Recently, we visited Tris Elies, a village nestled in a corner of the Troodos mountains. We stayed in an agrotourist lodge run by a really cool lady called kiria Androulla, who renovated an old estate house into a beautiful traditional haven of peace and serenity.
This is an area of Troodos I had never really explored before. It is here that my great-grandfather travelled to from Lefkosia with his daughter, riding on the back of a donkey through the villages of Kalopanagiotis, Kaminarka, Tris Elies, to buy walnut wood for his carpentry work.
The village was very quiet. There are only a few old people still living there.
From our balcony, they looked like little cracked brushtrokes on a quaint wintry backdrop: the village priest harvesting the olives from the trees in the church courtyard, the plump old lady with her flowey headscarf carrying a massive log on her shoulder, the few shrunken, bent old women and men sitting inside the coffeshop, the mustashioed grocer unlocking his tiny dark dusty store.
From the balcony perspective, there seems to be something aesthetically sound about the way the village is built- it is always the case with houses packed tightly on slopes; I found the view very satisfying.
We walked along the nature trail that starts by the village. It was a beautiful, crisp morning, and it took us ages to get to the end because we stopped every two seconds to take pictures or look at things.
There were grapes hanging from vines in people's gardens, but there were also vines growing wild.
We passed by two Venetian bridges, covered in brown plane tree leaves.
We spent a long time admiring the wild cyclamen emerging from among the leaves and cracks in the rocks.
We saw many trees on the way: some wild, like latzia, the Cypriot oak tree, and some cultivated, like this lotus tree.
We admired the colours and textures of winter.
By the time we were finally homeward bound, it started raining. We got soaked and breathed in the smell of fresh pines and wet earth.
We went home to our fireplace and wine, and made a warm plate of food.