Total Pageviews

Monday 16 July 2012

Selection from 'Democracy Street' <Οδός Δημοκρατίας>

On Democracy Street, Ano Korakiana, Corfu
Democracy Street Οδός Δημοκρατίας Odos Dimokratias is the street that runs through the centre of Ano Korakiana, a village in the centre of Corfu, part of the Hellenic Republic of Greece - Άνω Κορακιάνα, Κέρκυρα, Ελληνική Δημοκρατία, Ἑλλάς. On Google maps the street is (2012) still called Επαρχιακή Οδός Αγίου Βασιλείου or St.Basil's Provincial Road - 39° 42.438', 19° 47.679', even though a name change occurred during the Regime of the Colonels - a tale that will be told in another place. I started this blog on 1 April 2007 with a reference to our home in Handsworth, Birmingham...and in the years since Linda and I have gone to and fro - πέρα δόθε - between two places of matching importance and on the blog indulged in the happy technology of hyperlinks - something not so possible in the written diaries I've kept since 1975.
My Birmingham - no mean city
I also use Democracy Street to explore my enduring interest in the working relationship of politicans and managers in local government - relationships that make democracy.
I also use it to record my interest in preserving, keeping on record, the television work of my stepfather, Jack Hargreaves...
...who among many other things was the inventor of an entertainment broadcast by Southern Television between 1959-1981 called Out of Town, commenting without sentiment or nostalgia on a growing disconnect between men and the land (see also Facebook) - On Parsonage Down. He also invented the children's programme 'How' - about which Richard Dawkins, years later, wrote:

I use the blog to speak of Greece, my feelings about the 'wondrous land', of memories of the Marble Emperor, and of Corfu Κέρκυρα and 'our' village - now and in history - especially the British Protectorate of the Ionian Islands between 1815-1864
I also speak of my allotment, Plot 14, on the Victoria Jubilee Allotments, subject of a ten year local campaign - 'small island in which I rejoice', 'worth a few onions and a turnip' - which continues.
I also write, have written papers on local government, on political skill - Owl, Fox, Donkey, Sheep...
Baddeley, S & James, K (1987) 'Owl, Fox, Donkey, Sheep: Political Skills for Managers', Management Education & Development, 18 (1) Spring, pp. 3-19
- and on Political-management Leadership and my preoccupation with agency - Internal Polity and information technology, the governance of cyberspace - Governmentality. Taught in different lands, most recently in Australia and New Zealand.
I dreamed of sailing on the sea. I think my mum and dad had taken the train from York to Scarborough in 1944 where perhaps they bought the toy boat. It's tin keel cut me. How? I remember the cut and I still have the small white scar on the inside of my right knee.
I remember days and months I've spent at sea in small boats, my first steps mentored by Denys Rayner who wrote:
In any reasonable weather it is the diminutive size of the yacht which makes long passages under sail such thrilling affairs, and one of the reasons why I, for one, find the smallest possible craft the most rewarding - as well as costing less.
- once crossing an ocean, other times voyaging in the Mediterranean, sailing to Athens from England and back, borrowing old photos from drawers and boxes.
Of course I write about cycling, about my Brompton folding bicycle. It's an indulgence I can enjoy parading - moral mobility - since I and my car conducted an amicable divorce.
I've explored family history - especially the more or less invisible one that took in my Dad and my maternal grandfather, grandpa Henry - both spies. Also his grandfather, Sir Henry and Mill End Dairy Farm in Clavering, Essex, where I was born in 1942.
I do voluntary work as lots do, because I get annoyed and excited about things - green spaces in cities including playing fields, allotments and parks, especially Handsworth Park - about whose early history I wrote an essay -  and Black Patch Park and now Lin and I and friends are running Handsworth Helping Hands (ditto Facebook), and all through runs the lovely catalogue of friends and neighbours, some fleeting, others lifelong, my family - odd and as we all admit semi-dysfunctional, therefore I suppose close to the norm, as if that mattered much. There's cat Flea and dog Oscar, who comes with me to Scotland, travels in my cycle pannier and stays with friends when we're away....
...and then there are parties and parties and parties - especially Easter, meetings, Carnival, encounters.... Lefteris, Natasha, Foti, Jim, Maria, Dimitra, Effie, Adoni, Aleko, Pavla and Andrea, Niko our Greek tutor, Nico and Sophia, Sebastiano, Katya and Thanassis, Mark and Sally, Paul and Cinta, Richard P, Paul again and Lula, John R, Rajinder, Ziggi, Denise, Robin, Tony and Helen, Karen, Emma, Phoebe, Liz and Matt, Danica, Kim, Tanya, Leslie and my cousins, my sister, my half-sisters and half-brother - Maria my late stepmother on the Greek side
Maria Roussen by Yiannis Moralis, her first husband
 - my mother Barbara Theodora in the Highlands which I've known as a visiting place since I first took the night sleeper from Euston to Inverness when I was 9 years old.
I'm 80% Scot. I relish the train labouring through Drumochter; I'm sad when going south it speeds up on passing the watershed between Dalwhinnie and Blair Atholl.
our children

