ExofylloPrint_Layout 1 4 9 2014 1 47 PM Page 1 1952 2007 2009 In 1951 Walter Hubka a twenty ve year old mining engineer from Austria left his homeland to work in Greece It was his rst contact with the country For many years he lived and worked in Northern Greece in Itea in Milos Island and in Athens We met him in 2007 on the occasion of lming the documentary Milos Revisited which accompanies the present edition In 2009 he sent us an English copy of his memoirs from Greece which he adored despite the di culties he faced until he managed to understand and get used to such a di erent world Greece then had just begun recovering from WWII and the Civil War especially in the countryside where Walter Hubka worked initially life was exceptionally di cult for everybody Our publishing house presents a bilingual edition of his memories together with photos from these signi cant years ISBN 978 618 80935 4 6
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 3 WALTER HUBKA 50 MEMORIES OF GREECE IN THE 50s Skoumtsia and Milos Island
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 3                            WALTER HUBKA                                  ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 4 Supported by Diana Al Hilali Diana Al Hilali Sebastian and Lena Butschek FSC Macart Copyright 2014 Walter Hubka ISBN 978 618 80935 4 6 E 5 106 74 210 7211187 www ironick gr info ironick gr
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 5 WALTER HUBKA 50 MEMORIES OF GREECE IN THE 50s Skoumtsia and Milos Island
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 5                            WALTER HUBKA                                  ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 6 ll footnotes in the text were added by the translators and editors All photos belong to Walter Hubka We thank him for granting us the permission to publish them here
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 9 11 Publishers Note 13 17 Photos 33 SKOUMTSIA or A Di cult Beginning 39 E 55 57 60 62 64 65 67 71 73 77 83 89 91 Photos 93 SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS Introduction 111 The parents of Agathoklis Kypriotis 113 Kitsos Mallis 116 Sulphur for olive oil 118 Coins from Thiorich a 120 Manganese Ore 121 Psar kolla 123 German Land Mines 127 Fishing 129 Kasimir 133 Charalambos 138 Ancient Greek tomb 143 Santorini 145
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 11                                              1951,                      ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 13 Publishers Note In 1951 Walter Hubka a twenty ve year old mining engineer from Austria left his homeland to work in Greece It was his rst contact with our country For many years he lived and worked in Northern Greece Itea Milos in other islands and in Athens We met Mr Hubka in October 2007 on the occasion of lming our documentary Milos Revisited which accompanies the present edition He was a dear friend of gathoklis Kypriotis 1910 1978 a chemical engineer and manager of Varytini company of Milos the amateur footage of which formed the backbone of the documentary Fifty years after the footage was lmed we visited his house at Salzburg He and his wife Ingrid accepted us warm heartedly and quite moved The a ection with which they talked about Greece impressed us From that day on we kept in touch weekly through e mail correspondence In 2009 Mr Hubka sent us his memoirs from Greece written in English He loved the country despite the di culties he faced until he managed to understand and get used to such a di erent world Greece then had just begun recovering from war and civil war especially in the countryside where Walter Hubka worked initially life was exceptionally di cult for the Greeks least to say for a Central European His memoirs begin in 1951 upon his arrival at the village of Skoumtsia near Kozani an area with chrome deposits Two years later he left for Milos where he worked in Varytini and met gathoklis Kypriotis He left Greece in 1961 Iro Diamandourou Nikos Alpandakis 13
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 19                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 20                                                                         ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 21 1966 50 60 lykos 21
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 21                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 22                                                                     ,   ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 23                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 25                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 26                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 27                                      .                                  ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 28                                                            .            ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 29 40 DC3 TAE 5 Athens News 5 29
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 29                                                        ,                ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 30                                           .                             ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 34 The accommodations above wintertime below summertime 34
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 34                                                       ,                 ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 35 Pittas and his family at Chromion 35
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 35                                                                         ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 36 Walter Hubka left Pittas centre and a worker 36
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 36                                 . ,                                     ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 37 WALTER HUBKA MEMORIES OF GREECE IN THE 50s SKOUMTSIA or A Di cult Beginning
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 39 2 3 2009 4 51 pm Dear Iro I enclose a little story from my first 6 months in Greece i e the winter 1951 52 in the north of your country Should it be too boring please use the special button on your keyboard If not it may give you a little impression of our lives so many years ago Best regards Walter Hubka SKOUMTSIA or A Difficult Beginning It was the 8th of November 1951 on a grey autumn morning when the old DC3 of KLM touched down on the runway of the Hellenikon Airport1 in Athens It was the first flight of my life and my first visit to Greece I had left Munich the afternoon before with an overnight stop in Rome In the early fifties airplanes were flying at very low altitudes and crossing the Alps was an adventure reserved for good weather only Many European airlines used old war planes from the American Air Force 1 The old airport of Athens 39
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 39  2 3 2009 4 51 pm Dear Iro, I enclose a little story from my first 6 mon...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 40 WALTER HUBKA Planes had no pressurized cabins and flying resembled a boat trip at rough sea During the first hours in Athens I had the feeling that the ground was bobbing up and down This feeling disappeared when I was introduced to Mr Wollak2 at the head office of Silver and Baryte Ores Mining Co 3 at Amerikis Street right in the centre of a rather strange town My knowledge of the Greek language was limited to only two words I had learned from a nice young man at the Greek Embassy in Vienna when I was there to get my visa Most of the people in the main office spoke English with a rather strong accent that was a bit difficult to understand the first time In the beginning I remember I could not distinguish faces or names Street signs and all the numerous illuminated advertisings were absolutely unreadable I decided to learn Greek as quickly as possible At a tasty Greek dinner with Retsina wine Wollak informed me that I would go to Northern Greece for the next months to a place called Skoumtsia My task was to prospect a number of chromium ore deposits in a mountainous area at the Aliakmon River in the vicinity of Kozani It was the beginning of a mining operation from the very scratch I would be replaced by Richard Weisskircher whom I knew from the University at Leoben Austria Richard was a German minority refugee from Romania and he had a problem getting a passport in Austria Things were not so easy in post war Europe He was 5 years older than me and had already worked in a chromite mine in Kosovo during the war 2 3 Wollak was the technical director in the Athens head offices of the company Today S B Industrial Minerals On Milos Island it is known as Varytini 40
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 41 SKOUMTSIA This way I had to fill a gap in the planning of the Company Being unmarried I was completely flexible and the Company could send me to any place they needed In the end this fact turned out to be quite an advantage for my career there Only a few days later Wollak and I arrived at Skoumtsia We had travelled by train and by bus There was a narrow dirt road which led from the town of Kozani and ended at the village of Chromion The rest was cross country driving without a road on a four wheel drive pickup through an unbelievable landscape which seemed to consist only of deep mud It was raining rather pouring all day long Skoumtsia had two primitive huts with a number of compressors trucks other machinery and lots of empty barrels around It looked more like a gold diggers camp at Klondike than a place in a Mediterranean country It was situated in the middle of hills and mountains and on a clear day one could see the snow covered Mt Olympus It looked quite good for skiing but my skis were far away at home in Salzburg Wollak showed me all the main occurrences of chromium ore which I had to investigate during the following months Then he wrote about 100 Greek words in a notebook This simple dictionary was written in Greek letters first then in Latin with the necessary accent and in the end there was the German translation Finally he left with a Good Luck and disappeared with the four wheel drive car on the muddy trail I was left alone with a troop of good willed workers and some very nice guys who tried to help me in this difficult beginning wherever they could I even had a cook who called himself Jim He had spent a few years in Chicago as a dishwasher in a restaurant His English was as bad as his cooking but it was much better than nothing at all 41
