2012. I got back on the road and was soon driving through the unlovely outskirts of Paphos. But the weather was glorious and the ubiquitous oleander leant some colour to the motorway.
I stopped for fuel and skirted round the back of Paphos and headed for Polis. The road fairly swoops down the long Chrysokou valley and looked very different when we made this journey in foul weather in February 2011 (see Polis in February).
On reaching Polis tys Chrysokou - to give it the full name - I was determined to have a look at the Archeological Museum, which we had missed in the torrential rain in Feb 2011. I got myself into another one of those furious thrashing-round a-foreign-town rages following signs for a museum that stubbornly failed to materialise. After fruitless searching in the increasing heat I eventually asked a florist I must have passed four times. She pointed back up the street I had just been directed down by an ancient sign and I eventually found the museum. But I remember little or nothing about it.
I went and bought supplies for my trip up the mountains - water, slices of loin of pork, big fat breadsticks, crisps and after standing looking at a hundred different sorts of feta, a pack of processed rounds of goat cheese and local cherries that were probably from Kampos. The young woman at the till was holding her throat and looking miserably ill. I touched my throat in sympathy and said, "Try some whiskey, it's good for colds.' She smiled indulgently at me.
I got back into the baking car and headed out to the road to Pomos. In Feb 2011 it rained constantly when we went out on this road to look for a fish restaurant that was inevitably closed. The road was practically submerged by the deluge and pickups racing through it chucked great muddy gouts of water over our pathetic rental car. Today it could not have been more different.
The road runs on the sea side of the little coastal strip increasingly taken over by villa development. Holdout smallholders were tending crops in polytunnels but I got the feeling it was only a matter of time before someone like the huge Aristo Developers would make them an offer they couldn't refuse.
I pulled up onto the scruffy grey beach to take some photos looking back towards Cape Arnaoutis and of the few plants growing on the sand and pebbles.
There are still gaps on the beach-side of the road and the views get more interesting as you approach Pomos. Strange to see the flash new villas jammed in next to the old single storey fisherman and peasant houses and at one point an extravagantly dilapidated dove cot made out of decaying pallets.
I had been twice to the Kanali Fish Restaurant on my last stay in Cyprus as a stopover after the long drive from Nicosia to Pyrgos and then up and around the Kokkina enclave.
I can't vouch for the fish as I had salads but the setting is excellent: the terrace has stunning views of the little harbour and over the bay to Kokkina. On my second stop we watched a Green Turtle, which is resident in the bay in June, feeding on sea grass (there is plenty washed up on the beaches hearabouts) near the harbour mouth.
The waiter, searching the water with his intense black eyes, told us that many people have tried to catch the turtle ' but I think she is clever'. Apparently some swimmers have been frightened by the turtle surfacing near them although when one approached she/he moved discretely away further into the bay.
Trying to capture the great beast on camera from the restaurant terrace provided some diversion. The thought of standing on the blindingly white breakwater was too much given the absolutely remorseless heat.
Towards Pomos the spurs from the mountains reach the sea and there are some pleasant bays. The sea looked fantastic and I didn't see a single tourist, it still being early in the season. But the pace of development looks relentless. However, it is brought to an abrupt halt as the coast approaches the Kokkina enclave.
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