Wednesday, 15 October 2008

ABC Wednesday: M for memorial

It's ABC Wednesday again, and M is for memorial. To the ignorant, these are impressive miniature churches, some of which are dedicated to a saint. Others simply stand in front of a house or on the road looking slightly out of place. Most are adorned with flowers. The one in the photo is located on a road I use four times a day (on the school run), and it always has fresh flowers surrounding it.

If you could read the inscriptions, you would realise that they were built as a memorial for someone who passed away - in a road accident on the very spot the memorial is situated. By looking around, you will also realise that there are usually more than one memorial found in the same area (there are a few other memorials on this road too). I hate seeing these distracting edifices on the roadsides. They remind meof another M word: misery.


  1. θα μπορούσαν αυτά τα εκκλησάκια να είναι κοσμήματα στους δρόμους. σημαδεύουν όμως τόσο λυπηρά γεγονότα

  2. I have seen lots of those both on Crete and on Rodos - they are both touching and fascinating.

    PS They grew mostly grass for some sheep and cattle - and of course potatoes.

  3. I have not seen anything similar here only flowers at the roadside.

    We would use the boat two or three times a week - depending on the weather. You can see from the pics that she was hard used.

  4. Ah the memorials, It is hard to say what I feel about them, yes of course, sorrow for the people who have lost someone. It seems strange to see cars parked on the most dangerous bends just to place flowers.
    But they have always been part of the landscape as far back as I can remember.


  5. This is very interesting, to see the Greek version of the memorials. And I know how you feel; it IS depressing to see them every day and be reminded of the misery.
    Sometimes unofficial memorials spring up at the site of a traffic accident or terrorist action in Israel. The officials dare not remove them.

  6. Hello Med.Kiwi

    You beat me to it!!! :-)

    I wanted to take pictures from a road in my area back home which is full of memorials like this and you can somehow see the evolution of their architecture. There are some very old ones which are just made of metal and some new ones like the one you show in this post. However, i did not have the time to travel there last time i was there.

    They are numerous in that road...Last count i gave them (around 1998 i think), they were about 52 (those that i could see because some of them -the really old ones- get knocked out of the road). That is 52 memorials in a 4-6km stretch of winding uphill road.

    Since our road's network is not ideal in Greece i would suggest that someone lets the tourists know what is it that these memorials represent through some leaflets or ad spots or youtube videos...whatever. So they can keep an eye and reduce speed when they see a high concentration of memorials. Treat them like your informed passenger seat local :-)

  7. I've often seen shrines to the Madonna on the roadside as well. And in all sorts of places.

    Good M.

  8. After some cold rainy days in Madrid, looks like the sunny weather as returned... :-)

    Great ABC Wednesday shot!!!

  9. Thanks for your hilarious comment. Here's an answer:
    Wait Kiwi, wait! Women are not forbidden in the Shuk Arba Haminim!
    I may have worded it a bit ambiguously. . . so, as you say, "it sounds like. . ."
    Picking out the best four species to buy is men's work. Anyway, the women were probably all at home cooking the first meal to be eaten in the sukkah Monday night.

    You have me LOL LOL comparing it to Mt. Athos. How I would love to ascend holy Mt. Athos! Hey, you give me an idea. Do you think I could do the Barbara Streisand "Yentl" thing and sneak in?

    What is pergamon fruit??
    Yeah, I should post about the required fruit: it is a citron, known in Hebrew by its Aramaic name, etrog. They have a nice smell, yes.
    After their ten days of ritual use they can be used as regular fruit.
    I have never seen the inside of one. But there are recipes for etrog jam and schnapps here:
    For a history of etrog growing and trading, including the Greek connection, see

  10. Thanks, Maria. You always bring real feelings to your discussions. Through your blogs I see the Kpth I know and love, with all its contradictions.

  11. Such an interesting cultural aspect. Makes me wish we would all pay more attention to each other while we are living. Memorials are nice, but the dead no nothing of the memorial. How much better to have shown more appreciation while they ere alive.

  12. We also see simple crosses or flowers on our roadsides in the US. I too have mixed feelings about them, since they do not benefit the person who was killed there. They also seem to be a distraction in what was obviously a dangerous area anyway.

  13. I guess I should not complain about the simple crosses and plastic flowers used for the same purpose here. I always think they are a bit Morbid. I would prefer to have better memories of someone. But these are quite ostentacious!