June 19 – Kastos to Meganisi

Small church at the first swim stop.

Small church at the first swim stop.

I woke up on the morning of the 19th to a commotion.   Someone yelling wait, wait!  As I made my way on deck Nicole was running toward the end of docking area yelling at the water ferry that had left without them.  The ferry normally leaves at 7:00 a.m., but this morning it had taken off 10 minutes early and the girls had missed it.   When they went running after it the people on the ferry just waved.  So Thanos went to find alternative transportation for the girls they ended up taking a water taxi it was a lot more expensive, but less expensive than Nicole repurchasing her ticket to Australia.

I went back to bed for a little while and then got up for breakfast a little later.  I had never been a muesli and yogurt fan until this trip, but the muesli that Alicja served was delicious and she serves it with a thick yogurt, add honey for sweetner and voila breakfast.  I didn’t eat it at first, but then I tried it and now I’m hooked.

We took off from Kastos after Thanos got the girls taken care of, Deborah and Malcolm finished their morning walk,

The goats

The goats

Alicja finished her morning swim and we all had breakfast.  Our first stop was a small bay with three other boats, a small church and some goats.  At first we couldn’t see the goats, but it sounded like the baby had been seperated from its mother because it was bleating and bleating, and bleating.  I got out the binoculars to see if I could see them, but I didn’t catch a glimpse until they came down to the bay for a drink.  It seems odd that they would drink the salt water, but it didn’t seem to bother them.  They were dark brown with white stripes on their faces so I think they were Toggenburgs.  (That’s left over from my 4-H days when I showed goats).  I tried to communicate with them, but once the kid found it’s Mom, they weren’t very talkative.  They walked a little ways across the beach and then headed back for the hills.

After observing the goats for a bit I headed for the water.  Alicja took off swimming toward the church and I took off in the opposite direction towards the goats.  The water was lovely, but the bay wasn’t as interesting as the swimstops the day before, there was a lot of garbage in the bay.  I sort of wished that I had a garbage bag to pick some of it up.  It seems like that might be a good trip, an enviromental trip through the Greek Islands where you snorkle and dive to help clean up the bays.  Not that they were super dirty, in the first bay on the first day I what looked like floating toilet paper, which was a bit disconcerting.

After the first swim stop we sailed a little bit and then stopped by these baby islands to snorkle.  I thought I could swim

The ruins at the goat swim stop

The ruins at the goat swim stop

around the larger of the two, but it was a little bit too large and I didn’t want to hold everyone up.  The only thing on the islands and you could see all of the island from the boat was a beacon I assume to warn ships away from it at night.  Once again Alicja went off to the left and I went off to the right.  I dove down through an arc in the water and there were a ton of nooks and crannies all along the island, some of them were a bit dark and I was afraid to go into some of the dark places.  I really wanted to find an octopus, but I was a bit cautious of what else I might find, Moray eels like dark places also.  It felt like I spent an hour to an hour and a half exploring, not sure how long I was in the water.  I think I made it one-third of the way around the island before I turned around a came back.  On the way back I tried not to go through the arch, but was trying to take a more shallow path when I got beached.  I stood up and the water came to my mid-calf, so I had to abandon that route and head back to deeper water.

Baby Islands swim stop

Baby Islands swim stop

Back on the boat we had lunch and then headed for our island overnight Meganisi.  We arrived at Meganisi fairly early and I was desperate to find internet so that I could get the weekly report done.   There was a tavern right next to where we docked and I went to look for internet, they had, had it, but it now wasn’t working for whatever reason.  Rather than fret about it I just went back to the boat dropped off my computer and headed for town.  I’m not sure why but I took the long road to town.  There were two ways to go by the road and then up a steep flight of stairs, I opted for the road, but on the way back took the stairs which actually ended up being not that bad and would have been a better choice, oh well live and learn.  Oh my way up to the town the road curved and I met a few bicyclists coming down and a few chickens on the way  up.

The Chickens

The Chickens

I had given up looking for internet and instead stopped at several touristy shops and a couple grocery stores.  The first shop had beautiful dark blue opals, but the earring settings were pretty gaudy.  As I was preparing to leave the shop a couple from the U.K. came in panting and complaining about hiking up the stairs.  I then checked out the grocery store and bought some more cherries.  I went in another grocery store and bought cherry foaming shower gel, it smelled good enough to drink.   Finally I stopped in another tourist shop that was quite quirky they had very cute wraps, but I opted against it.

My next stop was a bar overlooking the bay.  They had a cocktail list a mile long.  So, I sat there sipping a pina colada looking out over the bay.   Overlistening to the conversation of two British couples next to me.  I was there for about an hour.  They had a book exchange and I found Jean Auel’s “Shelters of Stone” which I hadn’t read yet.  I had reread the entire Earth’s Children series last year and I had always wondered when the next book was coming out, well it came out in 2005.

The town - I finally reached it.

The town - I finally reached it.

Now I wonder when the next book is coming out.  I mean when is Ayla going to go back and find her son Durc? (For those of you who read the series.)  So I know I didn’t have a book to exchange, but I had been leaving books all over my travel destinations.  It’s my new modus operandi, wherever I finish it I leave the book with a note in it about where it was purchased and where its been so I figured it would be o.k. to take the Jean Auel book.  I took the book and then headed out to find some food.  I thought about heading back down to the tavern by the dock, but then noticed a pizza place.  MMMMMMMM pizza, so I opted for pepperoni pizza instead.  It was a great choice, the pizza was delicious and a change, but I ended up sitting next to the Wragg family from England.  Mr. and Mrs. Wraagg their daughter Jane and a friend.  They were lovely and we talked, ate pizza and drank good wine.  They were actually staying on the island at a lovely resort that I had passed on my way up the long, winding road.  At dinner I found out that the resort had internet, but at that point I didn’t care.   I hung out with the Wragg’s until about 10:30 p.m. when I started to make my way back down the long steep staircase; however, my descent down the staircase took about 30 minutes where I’m pretty sure it took at least an hour and 15 minutes to walk up the road.  There were lights along the way, but I stepped carefully.  After all how ironic would it be to work in Iraq and then die falling down a steep staircase in Greece.

I made it back to the boat around 11:00 p.m., everyone was already in bed so I hopped into bed; tomorrow would be my last day on the boat.

The Wraggs, my adopted family.

The Wraggs, my adopted family.

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