<Location> Pirgí, Mastichochoria, Chios Island
From late summer to early autumn, Pirgians dry the tomatoes outside. Different from the Italian dried tomatoes (pomodori secchi) that we see in shops, these tomatoes are preserved with the central part still raw. The combination of the red tomatoes, gray and white wall, and pale blue paint is very pleasant to see.
For this reason, many tourists take pictures of the hanged tomatoes. When we were doing so, two villager in the photo below left stopped us and told us to take a picture. When we looked inside the house, we found a old woman milling the grain with stone mill (below right). They then asked us to send them copies of the photos; that we did.
Above is another church in Pirgi, and right is the iconostasis of the same church. Very colourful and bright.
It is not clear how the Pirgians started to decorate the buildings in this manner. One theory goes that it was influence from Genua, and another says that it can be traced back to Byzantine Constantinople. Whatever the origin, as the surface of the buildings has to be renewed sometimes, even the oldest examples can date back to the second half of the 19th century.
The triple-arch decoration in the photo right and below is common not only in Pirgí but also in other parts of the island.