Wandering through Time – Sifnos island
The Greek island of Sifnos is crisscrossed with a myriad of footpaths that have existed for thousands of years. For many centuries the main transportation system of the island, these paths are still used by local inhabitants and their donkeys. They are also accessible to anyone with the inclination to wander along them, providing a unique perspective of the landscape of the entire island and an opportunity to peer deep into history.
Kastro, the ancient capital of Sifnos, has been continually inhabited for 3000 years. More than 5000 years ago, silver and gold were mined at numerous locations on the island. Millennia of history are everywhere, hanging in the air. Here, the present and the past exist together. Wandering over hills and through valleys, where time is only marked by ancient stone walls and smoothed marble footpaths, the present mixes with the past. The farmer one encounters riding his donkey could exist now or hundreds of years ago. When asked the age of buildings, walls, pathways and other artifacts, the only answer one hears is, “Old.” No one knows how old. These things have always been part of the landscape and the lives of the people, and are very much part of the present. This seemingly seamless merging of thousands of years of history is on display for all those Wandering through Time.
©Jim Blomfield. All rights reserved.