About Alkmini

I was born and raised in Corfu. My mother had French and Italian origins as well as Greek, and my father belonged to a family by

My mother, Antigone Metallinou (née Raymondi), on the day of her engagement, c.1920.

the name of Metallinos, that originally came to Corfu from Constantinople after the Ottoman conquest of Byzantium in 1453. Our branch of the family settled in the village of Korakiana, to the north of Corfu island, on the slopes of Mount Korakion. My father was a landowner and schoolteacher, who eventually became one of the best-loved headmasters on the island. My mother was a “city girl”, trained to play the mandolin, excellent at needlework, a lover of books and prayer, and a person who helped others whenever she could. Her life was dedicated to raising me and my five sisters (of whom I am the youngest).

My father. Stavros Metallinos (1901-1969)

I have many warm and affectionate memories of my childhood in Corfu, and though we did experience the war, food shortages, and various difficulties, I wanted for nothing and what money could not buy was the love I received from my parents and the memories I gathered along the way. Back in the 1960s I graduated from the High School of Economics, and left for Switzerland and then London where I continued with French, English, and other professional courses. I returned to Corfu in 1967 and I worked in various posts on the island before meeting my husband, Leon Chaitow, Honorary Fellow of the University of Westminster, author and osteopath. We fell in love at first sight back in 1971, and following a whirlwind romance and marriage, we remain the happiest of couples to this day. Our daughter Sasha was born a few years later. In the 1990s I studied for and was awarded a diploma in Counselling and Psychotherapy from Nene College, Northants. In the years that intervened, aside from looking after the family, I contributed to four books on aspects of healthy nutrition(see sidebar) and several dozen articles for Here’s Health, Healthy Eating, and Green Cuisinemagazines relating to healthy nutrition, lifestyle and raising happy and emotionally balanced children. Most of my energy goes towards supporting Leon in his continuing work, Sasha in her studies and various projects, and especially towards tending and nurturing our garden. This blog represents a window on my world, which is filled with sunlight, sparrows, and a lot of love. I want to share memories of a simple, but special childhood in Corfu during a time that has almost been forgotten, muse on various aspects of life, and of course, share the stories, scents and flavours of Corfu, this most beautiful of islands. Welcome to my world….

One corner of the garden…