Thursday,May 8, 2008 Santorini, Greece

What sounded like someone taking a shower in a nearby room was actually the pouring rain that got me up at 5:30am. I (Andrea) had big plans to go to Oia (pronounced “Ee-a” as in my nickname) and take some of the beautiful pictures I keep thinking about. Instead I went back to sleep for nearly an hour and headed out a little late. It was still overcast and the clouds loomed, but I got a few nice shots and, more importantly, familiar with the surroundings for future pictures before the rain started again. We decided to make the best of our time in spite of the rain and went exploring. The winds were high so we did mostly a “car tour” of Santorini. We did see “Red Beach,” the lighthouse on the end of the island and Parissa Beach. The weather had cooperated long enough for a stroll and a little beach-sitting in Parissa—which was a nice little village without any tourists. We caught some other sights quickly like Akrotiki (closed indefinitely, but we still drove through the village), the monastery high on the hill (where we walked around but were nearly blown off the mountain), and a short trip through the wine roads (I thought of you many times mom). All in all, we had a great day—even if it was spent in the car.

The afternoon was much nicer and we walked around Fira town with the cruise-ship tourists. There are more shops than I ever would have thought and it reminded me of every other port-of-call I have ever been to (obviously with a beautiful view even if it smelled of donkey doo). We meandered back to the terrace and sat enjoying our view, the sunshine (YAY) and music from the i-pod for at least 2 hours–what a great way to spend the afternoon. I persuaded Mynde to join me on the foot-path to Imovergli (the next village about 20 minutes away)…for no other reason than to enjoy the sun while walking and seeing a little more of the island.

At about 6pm, we headed to Oia to try and catch the sunset that we have heard so much about. There was a small issue, we didn’t account for the wind that decided to start back after nearly 45-minutes of chilling our bones.

We dined at Romantica Restaurant and met a nice couple from Vancouver. (Mynde is taking over now…) What was touching was a few words the owner of the restaurant shared with us. At one point while dining, the buses and other traffic passing by on the highway directly outside of the restaurant, a very shrill sound startled the entire restaurant. Andrea and I immediately feared a dog had been struck down in the street and asked the owner, “What was that?” He quietly approached us and said, “The bigger the noise, the smaller the man.” So if was a prankster and nothing more. Then as we closed our tab, he chatted with us once more, asking if we enjoyed our meal and our time on the island. Then he stretched is arms wide and invited us into a huddle and said, “You know the problem with humanity? We are surviving and not thriving.” Again, beautiful evidence that no matter what country, what background, we all want the same thing in life… to live it fully and richly as the kings and queens we are!

http://www.flickr.com/apps/slideshow/show.swf?v=71649

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