• The Long Way Home!

    Mykonos, Greece…I am truly changing my ways..well, in some ways! On this island, taxis are scarce…I usually swear by the reliable comfort of the private car & driver type of transport, but that is not an easy solution here. So, I am going to have go it in a whole new way.

    A long day at the beach, I was ready to get back…After waiting awhile for the water taxi, I tried very hard to find a nice air conditioned taxi to take me, I had zero luck and came up empty…The bus it is going to be!

    Well the bus looked fine until the sign saying 45 seats was spotted by a crowd numbering over 70 strong. Now the craziness starts! I couldn’t help myself and had to be the difficult diva; after pushing my way onboard, I had no ticket! The driver is screaming at me to go to the mini-mart to buy a ticket!?! No way, I throw 3 euros at him (ticket was 1.20) and proceed to board…ok that tantrum worked!

    Now the bus is packed beyond belief…is this legal? Are we gonna flip over? We all think it, but no one is gonna do anything about it! Pulling into the final station, I decide this diva needs some retail therapy and an indulgent dinner…who cares that I am in my swimsuit with a towel strewn over my shoulder…This is Mykonos not St. Tropez!

    The town has tonnage of shopping…even Louis Vuitton got in on the action with a summer pop up store. You can find everything, but the locally produced items are coolest to me! Hand-knit and hand-loomed sweaters, cobbler made sandals, and intricately woven scarves. Scarves! Everyone knows I LUV a scarf! To my surprise a Greek widow (Traditional Greek women wear black exclusively after their husband dies) was the artisan at the loom. How cool! She loved my interest and tried to teach me some things. I am on sabbatical, no work!

    The sun was setting and I topped off the evening in a little seafood taverna in little Venice: fresh mussels simmered in a broth of tomato,feta,and scallions with delicately fried zucchini on the side! Delicious! I needed extra bread to soak up every last drop…

    As I walked back to my hotel along the waterfront, I relished that tangerine haze that hangs on the horizon after the sun sets. I came across the town stork on his nightly stroll right before I get “home” in time for my “disco nap”! I must get refreshed for another late night on the town!




  • Making Lemonade out of Lemons!

    Piraeus, Greece…My Friday the 13th worries were unfounded, I arrived easily in Athens (with the help of several episodes of “The Real Housewives of New York” downloaded on my IPad).

    The challenges started once I got to Athens…I had done research and learned that there was an easy bus right from the airport to the port town of Piraeus. I chose to stay near the port as I would set off on the ship tomorrow and why go through the commute from Athens!

    I walked out of the airport to stifling heat. Athens was suffering under days of 100 degree weather! The bus was easy to find, but my vision of a coach style bus were shattered when I saw what looked like a city transit bus…ok, well here we go! At 5 euros, a deal was had and I settled into my seat. Then the bus sat baking in the heat filling to standing room only capacity with a mix of tourists and airport workers. As we took off on the hour and half journey to Piraeus, the bus barely cooled but filled with the stench of deodorant unaware riders! At this point, I was thinking “what did I do?” Finally arriving in Piraeus after what seemed an eternity, the town was chaotic and I was thoroughly lost, sweating, and starting to fear that I too took on the odor that I just inhaled for way too long! This is starting off on a bad foot and I was feeling dejected!

    I arrived at my hotel and the day turned around…I booked the Phidias Piraeus Hotel, which I still can’t believe was only 35 euros ($43)! A totally modern designed hotel that was pristine and very chic! Wow, what a great place to layover if you have a ferry or cruise the next day!

    There was more to this town than the bustling port…fruit trees lined the streets, great shopping galore, and the most charming Marina Zea, the antithesis to the main port area. Lined with waterfront cafes looking out out at the marina filled with gorgeous boats, this area was the perfect end to a roller coaster day. Sitting outside enjoying a marvelous Souvlaki dinner, I watched the sunset over the harbor and knew i turned this day around and a big smile came over my face! I was reminded yet again, how “sweet it is” to travel the world!