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 42 WALTER HUBKA When I ordered a better olive oil from Kozani his cooking even improved I had a small room in one of the two buildings which was simple but quite comfortable One could even heat it with a little stove Of course there was no electricity at all and the only light for the long winter evenings was a carbide miner s lamp I was used to a simple life from cave expeditions and from our adventures in the Alps and I had spent years in the war and as a prisoner of war What really annoyed me was the fact that no toilet existed Everyone used a place somewhere in the open air After some time a toilet was built under my instructions over the brook Anyway it was a water flushed toilet It was also used by the other people who stepped on the seat and aimed into the open hole probably wondering why the Germanos German had chosen such a complicated system to relieve himself When the toilet seat was always full with huge lumps of mud from their boots I locked the little house and kept it for myself In my room there was a little water container fixed on a wall called Kanati with a tiny tap It contained less than two litres of water too little for brushing the teeth and washing It reminded me that water supply systems in Iran were called Kanat Badly enough I begun smoking in the long and rather lonely winter evenings I had never smoked during my time in the German Army in World War II or as an American prisoner of war when I was near starvation Whenever I had a cigarette I exchanged it for food Heavy smokers usually gave their last morsel of bread for a cigarette It was in the year 1966 when I finally succeeded to quit smoking It was in a cave But this is a different story 42
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 42  WALTER HUBKA  When I ordered a better olive oil from Kozani, his cookin...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 43 SKOUMTSIA During the days I was on my way with Pitta I think this was his correct name He knew the whole mountainous area very well and he knew all even the smallest and completely insignificant outcrops of chromite ore which was the mineral I was investigating Pitta was between 50 and 60 and he lived in the village of Chromion His wife did the laundry for me Pitta gave me Greek lessons all day long He pointed at trees plants animals different items etc and told me the Greek word for it He had an unending patience with his scholar He repeated a word again and again until I had memorized it In the evenings I tried to find my new acquisitions in my Greek German dictionary One day we met a rather mangy dog which immediately bared its teeth when I tried to allure him Pitta said lykos and I was quite surprised in the evening when I found out that it was a lone wolf we had encountered Whenever it was possible I tried to spend my weekends in Kozani away from Skoumtsia When Pitta learned this he invited me to his family in Chromion These people there were extremely poor Many families had lost their male members during the Civil War It was the first time I could experience the Greek philoxen a hospitality something rather unknown in my home country They shared the little they owned with a foreigner I slept in an ice cold bedroom in a perfectly clean bed To supply some heat they had put a very beautiful brazier made from copper next to the bed Charcoal glowed in the brazier and radiated some warmth I was tired and slept with the thoughts of carbon monoxide emitting from the glowing charcoal In the middle of the night I had a dream that I was poisoned by carbon monoxide and that I was going to die I knew all the 43
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 44 WALTER HUBKA symptoms of this irreversible intoxication from lectures at Leoben University and from my former experience in coal mining In my dream I went through all the symptoms and I woke up just before I was to lose consciousness The charcoal in the brazier still glowed weakly I got up and put it outside of my chamber I wanted to continue sleeping without such a dream When it was snowing many workers remained in their villages They had no suitable shoes for this weather A boy brought me a dog called Lisa She was full of fleas and I did not permit her to enter my room Lisa s place to sleep was at the threshold of my hut Whenever possible she mated with one of the numerous other dogs of the workers and I started to worry about the offspring to be expected rather soon But worrying was to no purpose One night Lisa was killed by a wolf Every night one could hear the wolves howl They came closer with the snow Sometimes I wondered if I had made the right decision to come here to this godforsaken place in the middle of nowhere Before coming to Greece I had worked in an Austrian copper mine in the Alps not far away from Salzburg I had intended to go to Bolivia to work there in one of the silver mines on the Altiplano I already had a contract when a riot broke out and several American mining engineers were killed by the exploited Indios I was not interested any more in this dangerous place and I went to Greece when I got an offer to do that Those days Greece had only a few mining engineers who preferred a job in Athens I was ready to agree with them considering the living conditions in Skoumtsia We had some underground investigations running by tunnels and galleries With the snow melt water trickled through the 44
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 45 SKOUMTSIA rock and blasting became more and more difficult as the Company had delivered a non water resistant explosive which was the cheapest one to buy The underground works were in charge by a foreman with a strange name that I don t remember anymore who was not at all convinced that a young mining engineer was needed for these works Of course I did not understand a word of what he was saying but from the sardonic tone of his speech it was rather clear that he was against me I urgently needed a small success Every night the foreman was drunk from an excessive quantity of ouzo One night around two o clock they woke me from a deep sleep Again the explosives had failed I had a few packages of waterproof explosives stored under my bed for emergency cases I took two of them and Argyris who was in charge of the machinery drove with me to the gallery Pi 25 The frustrated workers waited for help I ordered them to wash the useless wet dynamite out of the boreholes During that work the foreman appeared with unsteady feet He wanted to watch my sure defeat not knowing that it would be his own When the bore holes were clean again I loaded the sticks of the waterproof dynamite put in the electrical primers and closed the boreholes with mud There was plenty of it around Then I connected the wires myself as I wanted to be 100 sure that all was done as it should be Without understanding a word I heard the sarcastically spoken words of epistatis foreman When everything was controlled we all took cover and I nodded to the foreman to turn the lever of the electrical blasting machine He did and a huge explosion took place Stones and 45
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 46 WALTER HUBKA pieces of rock were flying and the tunnel was full of thick dust Nobody except me had expected this result The foreman left the place without another word We now had excellent relations In a furious message to the Athens head office I ordered them to supply only waterproof explosives for the future Also I had learned my lesson that they were often saving money at the wrong place A few days later Argyris shot a hare and he prepared Stifado 4 from the meat I still love it and it is still on the menu of my wife Ingrid The foreman was invited too and he offered me some ouzo from his bottle Our relationship was excellent now The operation was shut down before Christmas due to bad weather and a lot of snow in the mountains I reached Athens by train in the evening There were a few centimetres of new snow and serious traffic problems occurred on the streets of the city During the Christmas holidays I was busy prospecting and sampling a lead zinc ore deposit in Attica south of Pentelikon mountain Without telling a word Mr Nassos Eliopoulos the youngest of the three Eliopoulos brothers5 had engaged a scientist to make measurements at the same place to locate galena a silvery lead mineral which occurred at the site in small pockets of a few hundred tons This mineral had a very good price and Mr Nassos was quite eager to sell it and make some extra money The scientist had a little wooden box with a compass mounted 4 5 Stifado a Greek meat stew in tomato sauce with whole small onions The owners of Silver and Baryte Ores Mining Co 46
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 47 SKOUMTSIA on top He made his secret measurements with his instrument and took a lot of notes After a rest at noon in the warm sunshine the scientist had to relieve himself quite urgently Being in a hurry he left the secret box at the table When he had disappeared behind a bush I opened the box which was empty I had learned another lesson Another day Mr Elias Eliopoulos the chief executive invited me to his house After a coffee and endless talks about the mineral wealth of Macedonia Mr Elias proudly showed me his new bathroom with black tiles which was fashionable those days I could not help but think of my room in Skoumtsia with the little Kanati On Christmas Eve Mrs Dawara the secretary of Nassos Eliopoulos invited me and another Austrian engineer for dinner She knew that Christmas was a great holiday in our place This was another example of the famous Greek hospitality Late in January 1952 the operations at Skoumtsia were resumed Several times I visited Xerol vado with Pitta There was the biggest outcrop of chromite in the whole area It was more than 500 metres long It later became the biggest chrome ore mine of Greece and I think it is still in operation A problem in walking around was the thick clay a weathering product of the bedrock With the rains and the occasional snow the clay became a tough mud sticking to our boots in thick clumps The Greek word laspi mud soon belonged to my vocabulary In early March spring came overnight The last snow disappeared in the warm air and turtles woke up from their winter sleep They walked away with thick heaps of rotten leaves on their backs In my room I killed a scorpion and a fat rat 47
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 47  SKOUMTSIA  on top. He made his secret measurements with his instrument ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 48 WALTER HUBKA Sometime in March Richard came together with Wollak Richard was much taller than I and he always had a long face It was raining when they arrived at the site and Richard s face became even longer when he noticed the heavy lumps of mud on my boots and the rather sad living conditions Richard stayed there for several years He began a regular mining operation extracting chromite ore from underground and he built an ore beneficiation plant After he had built a good access road and houses his wife Helga and their little daughter Asta came to live there We all had studied after World War II under rather difficult conditions in post war Austria Our country was occupied by the four Allied Powers and there was no hope that they would ever leave There was the continuous danger that the Russians would try to push the Iron Curtain farther westward and Austria would become a Soviet satellite Fortunately it never happened but they had tried it several times With these rather sad future aspects it was easy to leave our country We all had been in the war and nobody was much spoiled or pampered So we accepted living conditions like the ones in Skoumtsia and we tried to improve them I think now nobody would be willing to do what we did there Most of my colleagues at the University were rather poor but Richard was one of the poorest Being already married he had to work to support his wife and daughter who lived in Vienna s Russian Zone6 The Russian occupation of Vienna and the eastern part of Austria lasted from 1945 to 1955 6 48
