Thursday, June 5, 1650
The view is that of the Pagasetic Gulf, looking away from the market town of Golos towards the opposite side of the bay, with Mt. Pelion behind and stretching away to the left, to form the hook peninsula that encloses the Gulf. Symeon Kokolas knows from growing up near here, in the town of Alos, that the peninsula and its heights are occupied by groupings of centaurs, who are standoffish but friendly to the folk on the shore.
The region is known as Magnesia, a part of Thessaly, and is under the thrall of the Ottoman Turks, who have now ruled here for almost two centuries. It is a difficult country for Greeks who choose to remain Christian; heavy taxes are levied against them, and many rights are denied them. Magnesia has been thoroughly subjugated ... the country gives no hint of rebellion, though there is dissastisfaction. The people are cowed, accepting of their condition, submissive to their foreign overlords.
Earthquakes are common to the region, and light winter rains ... though Golos is a supremely sheltered harbor, and is exempt to the tsunamis that strike other parts of Greece during the winter months. This being June, that temperature has climbed into full summer, with temperatures mildly uncomfortable most days, and the dry season has begun (except for fogs drifting from the sea or down from the mountains on some mornings, the will probably be no rain until September).