Monday, October 16, 2006

Lefkara visit

On Saturday we took our friends to the village of Lefkara, about half an hour's drive from Larnaka, and a little way up in the mountains. It's a popular tourist spot, traditional home of Lefkara lace, a form of embroidery that is the basis of tablecloths and other linen goods. There is also hand-made silver, some of which is remarkably good value as it's priced by weight rather than by the amount of work that goes into it.

We parked at the beginning of the main village of 'Pano Lefkara' (roughly: 'Upper Lefkara') and walked to the far end, where there's a Greek Orthodox Church.

It was closed - and some of us were wearing shorts, anyway, so wouldn't have been allowed in - but the yard outside has some good views over the mountains.

Then we wandered back and looked at some of the shops. Of course, everyone invited us in to look at their work, and what they had to sell, 'no obligation' - and offered us vast discounts. It's not an unpleasant hard sell as can happen in some other countries, but can be a bit wearing. Our friends did buy one small item but otherwise we laughed, and thanked the shopkeepers, and moved on.

Because it's now out of season, there weren't dozens of women sitting in doorways embroidering, as happens in the summer, but we did see this lady who demonstrated her work, and said I could take a photo:

By this time it was nearly one o'clock, so we stopped at an outdoor restaurant and had some halloumi, pitta and salad for lunch. Very pleasant, although there were threatening clouds overhead, and it had evidently rained quite heavily shortly before we arrived.

On the way back to the car, we saw prickly pear cactus plants, laden with fruit:

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