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 48  WALTER HUBKA  Sometime in March, Richard came together with Wollak. Ric...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 49 SKOUMTSIA He worked night shifts in a coal mine near Leoben six days a week from 10 p m until 6 a m After a few hours of sleep he attended lectures and had his examinations Richard and his wife died in Germany some years ago After a few weeks of introduction for Richard I had to travel to Athens to get further instructions This date coincided exactly with the Greek Easter Holidays For Good Friday afternoon I had booked a flight from Kozani to the capital The mud at the runway of Kozani had dried up and airplanes were able to land and take off Richard had planned to stay in the north He wanted to spend Easter in a nearby monastery On Megali Paraskevi Good Friday morning we were completely alone in Skoumtsia All the other people had left for their villages the evening before We both agreed that we needed a bath urgently before the Easter Holidays But there was no bath tub or even a shower Only the tiny Kanati for the two of us But there were many empty gasoline barrels So we put two barrels on some stones filled them with fresh water and made a fire underneath The barrels were placed in front of our house After some time the water had just the right temperature We jumped into the barrels and stood naked in the superb bath It was more than pure luxury which we had missed so long The fire below was still burning and kept the water warm The sun was shining from a blue spring sky and the birds were singing We enjoyed this rare moment Suddenly we heard some murmuring A procession of about eight or ten praying monks from the nearby monastery was approaching The pro49
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 49  SKOUMTSIA  He worked night shifts in a coal mine near Leoben six days a...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 50 WALTER HUBKA cession was led by the prior riding a little donkey The legs of the poor donkey were tied together so it could make little steps only One of the monks carried a wooden cross They stopped abruptly when they noticed us Their faces were horror stricken Never in their life had they seen something similar After severe fasting during the last 40 days they probably saw something like two Early Christians being boiled alive as martyrs in two kettles with fire burning underneath I managed to disappear in the barrel and I had only my head over the water which spilled over creating clouds of steam Richard being taller could not hide in the barrel and so he turned around showing them his naked and rather meagre backside I was laughing in the clouds of steam and this did not help the poor monks to understand the strange situation they were in The praying became louder and they all made continuous signs of the cross They did not move for a long time and they made the impression they were completely petrified I believe it was a terrible experience the poor guys had on this splendid Megali Paraskevi Finally the prior said something what we could not understand but his donkey stood stubbornly at the site and would not move a centimetre In the end after some strokes the donkey began to move slowly with his little steps and the whole procession disappeared at the next corner We still heard them praying when we left our barrels In the evening I arrived at Athens in an old DC3 of T A E 7 In an English newspaper the Athens News a cruise to Rhodes was 7 he first Greek Airline after the war 50
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 50  WALTER HUBKA  cession was led by the prior riding a little donkey. The ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 51 SKOUMTSIA advertised for the Easter Holidays on m s Angelica I booked immediately My cabin mate was Pierre a young French engineer whom I knew from my last stay in Athens We spent three beautiful days on board in Rhodes and on numerous other islands We had the good company of two pretty and very well educated Greek girls After Easter I went back to Skoumtsia to collect my belongings Only a few days later I was on my way to Milos by caique as no other boat was available It should be a visit for a few months only before I was transferred to the bauxite mines of Parnassos Richard contracted typhoid fever in Skoumtsia He spent months in a hospital in Kozani 51
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 51  SKOUMTSIA  advertised for the Easter Holidays on m. s.    Angelica   . ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 53                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 55                                                     1953                ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 56                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 57                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 60                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 61                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 62                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 63                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 64                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 65                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 66                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 67                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 68                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 69                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 70                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 71                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 72                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 73                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 74                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 75                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 76                                                     ,                   ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 77                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 78                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 79                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 80                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 81                                                                        ....
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 82                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 83                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 84                                                       ,                 ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 85                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 86                                          .                              ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 87 6 1967 6 2000 Capra aegagrus pictus macrovipera schweizeri 87
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 87                                                               .         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 88                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 89                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 90                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 91                                                                         ...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 94 To the right Walter Hubka 94
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 94                                        To the right  Walter Hubka  94
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 95 Workers at the ore o Michael 1959 Walter Hubka with his son Michael at their house at Voudia 1959 95
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 95                                       Workers at the ore       .        ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 96 Michael Ingrid Hubka with son Michael at the background the Varytini plant at Voudia From left to right Agathoclis Kypriotis Paris Diamandouros Thanassis Kypriotis Popi Kyprioti 96
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 96                                                                 Michael ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 97 From left to right Walter Hubka Ingrid Hubka Kaiti Zoulia and Mrs Wollner From left to right K Mallis N Mallis behind Sp P rfyris I Hubka W Hubka 97
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 97                                                    ,                    ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 98 I Hubka right The boy is H Wollner Front left Mrs Wollner 98
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 98      .                          .                         .             ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 99 From left to right a foreman Walter Hubka Mr Wollner 99
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 99                                                      ,                  ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 100 Voudia the beach and the plant 1960 Right page Kakavia sh soup at Prassonisi 1960 Front sitting Nikos Mallis Center Kaiti Zoulia and behind her Ingrid Hubka Center standing Kostas Mallis and behind him Antonis Vamvounis Standing to the right Spyros Porfyris The boy next to Mrs Wollner is Hans Wollner 100
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 102 Fishing with dynamite Front left Walter Hubka Standing Mr Wollner To the right Erwin Mack 102
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 102                                     Fishing with dynamite      .       ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 103 Walter Hubka and Kasimir 103
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 103                                                  Walter Hubka and Kasim...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 104 1960 Kakavia Prassonisi 1960 From left to right Ingrid Hubka Agathoklis Kypriotis Kaiti Zoulia Nikos Mallis 104
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 104                                     1960 .                             ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 105 Walter and Ingrid Hubka 105
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 105                                                      Walter and Ingrid ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 106 Walter Hubka left and Elmar Goetz at Prophitis Elias Walter Hubka 106
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 106                                 .                                  ,   ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 107 Walter Hubka 107
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 107                            Walter Hubka  107
