[ilds] ILDS Digest, Vol 42, Issue 8_the blue really begins in the Aegean

Sumantra Nag sumantranag at gmail.com
Sat Sep 11 00:25:11 PDT 2010

"But I have to say that the blue really begins in the Aegean around Rhodes 
and Crete."

My wife, my younger son and I visited Crete for a week in 2007 from India 
and we can say that the intense blue of the sea certainly struck us on all 
the shores of the island which we visited, and made seabathing all the more 
attractive at each different beach! The glistening blue of the Aegean is 
noticeable if compared for instance with the Mediterranean off the southern 
coast of Spain where we were two years earlier in 2005. While in Crete, we 
travelled by catamaran to Santorini for a day and although you can't see the 
sea well enough on this short journey, the sight of the caldera at Santorini 
also brings the blue into prominence. Yes the Aegean is magically blue.

It is a long time since I read South Wind. I remember the characters more 
than the descriptions of landscape, and the extract given by Wilson, Frazer 
is captivating ("...He saw the bluffs of feathery pumice, the lava 
precipices--frozen cataracts of white, black, blood red, pale grey and 
sombre brown, smeared over with a vitreous enamel of obsidian or pierced by 
oily, writhing dykes that blazed with metallic scintillations.")

I recall the Duke (?) on the island in South Wind who creates "ancient" 
sculpture for gullible Americans. He speaks about a sage like teacher of his 
who advised him about life by saying (roughly)....

'Don't delve too deep into the past for it will make you derivative; don't 
delve too deep into yourself because it will make you introspective. But 
delve deep into the living world and forge your own links with it. Then you 
will be unassailable.'

I'm sure someone can give the correct text from South Wind!

Best wishes

>> Re Durrell and Douglas I like the idea posted recently regarding 'where 
>> the blue really begins' which suggests that Durrell was acknowledging 
>> Douglas but moving beyond Italy to Greece. It may have been unconscious, 
>> but it is a nice idea anyway. Durrell owed a fair bit to Norman Douglas. 
>> Old Calabria and South Wind are great reads. But I have to say that the 
>> blue really begins in the Aegean around Rhodes and Crete.
>> David 

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