Wolfgang, April 2011
i came to matala in 1974, going by train from vienna through former yugoslavia, met a boy from berlin, i think his name was christian blum, who wanted to meet his girl friend in ios, a small cyclade island. i went with him there, but ios was filled with hundreds of rucksacks from all over the world, so i decided to sail to crete.
before leaving ios, christian gave me a ‘credit’ i paid back when i was back home in autumn!
many thanks, christian, for that!
after having reached iraklio - with its small working shops, where old men were making mostly things out of leather like boots, bags and sandals spending a raki to all of the rucksacks (the austrians they like best, because they had been the better nazi soldiers during ww II, they told me) - after 15 hours on a wooden ship called ‘cyclades’, i think, i travelled on by hitchhiking and the last miles i took an old but windy bus ( most of the windows were out of order, like the gear...) until i jumped out at matala’s bus stop station consisting out of one room. it was in late august at 5 p.m.
the fertile valley was full of four, five meter high bamboos or something like that. and nearly no house could be seen, only at the seafront i noticed some small, old houses, but i was too tired to have a look at the scenery. i sat down in the shadow of the bus station, leaning against the wall, it was a little bit windy but very hot, very quiet. nobody was there. no cretans no rucksacks, just me, that was matala for me!
i slept there until the next early morning, the sun taught me to take a bath in the sea. now i noticed the cave mountain, but no rucksacks...
just a few of them, italians, where sleeping in their bags on the beach, making good pasta in their big pots...
i spent a week there before hiking to lendas, in those days a better place than matala. nearly all matala caves had been big dustbins or stinking wc’s, only two or three of them were inhabited by a greek couple, two germans and some french guys, but i can’t remember their names.
i only remember one taverna in matala, lendas had two, one for breakfast and one for the evening, where you had to order in the morning your greek salad for the evening. did you forget it, you only could drink wine and probably bread...
from june 3rd until june 5th 2011 i will come to both places...
probably we can meet there