Limni River Picnic Under the Trees

After leaving the upper Preveli Monastery, we stopped at an overlook to check out Preveli Beach and the famous Palm Forest. At that moment the beach went from a maybe to an absolutely must go. We had to drive back down the mountain we had come up, pass the lower monastery, and then turn at the ancient footbridge over the Limni River to start on the road to Preveli Beach; the same beach that the submarine had stopped near to save the Brit, Aussie, and New Zealand soldiers.

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It was a dusty dirt road with scattered gravel and a few potholes. The little Limni River was hidden under the branches of plane, pine, and olive trees. It was a hot day and the shade under the trees was inviting so we decided to stop for lunch. And thus, we found a little paradise on Crete.

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We ducked under branches and stepped down the bank to the side of the river. It was clear, clean, and had a soft green tint to it. It was only about ten feet wide and would be called a creek in Oregon. It looked clean enough to drink but there was a herd of sheep across from us, so better not to test that idea.

The sheep tensed up at our arrival. They watched us carefully, waiting for a false move. They were fine until we started splashing in the creek. Then they bunched up and moved a few trees away. They could still see us through the trees and a few of them continued to keep an eye on us as they nibbled on the vegetation.

The bright Cretan sunlight came through the leaves above and dappled the water, the ground, and us. We ate leftovers from our dinner in Spili the night before: sausage, spaghetti, fried feta cheese, lamb, bread, beer and wine. We read a few pages from a book about how good olive oil is for you. We sat and watched the sheep. Life was very good.

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