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 109 WALTER HUBKA MEMORIES OF GREECE IN THE 50s SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 111 INTRODUCTION From July 1953 until August 1956 I worked on the island of Milos together with Agathoklis Kypriotis whom we shortly called Kyp At the time everybody began to use abbreviations whenever possible We were both at the top of Silver Baryte Ores Mining Co in Milos which exploited the two minerals baryte and bentonite and explored kaoline silica perlite and manganese ores Agathoklis Kypriotis who was much older than I was responsible for the whole administration of the Mining Company as well as for the execution of the shipments of baryte and bentonite two minerals that were used mainly in the oil fields of the western world Our customers spread over the whole globe from Maracaibo Venezuela to Sarawak Borneo The biggest part was shipped to the oil fields f the Middle East to Saudi Arabia Iraq Iran Bahrain Qatar etc Kyp was also responsible for buying land from the farmers for our different mining operations and he had to keep the contact with the local authorities As a mining engineer I was responsible for the different mines on the islands of Milos and Polyvos for exploration quality control and so on Chemist and chief of the Laboratory was Spyros Porphyris1 We had a very good cooperation which continued when I was transferred to the Athens head office after the departure of 1 Spyros Porfyris died in 2013 111
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 111  INTRODUCTION From July 1953 until August 1956, I worked on the island ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 112 Walter Hubka Mr O Wollak to Goa In Athens I was the technical director of all the Eliopoulos Mines bauxite in the Parnassos Giona area and gold in Kilkis including Milos which I visited frequently until I left Greece for Austria in 1961 112
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 112  Walter Hubka  Mr O. Wollak to Goa. In Athens, I was the technical dire...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 113 SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS THE PARENTS OF AGATHOKLIS KYPRIOTIS They came to Milos every summer in order to escape the heat of Athens At the time air conditioning was very rare and very expensive in Greece They always stayed for several months on the island During the summers Kyp s sister came visiting together with her son Paris who was a student then They were in Milos several times but they never stayed very long In the summer of 1955 Kyp s brother Stefanos arrived together with his wife Nitsa to stay a week or two in Voudia Bay I remember a Trapezi dinner party in Pollonia with music and dancing Nitsa was a perfect dancer 1955 was the year when I discovered the huge perlite deposits on the island of Milos in Chivadolimni and Trachylas Actually the sandy beach near the little lake of Chivadolimni was the place where I made the discovery We were skin diving one hot Sunday afternoon There was still a wrecked ship near the beach left from World War II We had hoped to catch an octopus hidden in the sunken ship We didn t catch anything but when I went out of the sea and tried to warm up again on the hot sand I had the feeling I was walking on glass I was walking on perlite which is a natural glass By heating it to about 1000 C perlite blows up like popcorn and forms an ideal heat resistant insulation material It was the beginning of a new branch of industry on the island 113
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 113  SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS  THE PARENTS OF AGATHOKLIS KYPRIOTIS The...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 114 WALTER HUBKA We made an excursion to that place together with Stefanos and Nitsa mainly for swimming and to take a few samples of perlite from the mountains behind the beach which all consist of perlite This was the day when we forgot Nitsa and Stefanos at the Chivadolimni Beach as Nitsa remembers so vividly I do not remember this but in case it really happened I still have to apologize after more than 50 years to Nitsa for having kept them waiting so long on the burning hot beach without the least of shade2 I met Nitsa and Stefanos rather often in Athens We went out together went to the movies and I visited them at their home When Kyp s parents came in the summer of 1956 his father had several adventures They had rough sea on their way to Milos and both of them were seasick They went to the ship s deck in order to breathe some fresh air It did not help very much He had to reach the railing quickly to empty his poor and tortured stomach He felt much better afterwards But later he found out that his false teeth were also gone into the blue Mediterranean Sea He always had a very good sense of humour He said never mind and spent the whole long summer very happy on the island without any teeth Koula3 the maid servant of Kyp had to cook soups and soft meals for him Everything was OK He also liked bathing in a nice bath tub which Kyp installed instead of the existing shower in his bathroom The tub stood on a foundation about 40 centimetres high and probably it was not very well fixed 2 When the text was written 2009 Nitsa Kypriotis was still alive She died in 2012 almost 100 years old 3 Koula Veleta died in 2011 114
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 114  WALTER HUBKA  We made an excursion to that place together with Stefano...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 115 SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS Mr Kypriotis senior was in the warm water of the bathing tub one beautiful afternoon and was enjoying his bath He must have moved too much in his bathtub which finally fell from the foundation burying poor Mr Kypriotis under it He remained completely unhurt but was trapped under the heavy tub Kula heard the noise and rushed to help The door was locked and the warm water of the bath came out under the door They had to call his son from the office to break the door and free the poor naked father from his trap I think he enjoyed the incident and was quickly able to laugh about it 115
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 116 WALTER HUBKA KITSOS MALLIS I heard this story from Antonis Mallis a resident of Pollonia who was foreman Epistatis in Voudia Bay During World War II Milos was occupied by the German Army At the time the island had about 5 000 inhabitants and there were about the same number of German soldiers There were very few roads on the island and the Germans decided to build simple dirt roads in order to be able to reach their fortifications with trucks and cars They gave work to men from Milos who had no jobs at the time They were paid with rather worthless money and food which was extremely rare The German occupation forces exploited the country shamelessly and there was starvation and hunger in Greece It was worst in Athens where numerous people died from hunger I still feel ashamed when I think what our people did to other countries they had occupied during this war Mastro Antonis always used his donkey named Kitsos to ride to the road building site He was clever enough to get the donkey on the German payroll under the name of Kitsos Mallis Every morning before work began a German soldier read the worker s names from the payroll They were about 50 workers Each worker had to reply with a loud Jawohl Yes Sir Antonis replied twice When the German soldier read Kitsos Mallis he changed his voice Antonis succeeded to collect the 116
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 116  WALTER HUBKA  KITSOS MALLIS I heard this story from Antonis Mallis, a ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 117 SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS money and most important of all the food for two workers until the end of the German occupation He was very proud when he told me this story This story could easily be true The German army being a merciless war machine worked because the single individual had only to execute orders and was kept away from thinking I personally was a soldier in the German army during the last year of the war We were always told Leave the thinking to the horses they have the bigger heads This way it can be true that the soldier reading the payroll had never thought to count his workers 117
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 117  SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS  money and, most important of all, the f...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 118 WALTER HUBKA SULPHUR FOR OLIVE OIL During the German occupation there was no sulphur available which was urgently needed in the vineyards of Greece During this time every farmer produced his own wine Very often it was of an excellent quality Milos being a volcanic island had several sulphur deposits During my time on the island there was an underground sulphur mine in operation which was situated at the sea shore southwest of the baryte mines of Voudia Bay During the war all these mines were shut down At Voudia were the rather big baryte deposits of Kavos and Pilonissi The Kavos deposit was covered by a thick layer of a snowwhite volcanic ash which was a solid but rather soft rock In this overburden in Greek epikalypsis there were single bodies of pure yellow sulphur some of them containing up to 50 tons We removed this overburden with an excavator and a bulldozer The latter pushed the material into the sea There was so much rock that we connected Kavos with the island of Pilonissi with a road over a stretch of blue sea We sometimes found such bodies of very pure sulphur which were extracted separately and sold it to the Sulphur Mining Company But sometimes we also found empty caverns where earlier sulphur must have been But it was all gone I started some researches and learned that during the German occupation one Oka of sulphur was traded against one Oka of olive oil 1 Oka was as far as I remember 1 260 grams 118
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 118  WALTER HUBKA  SULPHUR FOR OLIVE OIL During the German occupation there...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 119 SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS People who had worked in the mines before the Germans invaded had the knowledge of the occurrence of the very valuable sulphur as well as the experience of how to get it out of the mountain They began their private mining operation which must have been quite successful One beautiful day our bulldozer weighing about 20 tons broke into such an empty cavern The driver climbed out unhurt and the bulldozer had only little damages The problem was however how to get the heavy machine out of that hole again 119
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 119  SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS  People who had worked in the mines befo...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 120 WALTER HUBKA COINS FROM THIORICH A sulphur mines When I worked on Milos the Sulphur Mine was in full operation The director was Mr Zanos a Greek chemist who had studied in Switzerland His hobby was skin diving for underwater fishing and he did not allow any other diver to fish in his bay It was said that he threatened people to shoot at them should they try it The sulphur appeared in rocks mined underground under extremely difficult conditions for the several hundred people working there From the volcanic rocks two gases sulphur dioxide and hydrogen sulphide emerged into the air thus producing a suffocating atmosphere in which it was difficult to breathe and even more difficult to do hard work Some of the Greek coins 5 or 10 Drachmas had a certain silver content in their alloy When the workers kept them in their pockets while working in the sulphur mine the coins got a black coating which consisted of silver sulphide The coating appeared within a single 8 hour shift These coins circulated in the whole country I got them in Athens as well as in Thessaloniki They always reminded me of the difficult working conditions in this mine 120
