The Albanian hired by my business partner, Nicho the Communist, is – supposedly – a true expert. I believe him, but I am left badly confused on three counts.
Firstly, Nicho said he would kill me and my fellow olive harvesters last December if we even cut off one twig. Yet the pruning you can see below is brutal, with huge piles of branches now littering the floor. I wonder: how many actual olives will survive this December?
Secondly, my Albanian friend says he will burn all these branches and, as I write, he is doing just that. This comes a week after, according to Nicho, the burning season ended and it is now illegal. I should say that I still see plumes of smoke rising elsewhere around Kambos but, as a law-abiding citizen, I am even more confused.
Finally, the pruning seems to be costing me c. 5 Euro a tree. Add in the c. 1.5 Euro a tree for fertilizer, and I really am struggling to see how I can ever make any money from this olive harvesting jape. It is all Greek economics to me.