and grandchild
Amy and Oliver
What else? The search for the 'letter' from Ano Korakiana prompted by Kostas Apergis,village historian and Thanassis Spingos, who runs Ano Korakiana's website. There are lots of entries on this subject. It revolves around the rather conditional relationship of Corfu with mother Greece, the story of the Ionian rizospasti, revealed by Eleni Calligas, and why for many years while celebrating the anniversary of  Greek Independence on 25 March neither Ano Korakiana nor Kinopiastes celebrate the anniversary of Corfu's 1864 enosis with the Republic in May.
Mother Greece over the Sea of Kerkyra
...and my enduring annoyance with bottled water and commodified philotemo, expressed in passionate anger by Maria Strani in The Pimping of Panorea
Το πούλημα της Πανωραίας 
Other pages:
A chance to talk about my stepfather Jack Hargreaves
On Bell Hill, Lydbrook
The realm of wonder
The banality of good - Η κοινοτοπια του καλου?
I entered the home of a women...German Occupation of Greece
Dimitra's 16th birthday party
What it means to be a Brummie
Carnival in Ano Korakiana, Corfu ~ Καρναβάλι, Άνω Κορακιάνα, Κέρκυρα
In the Highlands - "Love let us be true to one another"
Visit to Butrint
The best of all possible worlds
Written stuff
"'Like' is not strong enough"
Golden Dawn
Kevin Andrews - understanding blame for the Greek Civil War
What makes a village?
Ano Korakiana pastoral - friezes of Aristeidis, the village sculptor
Carnival Guignol and the King James Bible
Όλοι μαζί
Tour of Greece
Political-management leadership - negotiating the overlap
Managing in a political environment
Phew! Μολὼν λαβέ 
All of a sudden the fine weather's here
What the Greeks went through
The earth turns towards the sun - civil war
Beware the gentry when they get scared
Seeking Sir Henry in British Columbia
A ladybird on my specs
Bacon and eggs
Μόνο αν κερδίσουμε την κοινωνία
Nightmares of the contented
Η γεωγραφία της φοροδιαφυγής
Voyage to England
Learning Greek «Η ζωή είναι δύσκολη»
"The horror" ~ how corruption works
Third visit to Greece
My mother in Ano Korakiana
At Kernovel
Πλήρης ημερών ~ farewell to mum
Cycling to the top of Mount Pantokrator
"..while there's moonlight and music and love and romance"
A missing commentary
Work and play ~ learning about the rizospasti
A bumblebee in the cockpit
She got married
"No, don't blush"
"Να μη γίνει η Κορακιάνα "μη-κοινότητα"..."
Another village - Distomo
Kanun and the public law of Europe
A richer dust concealed
"...Think of the effect of your work on other people's views"
Our shed and all it contains
A walk in the snow
Putting cycling on the map
Βρεκεκεκέξ κοάξ κοάξ
On such a day as this
Small island in which I rejoice - allotments
Power cuts in Ano Korakiana
Dreams and scorpions in the woodpile
Pontikonisi ~ being economic with the truth
The blue of the sea we've left behind
Golden Dawn
Sept 2017 - my allotment after 6 years
Jan 2018 Christmas in the Village

New Zealand

Dancing at Effie's and Adoni's
*** ***
The sun was out for several hours on Sunday and I had time to mend the re-roof our garden shed and extend the allotment shed veranda, and feel warm especially as more or less rain is forecast for the rest of the week and I have a 'to do' list.
Pual McGovern in Ag.Ioannis has sent me a circular about a collaboration between his company OCAY - which started and runs Agiotfest - and the photo club (Photoleke Η Φωτογραφική Λέσχη Κέρκυρας ΦΩΤΟ.ΛΕ.ΚΕ.) and the Corfu Environmental Initiative NGO (EcoCorfu) - a non-profit organisation to help needy people and improve the environment. The photo club's Journey of Life exhibition opens 18th Jul-3rd Oct'12 at the Asian Art Museum at the Palace of St. Michael & St. George in Corfu Town (see also this facebook page - Επιτροπής Αισθητικής Δήμου Κέρκυρας Committee for the Beauty of the Municipality of Corfu with images and conversations - in Greek -relating to improving the environment)
Young Tiger - we sailed her across the Atlantic


  1. Very helpful summary and retrospective selection. What a contribution you have made in so many areas that matter! Keep it going. Don't stop here.

  2. Yes, I totally agree with Corfu Bluesman...


Back numbers

Simon Baddeley