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 120  WALTER HUBKA  COINS FROM    THIORICH  A     sulphur mines  When I work...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 121 SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS MANGANESE ORE Silver Baryte Ores Mining Co I think possessed and still possesses a rather big manganese ore deposit northwest of the entrance to the big natural harbour of Milos at Cape Vani The ore is rather low in manganese content but it is black as coal It could not be sold in the state it is mined and we spent a lot of time and also money to find a process to enrich the ore to make a saleable product out of it We tried it in our own laboratory in Voudia we sent samples to Germany and the USA Nobody succeeded and we finally forgot about the manganese ore One day we got the information that a caique from Piraeus was illegally loading a quantity of about 70 tons of the ore at Vani The police arrested the people and they confessed that they intended to produce black shoe paste from the ore They had planned to grind it in a Piraeus mill to a fine black powder and mix it with waste mineral oil and grease from gas stations Their plan was to sell their shoe paste at all Eastern Mediterranean Countries where shoe shiners were still in action If they had not stolen the manganese ore I could only have admired them They were simple and uneducated people but they were the only ones who were able to make something useful out of that mineral In the early fifties the streets of Athens were full of men who made their living with shoe shining It must have been in 1952 121
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 121  SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS  MANGANESE ORE Silver   Baryte Ores Mini...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 122 WALTER HUBKA or 53 I was sitting at Zonar s4 with a lady friend when the first German bus arrived with the first German tourists Most of them did not have passports before this time The allied occupation forces had kept them confined within their borders after World War II The tired tourists climbed out of the bus and a bunch of shoe shiners tried to shine their shoes The Germans did not want that but the shoe shiners took their German nee dialect of nein meaning no but in Greek sounds like yes for an approval and only few escaped shoe shining 4 A famous pastry shop in Athens 122
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 122  WALTER HUBKA  or 53. I was sitting at Zonar   s4 with a lady friend, w...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 123 SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS PSAR KOLLA Foreigners working in Greece needed two permits to stay and work in the country The Adia Paramonis stay permit and the Adia Ergasias work permit had to be renewed annually On Milos Island these important documents were handed over by the Police Chief personally Elmar Goetz5 and I were informed that we had to be at the Police Station at 9 a m We arrived there 5 minutes earlier Goetz was the former private teacher of the two Wollak children When they were sent to junior high school in Athens we caught Goetz in the laboratory testing bentonite as an oil well drilling fluid The Police Chief was not in his office when we came He was a very important man on the island After more than one hour of waiting I tried to find out where the Chief could be The policeman in charge of the station told me that he was very probably in the Kafen on coffee shop Fifty years ago each office in the Greek countryside was equipped with two unavoidable items A little box with pins karf tses and a bottle of glue psar kolla with a small brush inside On the desk of the Milos Chief there was the same important equipment ready for use 5 Elmar Goetz was initially the private teacher of Mr Wollak s children When they moved to Athens the company occupied him in the Milos laboratory He later worked in the company s office 123
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 123  SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS  PSAR  KOLLA Foreigners working in Greec...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 124 WALTER HUBKA When the second hour of waiting came near to its end I began to be impatient and angry When I played with the bottle of psar kolla some of the content was spilled on the Chief s writing desk I distributed the glue with the brush and covered it with some of his numerous papers and documents which became all well glued to the writing desk Fortunately our permits were not glued to his writing desk When the Chief finally returned to his office with a lengthy excuse for his delay he gave us our permits and we could leave I remember another story with a Police Chief in Amphissa I had worked there with Karl an Austrian friend and also mining engineer in the bauxite mines of Parnassos We had restarted the mining operations at the Parnassos Giona area in Phok da6 A part of the installations was destroyed by partisans during the German Occupation in World War II The restart of the mining operations was difficult but finally we succeeded to have a notable production of bauxite ore The bauxite had to be transported from different mines in the mountains to our loading bridge near Itea located at the Gulf of Korinth We had a fleet of more than 70 trucks working around the clock The highest mine was abt 1 800 m above sea level and the average distance to the port was 55 Km The drivers got a premium depending on the tonnage they transported to Itea The consequence was that they tried to overload their trucks and the police directed them rather often to a public weighing bridge in Amphissa where the overloading was confirmed officially which meant payment of fines and loss of valuable time 6 Parnassos Amphissa Phokida Giona Itea are places in Mainland Greece 124
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 124  WALTER HUBKA  When the second hour of waiting came near to its end, I ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 125 SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS The solution of our transport problem came in the person of a nephew of the local Police Chief He demanded from us that we gave his nephew an easy job in the Company Of course we did that gladly and immediately but the problem was that the very nice boy of about 18 years was mentally disabled and it was extremely difficult if not impossible to find a work he was able to do We tried everything from easy office work to washing cars or washing our dirty rubber boots or to prepare coffee Nothing really worked He would have liked the job of the Kafetzis coffee shop owner in the office but whatever he produced was no coffee Since he was in the Company our transport problem had smoothed down to practically nothing We urgently needed an occupation for the poor fellow but he was not in a position to do a useful work His father said Give him any work only keep him Karl who came from Salzburg too and who had studied with me in Leoben Austria had the final idea We bought him a cute dark blue cap It was the same colour with our trucks He received a list with the licence numbers of all trucks where he should put a little cross when a truck passed the office building which was at the main road He stood in front of the office With his new cap he had a very official appearance He liked his new job but on the first day he threw the list away and reduced his job to salute each dark blue truck with the white inscription BAUXITAI PARNASSOU in a strict military way Our drivers who all had at least three years of service in the Greek Army saluted back seriously He always looked at the road for the next truck to arrive When a cloud of dust came down the road from Top lia he anxiously prepared for the next truck with blue colour to pass the office building 125
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 125  SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS  The solution of our transport problem c...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 126 WALTER HUBKA Everybody seemed to be satisfied The poor fellow was happy His parents and the uncle were happy too Karl and I could forget the problem of overloaded trucks We had plenty of other issues He kept his job until a new office building was erected near the loading bridge in Itea Karl stayed in Greece when he retired In addition to his Austrian citizenship he was offered the Greek one He died in Athens about 10 years ago 126
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 126  WALTER HUBKA  Everybody seemed to be satisfied. The poor fellow was ha...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 127 SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS GERMAN LAND MINES The German occupation forces on Milos had probably expected a landing of the British Army on the island Therefore they buried heavy land mines behind beaches suitable for a landing operation Such a place was Voudia Bay with the installations of Varytini Silver Baryte Ores Mining Co behind it There was a very primitive fence of barbed wire around the area with the mines and there was also a completely unreadable little poster with the word N rkes landmines on it Everybody knew that and nobody stepped inside One day three or four goats stepped inside and one mine exploded killing all the animals An old man came along on his donkey and saw the disaster He said I am already old and I have lived my life I don t eat meat very often So I will get the meat I know I will l risk my life In case nothing happens the meat will be mine He entered the fenced area and nothing happened He collected from the mutilated bodies of the animals what was worth collecting and left the place After a heavy southern storm in March one heavy anti tank mine had been washed out by the waves and lay next to the road in Voudia Bay Kyp and I had to decide quickly what to do with this mine 127
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 127  SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS  GERMAN LAND MINES  The German occupatio...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 128 WALTER HUBKA It was absolutely dangerous to leave it alone during the night Fishermen who usually got their bait by fishing with explosives could try to disassemble the mine in order to get the dynamite and they could easily provoke a deadly accident The usual source for them to get the necessary dynamite for this severely forbidden way of fishing was a state owned mine on the island of Naxos So we decided to blast this mine We closed the area and put some dynamite on top of the mine I had been a soldier in World War II but I had forgotten the unbelievable force of military explosives The explosion was tremendous and frightening to everybody living in Voudia Much of the glass in the windows was broken When another mine appeared with the next storm we informed the Police Chief and asked him to take care of it He immediately sent a cable to Athens there was no phone those days in Milos and asked for support from the ministry To show his education to his superiors he wrote the cable in katharevousa old Greek which lead to a misunderstanding with enormous consequences The people in the ministry understood that he had sighted a floating mine in the sea near Milos and closed the whole traffic in the Aegean Sea Mrs Wollak who was on her way to Milos on the steamer Moschanthi spent more than 20 seasick hours of waiting anchored in a stormy bay near Kythnos Island Years later a German plan showing the exact sites of the mines was found The place was finally cleared by Greek soldiers 128
