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03/13/13
A Love of Jackie
Filed under: General
Posted by: Nikos @ 6:33 pm

A Secret Love Affair of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis


I guess it’s only natural that our deepest longings for sweetly remembered innocent moments come amid the most unsettled current times.  Greeks are no exception to that phenomenon and my good friend and cataloguer of all photographs Mykonian, Dimitris Koutsoukos, has just the antidote for troubled times.
Fifty-one years and two weeks ago today (June 10, 1961 to be precise), America’s first lady, Jackie Kennedy, set foot on Mykonos for the very first time.
She’d escaped the whirlwind publicity of her visits to London and Rome for a promised not harried visit to Greece, courtesy of the invitation of Greek Prime Minister Constantine Karamalis and the hospitality of the Nomikos Greek ship-owning family.
Here are photographs by Life Magazine photographer James Burke documenting Jackie Kennedy’s arrival in Mykonos harbor off the yacht Northwind and her first steps of what would prove to be many on the island.  They also record Jackie’s first meeting with one who would prove to be a love of her life. I’m talking about Petros the Pelican, and when he passed away twenty-five years later it was the then Jackie O who gifted a new pelican, Irini, to the island.  But that’s a story for another time.

Jeff—Saturday

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A Love of Jackie
Filed under: General
Posted by: Nikos @ 6:33 pm

A Secret Love Affair of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis


I guess it’s only natural that our deepest longings for sweetly remembered innocent moments come amid the most unsettled current times.  Greeks are no exception to that phenomenon and my good friend and cataloguer of all photographs Mykonian, Dimitris Koutsoukos, has just the antidote for troubled times.
Fifty-one years and two weeks ago today (June 10, 1961 to be precise), America’s first lady, Jackie Kennedy, set foot on Mykonos for the very first time.
She’d escaped the whirlwind publicity of her visits to London and Rome for a promised not harried visit to Greece, courtesy of the invitation of Greek Prime Minister Constantine Karamalis and the hospitality of the Nomikos Greek ship-owning family.
Here are photographs by Life Magazine photographer James Burke documenting Jackie Kennedy’s arrival in Mykonos harbor off the yacht Northwind and her first steps of what would prove to be many on the island.  They also record Jackie’s first meeting with one who would prove to be a love of her life. I’m talking about Petros the Pelican, and when he passed away twenty-five years later it was the then Jackie O who gifted a new pelican, Irini, to the island.  But that’s a story for another time.

Jeff—Saturday

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05/20/12
Thank you Jeffry!
Filed under: General
Posted by: Nikos @ 1:46 am

Our thanks to Jeffry Seiger for giving life to our Tales.

Nikos and Jody

Link: http://murderiseverywhere.blogspot.com/

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Thirty Years Ago…
Filed under: General
Posted by: Nikos @ 1:43 am

