About a year ago, I noticed heavy machinery beginning to carve terraces in the hill on the other side of the valley. Best Beloved found out that a developer called Panaretou was planning to build seventy-odd maisonettes there.
Since then, Panaretou built a mountain, literally, from the soil that he carved from the hillside. Day in, day out, earth movers crawled, scoops dug, cement churned and spurted.
‘Who’s giving him the money for this development?’ we asked ourselves. And later: ‘And who’s going to buy these boxes and live in them?’
Driving past on the way to the beach last month, I realised that they faced the summer afternoon sun. We christened them The Ovens, and watched their progress with amazement and dismay.
This morning, Best Beloved’s first words (almost) to me were. Panaretou’s gone bust. And as I sat drinking my coffee on the verandah I looked out over the valley and saw the waste: the waste of the natural beauty (ok, it’s not a stunning hillside, but, unscarred it was comely), the waste of the resources, the pollution.
‘What will happen?’ I asked Best Beloved. ‘Will it be covered up, filled in, made safe, at least?’
‘After a kid or two dies playing in there, Kouklia council may fence it,’ he answered. ‘Meanwhile, it will just stay like that as no-one will want to take on that project now!’