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 128  WALTER HUBKA  It was absolutely dangerous to leave it alone during the...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 129 SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS FISHING We often accompanied amateur fishermen to Prasson si or to D pses a group of barren rocks far out in the sea south of the island The bait for the long fishing lines parag di was always caught with a stick of dynamite They only used a very short piece of fuse When it burned they waited until the very last second before they threw the dynamite into the sea Many had waited a bit too long and had lost one arm I saw several of these people on the island Only minutes after the dynamite had exploded the sea gulls arrived to collect dead fish floating on the surface They were serious competitors for the fishermen who were also busy to get their bait Not much later always a few sharks appeared to get the dead fish which fell down into the blue depth They looked like dangerous torpedoes For me this was quite an unusual experience Everybody knew that this method of fishing was severely forbidden by Greek law But nobody cared No real control was possible I do not know if they ever realized what damage was done by it When they had all the bait fish collected from the surface the gulls as well as the sharks disappeared The bait was fixed on the hooks of the paragadi which was laid out in a depth of abt 80 meters During the following long hours of waiting a very tasty fish soup Kakavi was prepared with a few of the bigger fish It was perfect with fresh bread and Retsina wine 129
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 129  SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS  FISHING We often accompanied amateur fi...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 130 WALTER HUBKA It was already dark when the paragadi was pulled to the surface again I remember a catch of big fish and lobsters Some of the big fish came up as skeletons The flesh had been eaten by other predators We returned around midnight Although it was summer it was chilly at sea and we needed sweaters to keep us warm Stepping on the land in Voudia Bay was like walking into a furnace The rocks had stored the heat of the day Every morning I was busy to see all our mines and I was on my way either by jeep or by boat when I had to go to an underground baryte mine in Polivos7 My companion my dog called Kasimir was always waiting in the jeep He never missed a trip In the afternoon I did the office work Since I was my own boss in Milos I extended the noon break for diving and fishing Elmar Goetz was always with me and very often also Spyros Porphyris We fished with harpoons and used goggles and snorkels Bottles with compressed air were not available on the island We had the whole bay at Voudia for ourselves Sometimes mainly on weekends we made fishing excursions to other parts of the island Our catch differed from day to day Some days we had a lot and some other days little or nothing However we tried to catch enough for supper I had a Milos girl as maid servant who knew exactly how to cook the fish we had speared When the diving season begun in late April it was always difficult to reach a depth of 4 5 meters But after some time Goetz and I made it to 12 meters which was quite deep The best fish 7 Polyvos or Polyaigos is a small island near Milos 130
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 130  WALTER HUBKA  It was already dark when the paragadi was pulled to the ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 131 SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS were at greater depths Some of the problems I have now with my ears may date back to this exaggerated deep diving I remember a huge perch Rof s at the island of Pilonissi It had its cave at a depth of abt 15 m I often visited the big fish which must have known me already It must have been old and clever and it stayed in his safe cave Through my goggles it looked even bigger than it really was Once I discovered an undersea cave at a depth of abt 6 m very close to this fish The cave had another exit through which I could see the blue water on the other side It was not very long I think about 8 meters I made the stupid decision to swim through this cave It looked quite easy When I had nearly made the whole length of it my strong buoyancy pressed me against the cave s ceiling and I got a real problem to free myself and get out of the cave with the last air in my lungs I made it just the last moment That day I promised myself never to do that again Another day we had rough sea and the best fish were at a depth of 10 to 12 m After the incident at Pilonissi we only dived together I had to surface to breathe when I saw that Goetz was going still deeper straight to the blue abyss I grabbed him and pulled him to the surface He had completely lost his sense of direction and he had thought he was going up when he was diving still deeper Our chemist Spyros Porphyris wasn t an enthusiastic diver He preferred to swim with his goggles and watch the beautiful undersea life The Kafetz s of the office was very successful in fishing with a weir basket where fish were able to enter but could not escape any more Every day he caught one or two big fish in 131
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 132 WALTER HUBKA this device His secret was a bad smelling cheese he used as bait Spyros bought such a basket too and tried fishing He never caught even one He did not have the right bait He stopped it after he found a sardine tin and a paper in his basket On the paper was written Best regards The fish I never saw Kyp at the beach swimming or diving He was a hunter and he was on his way on Sundays with several friends and his dog Max They hunted grouse P rdika I always had the impression that the number of hunters was bigger than that of the birds They were mainly hunting in the mountains of Chalakas in the western part of the island where they walked over great distances At the time the road ended at the lake of Chivad limni When there was a strong south wind huge waves came to our beach It was a 5 to 6 m high wall of water which came thundering to Voudia Bay Once we tried to dive through this wall of water which was impossible It was nearly dark inside the wave and we were turned around together with sand pebbles and bigger stones It was not easy to escape Spyros thought he might also try When he happily emerged he was naked His trunks were lost in the turmoil of the wave 132
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 132  WALTER HUBKA  this device. His secret was a bad smelling cheese he use...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 133 SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS KASIMIR Kasimir was my faithful dog and companion in my often lonely life in Milos His size was average and he had a shiny black coat with a white spot on his neck He was a hunting dog as the Greeks claimed He despised hunting just like me and on the sound of gunshot he would disappear in the deepest hole They said he was a purebred and that he belonged to a race which the Greeks call Geka 8 As a protest to this he had a twisted tail The Greeks could not pronounce his name correctly They called him Cashmere He was a beloved companion and surely one of the best kept dogs on the island He seemed to be aware of this He treated the other animals with an aura of superiority and arrogance He only made exceptions for female dogs in heat In the warm seasons he would always sleep unleashed on the veranda In the morning when I got on my jeep at 7 o clock he would sit at the back and wiggle his tail in anticipation of our next adventure Quite often I would hear Nikos the taxi driver say that he had spotted Kasimir strolling about the island during the night He would sniff out a female in heat and no distance to reach her would seem far for him The most important thing was to be back at 7 to sit on my jeep Nikos recounts revealed Kasimir s nightlife Gekas The official name is Hellinikos Ichnilatis Greek harehound and it is the classic Greek hound dog On 16 October 1959 the Greek Harehound was recognized internationally based on the standard submitted by the Kennel Club of Greece to the F d ration Cynologique Internationale 8 133
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 133  SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS  KASIMIR Kasimir was my faithful dog and...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 134 WALTER HUBKA I remember something characteristic at the plant we had a N ktoph lakas night guard who watched the area all night and we had given him a staff s presence punch clock so he wouldn t fall asleep in a corner at night Nevertheless he never mentioned any incident Since to the contrary of many others he wasn t illiterate he kept a notebook in which he recorded everything Six months later I remembered this notebook and asked to see it To my surprise I only read notes about my own nightlife Minute to minute and in misspelled Greek he described the hours between 11 at night to 7 in the morning when I left with my jeep and returned home as well as the visitors I had Apart from that there was no recorded incident Kasimir and I had the same fate Nothing could remain a secret from other people Another hound dog the one owned by Kyp had also a good life His name was Max He was a brown setter but they kept him on a chain most of the time Kasimir was always unleashed Rumour had it that Kasimir arrived to this world a whole week after his sister I was supposed to get his sister but the owner put the poor puppy in a bag and sent her on the bus to Voudia she never got there She fell of the truck and was lost Her mother hid under the bed to deliver delayed Kasimir He was tiny when I took him But he grew up fast I m sure he was having better meals than his Greek counterparts When I was preparing to train him Ada Wollak and her daughter Uta who went to junior high in Athens had arrived for a two week holiday on the island It was only natural for someone to want to avoid the city heat Uta adored animals and even more a puppy like Kasimir My dog would stay at home all day with Uta 134
