1st July 2012
It was a long way down
Packing – or maybe just thinking about it
Our last day on Paros and we spent half the time packing!! Poor old Kanales was hopping this morning with a full house of Greeks making the staff run around like crazy, it was actually peaceful to be in our little apartment trying to
stuff pack everything in our suitcases. OMG I don’t know what we’re going to do by the time we leave Santorini. Apparently my face was priceless this morning at breakfast when I thought about how many steps there are in this place, the fact that reception is at the bottom, we’re at the very top and we have 2 extremely heavy suitcases plus assorted other crap.
Lunch time view from Taverna Glafkos, Naoussa
Lunched at a place we stumbled upon one other day right on the beach. It’s quite surreal, you’re wandering around these little laneways and all of a sudden through an open door wow there’s the beach and ocean right there. So different to anywhere at home. It took a bit of finding again and we ended up at their back door but they were so gracious and friendly, welcoming us to traipse through the kitchen all smiles and no worries. I had the best risotto ever and Sarah had a gorgeous bolognaise – neither of us really should have but we didn’t leave a thing on our plates. Then because of course that wasn’t enough the waitress bought out a couple of little ice-creams. I’d really, really like to say we said “no, no, we couldn’t possibly”, well actually we did say that but then we did eat them because she looked so crestfallen, hahaha!!
Didn’t think about this when we were shopping
Anyhow it was back to Kanales to face the big haul down the stairs with our luggage, which we did with just a couple of trips each, much laughter, stops for photo taking and crossed legs (because it was sooooo funny). When Kostas realised what we’d done he was terribly upset, gave us a lecture and wanted to know why we’d do such a thing instead of just calling on him to carry them down. He just couldn’t understand, but to tell the truth even though he carried it all up to the room it didn’t enter my head to ask him to bring it down, ooops. And the fact we were laughing fit to wet ourselves just made him shake his head at us more.
Well, that’s the end to another amazing phase of my holiday, it’s on to Santorini now but I really think I may have found my favourite place in the Greek Isles on Paros.
I’ve taken I think a gazillion photos of doors and building features since I’ve been away, here’s a cool little collection with a few from today’s fun and games, hope you enjoy them.
What’s not to love on Paros
Too nice not to eat
Oh yes you did Sarah
And then they gave us these!!
Some were not as heavy as others – apparently
Street in front of Kanales, Paros
A favourite view from the ruin nearby
Doors of Paros 12
Doors of Paros 11
Doors of Paros 10
Doors of Paros 9
Doors of Paros 8
Doors of Paros 7
Doors of Paros 6
Doors of Paros 5
Doors of Paros 4
Doors of Parot 3
Doors of Paros 2
Doors of Paros 1
30th June 2012
If yesterday was Paros by car then today has to be Naoussa on foot and oh boy did we help the Greek economy today.
Sarah found a handbag range she fell in love with and walked away with two new ones. The story goes that George and Gina were German climbers, they married and had Lucy. One day as they were climbing George died or was killed, I’m not sure which and some time after that Gina started the brand in his memory. Funnily enough it’s called George, Gina and Lucy.
Beaded clothes hanger from Paros
Personally I think the story influenced her as much as the bags did. But then again – we found a store where every piece of clothing was on a hanger covered in multi coloured beads and I’d have to say my purchase there was heavily influenced by the fact that I’d end up with one of the hangers so I guess Sarah is no worse than I am. What did insult me was that she then asked the shopkeeper if she could just buy one of them and he gave it to her for nothing – the advantages of youth!!
Coincidence sure is a funny thing, I have not long ago heard about fish spa’s and today we stumbled on one here on Paros. The couple who own it were both there and had just recently fed their fish but said we were more than welcome to let our legs dangle and hopefully the fish would have a nibble!!
Paros Fish Spa
They were a totally enchanting couple, we talked with them for almost an hour and the fish did a little nibbling at our feet while we were chatting. It was so very interesting to hear about their life. He grew up on Paros and would like for them to live there all year round although at the moment they still spend half their year in Athens. They wouldn’t take any money from us when we eventually left and invited us to return later for another go because the fish weren’t very active.
