It was not that long after we had first moved here & at a time when even equiped with a basic knowledge of Greek, things used to get very confused. In fact, looking back. it was the very fact that I DID appear to the locals to be able to speak some Greek that this happened, as they always assumed that I knew what they were on about, wheras, in fact a lot of the time it was only picking up key words - the rest was guesswork ! - a very dodgey practice ! We were sitting in Pavlos Taverna one night, Gerri & myself, along with Vasilis & his wife Alexandra. I had been having a bit of a problem of late in the old nether regions - Piles (can't spell Haemorrhoids !) I mentioned this fact, in low subdued tones to Vasilis, as I had not visited the Farmakio as yet in the village & wondered if there was a well know remedy locally available. This of course was a huge mistake ! Vasilis sprang up & addressed the other fifteen or so customers in the Taverna & anounced the fact that I had this problem, much to the delight of everyone ! also there sprang into being several sub conversations as to the cause & cure - all of which differed considerably. (these peple don't get out much!) Anyway after the excitement had died down, Vasilis confided in me, that he suffered a similar problem & if I would care to meet him next day at 9 a.m. we could get sorted. There he was as agreed, outside the Farmakio - "Get in the car" says he - "Why" said I." We are here! " Anyway, for some reason, it transpired that we were not. A ten minute drive in Vassilis's beat up old Cavalier with grossley oversized wheels, so he can go cross country, took us to a place where we got out & he started picking plants. This happened a lot at this time, we thought we were doing something & we ended doing something totally different, frustrating but never boring. When we had enough in the bag, vasilis gave me half & I looked at him in my usual quizical way which indicates to Vasilis my total lack of comprehension (He knows this look well !) It's for the piles he advised & all suddenly dawned ! Ah ! a herbal remedy, yep I'm all for that if it works. O.k. how much do you use & for how long do you infuse it ? Then I get the "Look" & the game of Charades start ! There were several passing motorists at the time & I dread to think what they imagined was going on. Vasilis bending over & pointing repeatedly at his bum !! At this point in time, it became obvious what was to be done with the leaves in question & Vasilis was smiling at the look on my face. Back at the homestead the Saintly Gerri (She who must be obeyed) was reduced to fits of laughter when advised of the proceedure to be undertaken & saying the thought of me lying flat on my stomach with no trousers & a plant sticking out of my a*se was just too much to take ! In the end, without too much detail & with the aid of a mortar & pestal plus a little olive oil, the problem was resolved & yes, it did work ! Hang on - we're not finished yet ! Next time I saw Vasilis, I asked if he was o.k. as well & he relied he was, So the leaves work then I said - he replied that he did'nt know, as he uses ointment from the Farmakio & that's where he had been when he met me that morning ! BUT his Father always used to use the particular plant & he wondered if it actually worked ! Copied from blogs (original entry) - post comments here.