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 134  WALTER HUBKA  I remember something characteristic  at the plant we had...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 135 SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS At night time when Uta would retire to her bed they brought Kasimir to me But he would head back for the Wollacks house where he had spent a wonderful day There he started whining making Ada so desperate since he didn t let her sleep She kept on nagging that I should lock him inside during the night Thus I decided to follow suit and lock him inside Then I switched off the lights and told Goetz Now it s our turn to whine Outside Ada s bedroom there was a huge bush we hid very carefully behind it Then we started whining cautiously and quietly Her reaction shhhhh was immediate But the whining became more and more loud Then Ada shouted outraged Kasimir you dirty old dog don t even think of coming back and appeared in her night gown To her surprise she didn t see Kasimir outside We sat still behind the bush The moment she went back to her bed we begun again Finally she gave up and thus our mission was declared a success Kasimir was whining in front of a big lake He wasn t trained yet The training had to continue We used a drilling machine to search the ore for the new unknown baryte found in the Eastern part of the island The operator had his dog always by his side Even when he shut down operations on Saturday afternoon the dog would stay there until Monday morning It would remain without water and food and guard the drilling rig as if it was a treasure Sometimes when the weather was very hot I fetched water and food for it But it wasn t easy to get near it It protected the machine with fierce barking and baring its teeth Kasimir had a better fate In the mornings Kasimir was always tired from his nocturnal adventures and would rest in the shade at my house At about 135
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 136 WALTER HUBKA 10 the Kafetz s coffee shop owner would appear at my office with the second Turkish coffee of the day Wollak had a different office Each time Kasimir left a puddle on the floor next to Wollak s desk s left leg which Kafetz s cleaned mumbling Then he would go down the wooden staircase on the left side of which he would scratch himself He always had an itch so it was a way to save him from tiresome scratching Ultimately he would swim a lap in the sea and then sleep at the house s shade until lunch time When I visited the various sites he was always with me He was a passionate co driver in my jeep sitting in the back seat and barking when he thought there was a reason to do so This happened quite often On the way to Triovassalo there was a farm house where another dog lived Kasimir hated him This dog waited for my jeep to arrive and ran after it covering the distance from one fence to the other He always tried to bite the tires of the cars passing by We gave him the name Duty Dog Kasimir would bark like a mad dog in the back seat Once when I was driving Goetz caught Duty Dog by its back and held him a meter above the ground The dog had his feet in the air and then turned surprised to look at Goetz wh left him fall down After rolling on his back a few times he was on his feet again All this made Kasimir bark extremely loud Duty Dog never chased us again He had learned his lesson Kasimir swam the whole time we were fishing Once I went alone to our small bay It was very hot and I was very tired after a very long swim We lay down under the shade of a rock and I fell asleep Kasimir was my pillow It was almost twilight when I woke up and Kasimir greeted me by wiggling his tail He hadn t moved a wink while I was deeply asleep 136
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 137 SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS He was always by my side when I was off to a mine operation We had a baryte plant on the uninhabited island Polivos and I had to travel there with a Ka ki caique boat He would always come along despite the fact that he got dizzy when it was stormy and it was a rocky boat ride Once I threw him in the sea to let him swim back But he kept swimming towards the caique and got soaking wet When he shook the water off him we were all trenched In Milos there were underground working sites with long often perplex tunnels which Kasimir loved The workers always left something from their lunch for the rats He hunted them down and would often disappear barking in the dark loudly I was afraid that he might fall in a deep pit but finally he managed without a problem although it was pitch black He would come out even happier to greet the daylight We were then investigating a big deposit of bentonite Due to the latent volcanic activity in the tunnels the temperature reached 50 C with almost 100 humidity thus I had to minimize the working hours fully paid though to 4 hours daily Kasimir of course was with me when I had to go inside Even if the heat made it difficult for him and he had to follow me dragging himself on his belly When I was transferred to Athens my successor in Milos kept him My maid Moskoula named the garbage bin Kasimir because the bin devoured everything like Kasimir 137
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 138 WALTER HUBKA CHARALAMBOS The people on Milos Island knew that we the Central Europeans had a totally different attitude towards animals and for this reason they constantly brought wounded or abandoned animals to us the Germani Germans to take care of them One day a worker brought us two young hedgehogs with the size and the colour of a chestnut Both of them were full of lice We sprinkled them with DDT but unfortunately it cost the life of one of them The other one survived this violent treatment without a problem We would feed him diluted milk with a feeding bottle we made ourselves in our lab We had nothing else to give him nevertheless he grew up rapidly and soon enough he could eat more food with great pleasure We named him Charalambos which means shining from happiness In Greece there are many churches and chapels dedicated to Aghios Charalambos An excavator operator from the site of Kavos Babis short for Charalambos his full name Babis Marketos was very insulted to find out that we gave the same name as his to a hedgehog But so be it we couldn t undo what was already done Charalambos slept during the day but the moment it went dark he started strolling very hungry towards our veranda to have a bite of our dinner Elmar Goetz Wollak s children former teacher Spyros Porphyris the chemist and I would dive every day after lunch to spear 138
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 138  WALTER HUBKA  CHARALAMBOS The people on Milos Island knew that we, the...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 139 SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS fish with our snorkel and mask We would fish for our dinner not successfully every time fter the chill of fishing we would warm up in the afternoon sun and then it was the time to hunt for grasshoppers hopping in the shrubs to feed Charalambos We carried them in a marmalade jar in which they waited their fate they would crash on its lid but later on surrender and just wait The moment Charalambos appeared on the veranda he went immediately towards the jar and waited for one of us to open its lid As soon as this happened he stood on his back feet and shoved his head and pointy nose to grab the first grasshopper from the jar The quantity of the poor grasshoppers necessary to fill him up was increasing week after week Often he would catch a careless gecko he spotted at the lowest part of the wall for dessert When winter arrived at last to be precise the rain season the grasshoppers where rare to find the same with spear fishing which didn t excite us anymore since the sea was now cold It was time to change Charalambos diet Apart from that he had to prepare himself for his hibernation This change of diet to what we were eating prepared by our housekeeper was no problem Soon enough he showed a preference for Keft des meatballs and Pat tes Tiganit s French fries Charalambos started picking the French fries from our hand if we held him standing Hibernation was out of the question It seems that the food was exceptionally delicious In January or February it was Aghios Charalambos celebration There was a Panig ri festive day at the church All danced and sang and many spent the night in a special area in the church For hedgehog Charalambos a telegraph came from an Athenian lady 139
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 140 WALTER HUBKA with wishes for his name day I answered briefly Thank you Charalambos In the winter he had his corner in an empty hen house One day a local man came and he had to go to the toilet urgently so he ran to use the hen house He relieved himself on poor Charalambos who was sleeping and who later on came for his diner quite grumpy indeed Cleaning him was a very difficult task due to his thorns At one time I kept some chickens and a rooster which remained in the hen house at night I called them with names of Germans from WWII The rooster was Adolf since he made the most fuss As the chickens were not producing eggs anymore they took the route to the cooking pot The last to go was Adolf Soon after that when spring arrived his grasshopper gourmand diet begun again In the fall of 1954 a biologist called Wettstein visited Milos I hadn t the slightest idea then that he actually was the very famous Professor Otto Wettstein Westersheim from the National History Museum of Vienna Wettstein was a famous herpetologist and travelled the Aegean Sea for his research At the time not many strangers came to Milos so Nikos the taxi driver of the only taxi on the island brought him to me at Voudia Bay Nikos arrived in the afternoon and told us that he collected snakes dead or alive As it was natural I showed interest because I had seen snakes on the island but I didn t know how to distinguish which were poisonous and which were not So I asked him He kept the snakes in two bags made of linen In one he kept the dead ones in the other the alive He took out the ones alive one at a time and explained with details and then put them back One of those he took out was actually poisonous He also showed me the viper of Milos which is consid140
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 140  WALTER HUBKA  with wishes for his name day. I answered briefly     Tha...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 141 SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS ered one of the most poisonous Thus I was taught by drinking Turkish coffee with him all the island s snakes Wettstein also told me that the Greek islands in the Tertiary Period were united to Asia Minor and after the changes that occurred in the sea the islands were formed This is why the Asian fauna had evolved differently in the islands than in Europe or in Asia He was a very interesting person and I was astonished by the broadness of his knowledge I invited him for dinner The moment we sat at the veranda Charalambos came and went running towards the jar As soon as he took the grasshoppers one by one Wettstein was very excited When he saw him eating the French fries from our hands he exclaimed This is a genuine Asian hedgehog with a white belly For me Charalambos was an ordinary amusing hedgehog who finally became famous I noticed that Wettstein liked him very much He wanted to mate him with a female hedgehog in Vienna and expect offspring I thought about the endless hunting of grasshoppers and passing winter in the hen house and gave Charalambos to professor Wettstein who took him to Vienna a few days later He asked me everything about Charalambos menu and I noted it in Greek Wettstein had a permit to visit the inhabited island of Erim milos Antimilos 9 to kill a wild goat for the Museum of Vienna These 9 According to Wikipedia Greece Antimilos has been characterised by the Natura 2000 network as a Site of Community Importance It is home of a rare species of wild goats Capra aegagrus pictus similar with those in Crete and of a rare species of Eleonora s Falcons Also of a rare snake species the macrovipera schweizeri also known as the Viper of Milos Nevertheless in recent years the remaining wild goats of this species are endangered with extinction due to inbreeding and droughts Visiting the island is allowed after permission of the Cyclades Forest Service 141
