Sunday morning in the Saint Achilles island in the small Prespa Lake and we take a walk on its sunny hills. A route that starts from the church of St. George on the first hill and ends to the big white cross on the last hill of the island. Visitors are coming in groups to see the basilica church of St. Achilles and the other Byzantine monuments and everywhere you can hear their echo.
But, the island holds many surprises, especially if local feasts are near. As I stop here and there to photograph some landscapes and nature scenes, three people that wear traditional apparels, are passing by in front of me. I look them amazed. It’s like a movie scene. After a while, a gentle lady that also wears a traditional outfit and holds a wooden icon of Mother Mary stops to talk with me. Mother Mary’s birth was celebrated two days before (November 21st) and these people came from many different places of Greece to make a ceremony in the small church of Mother Mary that locates in an isolated shore of the island and a local feast. More people traditionally dressed and a priest also appears, say hello and walk down the hills. The bells of the church ring continuously. People are gathered in the central spot of the island start to celebrate and dance to the rhythm of traditional music.
Back there, in the distant hills under the bright sun everyone enjoys capturing the magnificent scenery and the various species that live there, listening the feasting notes of this – in other days – lonely land.