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Wednesday, 21 October 2009

In Bermuda

I'm back in Bermuda, trying hard not to make comparisons with Corfu, because I love both islands. If I were a passenger on a cruise ship, I'd much prefer to dock at Bermuda, because the facilities and arrangements for visitors are far superior. Having said that, many visitors preferred it when the cruise ships docked at St. George's rather than at Dockyard.

In Bermuda there is no rubbish to be seen,all the buildings are beautiful, there are no eye-sores, there is a proper shuttle service into town, the signs are helpful and clear. Visitors are really made to feel important and welcome.

A Corfiot at Elbow Beach

Bermuda is celebrating 400 years of its history, which began in 1609. It's quite a helpful yardstick, 400 years, from the time it was an uninhabited island. It's about the same amount of time that the Ottoman Turks occupied Greek territory, and that the Venetians held Corfu.

When you look at Bermuda, and consider how long a period 400 years really is, and what has been achieved in that time, then you begin to understand how long parts of Modern Greece were under the Ottomans or the Venetians.

I'm staying in an amazing converted boathouse at Spanish Point, with the waves lapping at the bedroom window.

I can't complain, except for the fact that I have a tight deadline to correct the final proofs of my book "The Ionian Islands and Epirus, A Cultural History" and to prepare the very complicated index. I'm only on page 3. It won't be published until early in 2010. It should have been out this month. That's why I've got a little touch of the Bermuda blues.

Bermuda has a greater claim to being the inspiration for Shakespeare's "The Tempest" than Corfu does. That particular argument is going to run for a long time.

John William Waterhouse, Miranda, The Tempest

A wonderful recording of the music of Thomas Linley the younger