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 141  SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS  ered one of the most poisonous. Thus, I...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 142 WALTER HUBKA were protected by a very strict legislation and were supervised by a clerk who lived there in a small house After being left unpaid for a year he started killing them for food In the working site there was also a carpenters workshop and the Marang s carpenter had made an extraordinary box for transportation with a handle The box had wooden rails which allowed the animal to look outside The following Sunday Wettstein and Charalambos left for Piraeus aboard the Ionion A few weeks later I met the only doctor of the island Mr Kypraios who recounted to me Imagine this I was travelling on the Ionion for Piraeus and this German s man was onboard in first class in the dining room and ordered lunch for himself then he took out a note and ordered Keft des and Pat tes Tiganit s for the hedgehog I never heard about neither of them again Wettstein died in 1967 Probably Charalambos is a stuffed Asian hedgehog in a display window of the National History Museum of Vienna 142
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 143 SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS ANCIENT GREEK TOMB One night a truck of Varytini broke its rear axle on its way back to Voudia Bay It was east of Philakop where the truck s left rear wheel fell into an empty cavern under the dirt road It was already dark when Kyp and I came to the place where the accident had happened It was obvious that the truck s left rear wheel had broken through the thin ceiling of a cave or some other underground room below the road It was all dark below and we had no torches with us We secured the opening in the middle of the road so that nobody could stumble in it and the damaged truck was transported to the workshops of Voudia Next morning we were back with a ladder and lamps The cave was a grave chamber with 6 or 8 tombs Three of them were covered with heavy stone slabs Somebody was buried in them Each tomb was in a niche and there were oil lamps and beautiful vases placed above Above of each niche there was a head of a ram a male sheep It was an ancient Greek grave chamber From the chamber there was a small tunnel leading to the slope under the road The tunnel was closed with stones We were fascinated being the first people entering this place after about 2 000 years We did not touch anything We sent a cable to the Archaeological Institute of Athens reporting our discovery An archaeologist arrived on the next boat and we showed him the place He opened the three tombs There were skeletons of 143
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 144 WALTER HUBKA adult people inside Around their skulls oil lamps and vessels were placed The archaeologist packed all his findings in a box but left the skeletons untouched They were very friable and would break into powder if transported to Athens He explained to us that the underground chamber we had accidentally discovered was a family grave of colonists who had arrived from Athens around the year 100 after Christ They must have left the place for some reason after a certain time They had closed the access tunnel to the chamber with stones Below this place there is still a garden flourishing on a certain amount of sweet ground water From this place our man vis grocer brought his vegetables daily to our houses in Voudia Very probably the ancient Greek family had cultivated the same place and lived there for some time Nobody knows why they left When I asked him about the meaning of the ram heads on each niche he said that an ancient Greek word for a male sheep was malos which could be an explanation for the present name of the island Of course I am not an archaeologist and I can only report what he said 10 10 According to another theory the name of the island comes from the word vilos which means sheep and then evolved to milos There are other similar theories but none conclusive 144
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 145 SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS SANTORINI In midsummer 1955 Santorini was destroyed by a terrible earthquake We felt the first tremors around 5 in the morning We had had a very hot night with lots of mosquitoes When I went out to the veranda I saw some rocks tumbling down to the sea Then it was completely quiet After some time a white seam which had the appearance of a wave came slowly into Voudia Bay It was a mini Tsunami coming from the island of Santorini I had never seen something like that before Within minutes the sea flooded the flat land Everything looked strange After a long time the water receded and the children were busy collecting fish which had not made it back into the sea Only a single old building was destroyed on Milos Our installations were not damaged The only problem was that we were without electricity for several hours Our generators were driven by huge diesel engines with sea water cooling When the sea water receded the pumps could not supply any cooling water until the surface of the sea had reached the normal level again 145
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 145  SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS  SANTORINI In midsummer 1955 Santorini w...
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 147 SOME SHORT STORIES FROM MILOS AFTERWORD For people not at home on the island life was not always easy mainly during winter There was little or no distraction There was no phone no movies and no daily newspapers A health centre or a hospital did not exist Of course there was no helicopter in the case of an emergency an accident or an urgently needed operation There were three old boats a week connecting Milos with Piraeus They needed 12 hours for one trip Elena was on her way via Syros and needed 18 hours In winter trips lasted much longer I once spent 65 hours travelling on Elena in January When the sea was rough their trips were often cancelled and then our mail was delayed for many days or even weeks Agathoklis Kypriotis and Spyros Porphyris spent most of their working life on the island Sometimes this must have been difficult for them One could not go to Athens for a weekend The only possibility to get away was the annual leave or the Christmas holidays Living conditions improved rapidly with the beginning of tourism on the Greek islands I remember an American mining engineer who came to the island from one of our customers companies who said to me It looks like paradise but I think it can be a prison too For me only the best memories have remained Whenever I have the chance to come back to Greece I have a feeling of coming home again Walter Hubka 2009 147
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Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 149 1926 Sankt Johann im Pongau 1937 1944 1946 1951 B 1961 1987 72 1967 13
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 149                                                                        ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 150 Walter Hubka 2014
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 150  Walter Hubka  2014
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 151 WALTER HUBKA Walter Hubka was born in 1926 in St Johann im Pongau in Austria He lives in Salzburg since 1937 where he attended the gymnasium From 1944 before he could nish the gymnasium he had to serve in the German Army in today s Slovenia and at the Western front Allied Invasion At the end of World War II he was a prisoner of war for one year He nally returned to Austria in 1946 He immediately began his studies to become a mining engineer at the University of Leoben His career began in a copper mine in Austria The di cult working conditions and an uncertain future due to the allied occupation in post war Austria made him decide to go abroad From late November 1951 he started working in Greece for Silver and Baryte Ores Mining Co The various stations were search for chromite ore in Skoumtsia near Kozani in Northern Greece restart of the destroyed bauxite mines in the Parnassos Giona region Milos barite and bentonite mining as well as the discovery of the world s biggest perlite deposit on the island In Athens he became technical director for all Eliopoulos mining operations including Northern Greece Gold elds Ltd He was also busy with prospecting in the whole country In 1961 he returned to Austria and found a position in the cement industry as plant manager near Salzburg until his retirement in the end of 1987 Being used to work also in other countries he became an independent consultant for cement factories and their raw materials in various countries around the world as Ethiopia Nigeria Zambia Honduras Guatemala Haiti Djibouti Emirates Madagascar Indonesia Morocco Greece Canada Saudi Arabia Eritrea Ukraine and Turkey Many of these countries he visited several times He continued this job until he was 72 years old Walter Hubka is married since 1967 He has two children and four grandchildren He loves his family nature his garden and music At the age of 13 he discovered mountain climbing in summer and winter as well as speleology He took part in great underground expeditions staying in caves for many days He has climbed high peaks in the Alps Asia Minor and the Peruvian Andes
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 151  WALTER HUBKA  Walter Hubka was born in 1926 in St. Johann im Pongau in...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 152 A heavy and dull detonation shook the ground a pu of smoke came out the cli and that was all J Conrad Heart of darkness
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 152                                                                        ...
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 153 Detonation of a rock
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 153                                  Detonation of a rock
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 154 1915 1919 1962 1964 1926
Hubka_OLO_156_Layout 1 4 10 2014 11 57 AM Page 154                                                                        ...
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ExofylloPrint_Layout 1 4 9 2014 1 47 PM Page 1 1952 2007 2009 In 1951 Walter Hubka a twenty ve year old mining engineer from Austria left his homeland to work in Greece It was his rst contact with the country For many years he lived and worked in Northern Greece in Itea in Milos Island and in Athens We met him in 2007 on the occasion of lming the documentary Milos Revisited which accompanies the present edition In 2009 he sent us an English copy of his memoirs from Greece which he adored despite the di culties he faced until he managed to understand and get used to such a di erent world Greece then had just begun recovering from WWII and the Civil War especially in the countryside where Walter Hubka worked initially life was exceptionally di cult for everybody Our publishing house presents a bilingual edition of his memories together with photos from these signi cant years ISBN 978 618 80935 4 6
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