Here in Greece, it’s the time of the olive harvests. On Crete, we see all the families headed back to the countryside from their homes in the cities to help. And Crete is the home of the oldest olive tree in the world, you know?
The Olive Tree of Vouves in Chania Prefecture in the west of Crete is 4,000 years old, they say. Imagine that. A fruitful remnant from the time of the mysterious Minoan Civilization, still a symbol of peace, fertility, health, faith, and strength, even to this day. Also, not too many people know that this all-natural food is the single most important element of the world-famous Cretan diet.
In Crete, and throughout Greece, life revolves around olives and olive oil. A short film entitled “The Olive Tree Will Always Be There” (below) pays tribute to the importance of olive trees to the great Greek people.
Just yesterday I was talking with my wonderful friend Grigoris, who runs an amazing taverna in Galatas. I caught him in the olive grove, busy rescuing the precious fruit from damaging rains that hurt the harvest. Grigoris registered the concern all Crete’s olive growers share, that the liquid gold that flows from the island’s heartland might be further diminished.
Outsiders do not always understand, just how precious are the 30 million olive trees on this fantastic island. Some do know, that Crete olives are the best in all the world, though.
Please watch this touching film, and drink in the value of one of civilization’s most important symbols and friends. The olive tree.