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Thirty Years Ago…


The news here in Greece is heavily focused on how much the country has changed over the last thirty years. All you hear is “thirty years” of this, “thirty years” of that. So, I decided that as a personal change of pace I’d ask my friend Jody Duncan, who with his partner, Nikos Hristodulakis, own the Montparnasse Piano Bar, a Mykonos institution into its thirtieth year, to give me his thoughts on what those years have meant to him. And yes, Jody’s time was spent behind bars, something many Greeks argue a lot more should experience if the country is to change its thirty-year course. But that’s for another time, for now here’s Jody.
I’ve been thinking about how to approach this significant thirtieth season on Mykonos. That’s not to say the prior twenty-nine were insignificant, but when I try to put down all the memories rushing through my head, I don’t know where to begin.
Queen Latifah and friends with us behind the bar
Should I give you another funny tale of a frenzied evening in The Piano Bar? Maybe the one from long ago about an extremely famous and overly demanding clothing designer from France who thought that waiting for a table during a busy evening was beneath him? No, he still comes in. I better forget that story. Or the enthusiastic Irish lady whose husband ran off for the evening with another man? Hmmm, I think I’ll tell you that one next time.
The long and the short of it…is fun.
Margaret Thatcher?
Perhaps you’d like to hear about the first time Petula Clark sang in the bar, much to the delight of everyone here? Oh that was a great night. The crowd convinced her to sing and right after she finished she came over to Nikos and said that sadly now she had to leave because her “cover was blown.” Nikos smiled and calmly told her, “My dear, your cover was blown long before you ever arrived at our bar.”
He carefully explained that passengers had recognized her on the flight to Mykonos, and from the moment her plane landed the central topic of conversation was “When would Petula Clark show up at Montparnasse to hopefully sing a chorus or two of Downtown.” She burst out laughing, walked back to the microphone and did just that to a wildly appreciative audience. She’s returned to the island many times, always obliging us and her audience with that same sort of gracious performance. We still keep our eyes on the door for when the lovely Pet will come through it again.
Then there are all those lovely sunsets, almost four thousand, each one slightly different from the others. I can’t begin to count all the times over the years that someone has asked me, “Do you know you live in paradise”? My response is always the same: “Yes, I know.” Though I must admit there have been times where I’ve taken sunsets for granted, only to be stopped in my tracks by a nearly perfect one.
Of course, I’m overwhelmed with memories of all the talent that’s appeared behind our piano and microphones, but there are way too many names and faces to even begin mentioning them all. I’ll just stick to naming who’s coming this year: Bobby Peaco, Kathy “Babe” Robinson, Phyllis Pastore, Mark Hartman, and Kelly Howe. And one who’s not: our dear friend David Dyer. Alas (for us), he’s serving this summer as associate conductor for the national tour of Peter Pan, starring Cathy Rigby. But he’ll be back in 2013. So, how did he get that job? Through the magic of Montparnasse: one of our long time customers hired him. A tale in and of itself, but one I shall not tell.
At least not now.
I’ll save it for when I have to find something to say in another thirty years, but for now I think I’ll just end it here.
I’ll leave any punning observations on your choice of endings to others, Jody, as I’m mercifully off in Munich at the moment and relatively incommunicado.
Jeff—Saturday
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05/10/11
Mykonos Was Different Then.
Filed under: General
Posted by: Nikos @ 6:35 am

 

This is a Post from :  http://murderiseverywhere.blogspot.com/2011_04_01_archive.html

Murder is Everywhere

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Mykonos Was Different Then.

Mykonos wasn’t always like this. There were hard times, make that very hard times. The island once was among Greece’s most impoverished places. Mykonians literally starved to death during World War II. Then came the Greek Civil War.

In two weeks I’ll be back on Mykonos and promise to share with you as much as good taste will allow of present day life on that international jet set summer destination. But how did it came to pass that a community still guided by centuries-old church traditions and deeply held family values so effortlessly coexists amid the unstructured, freewheeling lifestyle of visiting summer hedonists?


I think the simplest way of telling the story of that transition is out of the archives of Dimitris Koutsoukos. As I described an earlier piece, Dimitri is a native Mykonian who has amassed a fascinating collection of photographs capturing the essence of the island, many of which are posted to music on YouTube videos available through this link. http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=dimitris+koutsoukos&aq=0

Dimitris Koutsoukos amid the old and the new.

Dimitri, the photographs please…

These were the days that set the island’s modern day roots, when all Mykonians had was each other. It was the turn of the 20th Century.

Naturally, many lived off the sea and learned their skills from childhood.


Others survived as farmers.


Some depended on both.


Then came regular boat service linking the island to the mainland.


And with that tourists looking to experience traditional island life.


But one day a very famous visitor stepped ashore and forever changed the image of Mykonos.

International celebrity Petros the Pelican arrives with friend.

And glitz began to flock there.


Turning fishermen into guides.


Bringing energy to quiet beaches.


And, of course, making nice with the locals.


In the process each learned much from other.

Tourists how to dance…

…locals how to dress.

And they became friends.
It is a life to which I long to return.
Mykonians tolerating tourists
And for a musical understanding of the draw of Greece, check out this YouTube Video.
Jeff—Saturday

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