 

"Do you know of any tomatoes that come out in winter?" Alex freezes. She hadn't expected such a reaction from the kind folklore Stelios. There is a pause. We look at each other and burst into laughter. Stelios as well. "I'll fetch the wine" he says and leaves walking in his distinctive frisky way.

Story: Vassilis Charitakis

Photo: Andreas Brokalakis

Translation to english: Sofia Agatzioti