No, not a complaint about Cyprus at all. Rather the reverse.
When one lives in the same place, particularly when one is not an adventurous soul, nor even particularly active, one tends to tread the same paths, and become almost unaware of one's surroundings. I have my regular walks to the Froutaria, and the local small supermarket; I have less frequent walks in the direction of St Helena's Church, or into town for the Post Office, or Larnaka Community Church. We walk to local friends' houses, too. But those routes are not particularly picturesque, and any changes are only gradual... so, after nearly five years in this house, I tend not to notice my surroundings any more.
Around noon today I realised I should probably pop out and buy some milk. The bakeries are open on Sundays, but their prices are rather higher than that of the supermarkets - and since I didn't go out at all yesterday, I thought I might just stretch my legs... then, as I left the house, I had a hankering for a slightly longer walk. I remembered that I hadn't been to the Thrift Store for a few months. I don't enjoy shopping, but I do like popping into second-hand places now and again...
So, instead of turning left, I turned right and headed towards the Thrift Store. And was struck, immediately, by the amount of green everywhere - it's rained quite a bit recently - and, even more, the vibrant colours. March, I remembered, is 'yellow month' - or so they used to say. I've written about that before. I had my camera with me, and whipped it out to take a shot of my favourite kind of weeds, which are blooming just about everywhere at present:
With so much rain, everything looks cleaner than usual, too.
I take the citrus trees for granted after over thirteen years in Cyprus, but I love the scent of blossom.. which, oddly enough, is present at the same time as fruit:
It wasn't just yellows that struck me. The route I was walking had several front gardens (yards), some of which hosted a gorgeous display of flowers. Hard to do them justice, of course:
Then I was struck (not, thankfully, literally) by this huge cactus which appears to have some kind of blossoming too:
I saw some mespila (loquat) trees, still green but with the promise of fruit in another month or so:
They made me feel almost nostalgic for our old garden, which sported two of them.. until I remembered what a pain it was removing the large stones, leaving a relatively small amount of flesh, in order to make jam that I didn't even like that much.
I saw this bush - yellow with tinges of pink. I don't even like pink much, but it's a very spring-like colour, and I thought the effect rather pretty:
Most surprising of all was this tree, covered with bright pink blossom:
It looked almost like an English tree. We were used to the white almond blossom at our old house - our neighbours had some almond trees, but they bloomed rather earlier than this. I'm not sure I remember seeing such amazing blossom in Cyprus before.
I put my camera away when I reached the Thrift Store, and browsed around for ten minutes or so. I found a couple of books I liked - one simply can't have too many, and they're only 50c each - but nothing else. Then I continued up the road, seeing and marvelling at more gorgeous trees and flowers, enjoying them for the moment rather than capturing on my camera. I knew that my photos - even enhanced on the computer - could not begin to do justice to the glorious, abundant works of art all around me.
I wondered, too, how anyone can see such amazing evidence of the Master Artist at work, yet still believe that such beauty came into being entirely by chance...
(Oh, and I did eventually get full circle to Orhpanides Express, and bought my milk).