What a hard life – lunch by the water, more exploring around Naoussa then back to the hotel for swim, sunbake, siesta then drinks. Sakis and Stellios were stressed this evening, a large group of Greeks had descended on them and were apparently quite a bit more demanding than we’d been. They’re still trying to get Sarah to go out with them, although I don’t like their chances. We made our usual trek back down town for dinner and amazingly found places we hadn’t seen before – I find it hard to believe with all the miles we’ve covered but there’s probably more still if we only knew. We did call back to our new mates at the fish spa and spent even more time sharing stories of our different homelands and ended up swapping email addresses, we also met their daughter and niece who were just as lovely .
Sakis and Stellios were winding down by the time we got back to the hotel and were in for another big chat – I feel like all I’ve done here is talk, eat and drink.
I’ll be a wee bit sad to leave tomorow, again I’ve had a fabulous time, met some really lovely people and discovered a little bit of paradise I think.
Peeking though the arch – Paros
Wouldn’t it have been lovely once – looking out over the bay at Naoussa
Swimming beach at Naoussa
Neglected but still interesting – Paros
So many pretty things to look at in Naoussa
from our favourite ruin on the road down to Naoussa
29th July 2012
Our little topless car ride all over the island was great, some places we only did a quick drive-by but others we did explore, it’s a gorgeous little island.
After a few wrong turns we eventually ended up in Lefkes, another quaint little village in the hills with the unusual Church of the Holy Trinity. Sarah was behaving like a bogan tourist, running around on someone’s roof trying to find the best vantage point for a shot she was trying to take. Neither of us even realized it was a roof at first – clueless pair we at times.
Paros seems to be very much more a farming island than Mykonos, I’ve seen grape vines, either wheat or barley crops (I can never tell the difference), plenty of olive groves and even little patches of small vegetable crops. Lots more greenery than I expected. We enjoyed our picnic lunch overlooking the stretch of water between Paros and Antiparos, watching the wind surfers do their thing. It would be nice to go scuba diving around here too by the look of the water but that will have to go on the wish list for another time.
Kite surfing Paros
We went for a walk in Marpissa, taking photos of just about every door and building we passed and probably disturbing anyone trying to have a snooze during siesta time. Sarah kept telling me we would get lost but I was having too much fun to worry about it until she put her foot down and said we had to go back. Oops, we really were lost – no idea where we were in relation to the car or anything else for that matter. Needless to say we had different opinions of which way we should go. I didn’t really have a clue but she wasn’t seeing the funny side of things by this time so I thought I should at least offer an alternative. Finally we found a bar that was open but the guy there couldn’t understand us until Sarah showed him a picture of the old windmills where we’d parked the car – aha, lightbulb moment – and guess what – I was right about which way we should be going.
Probably didn’t need quite this big a space
We stopped in at just about every beach and village on the island but Sarah’s tolerance for sightseeing was exhausted by mid afternoon and the pool, bar and our room seemed like a good idea for a few hours. I’m sure I could easily become a fan of siesta time. As if we hadn’t had enough driving excitement for one day we were brave enough to head back to Parikia for dinner. Knowing I’d be driving back in the dark I’m totally surprised Sarah trusted me enough for that. I just love discovering how many ways I can be amused and entertained by simple things – like parallel parking the opposite way. It was strange even after I drove around until I found a spot that would probably fit at least 2 cars our size in before I attempted it.
Enjoying the sunset, Parikia
Dinner was awesome tonight, perched right on the beach watching the sun go down with good food, wine and a couple of entertaining Greek waiters for good measure – what more could we ask for? Deep fried feta cheese balls and pizza won’t help the waistline but then it’s not every day you get to do this. Even though it’s happened everywhere since arriving in Greece, I still get blown away by the hospitality here, complimentary desert wine and fruit after dinner again tonight and no-one is ever in a hurry to kick you out the door.The drive back to Naoussa didn’t bring any dramas with it so bring on tomorrow I say.
Sunset at Parikia on Paros
Good spot for a coldie on Paros
Making the most of every inch on Paros
Cool beach, Paros
Awwww – or maybe it should be eee-awww,. He’s so cute.
More doors on Paros
29th June 2012
“topless” on Paros
I’ve been busting to hire a scooter at some stage on this holiday but my handbrake (Sarah) isn’t too keen on the idea. So…. we collected some hire car brochures yesterday and this morning I tootled off downstairs to see about organizing one for today. Seeing as I had to opt for a car I chose the “open-top” version. I was feeling very pleased with myself on the way back to our room and looking forward to surprising Sarah with my news. Bugger – I should have known better – she had been checking out the brochures while I was away and greeted me with “I bet you picked the open top one”!! Oh well, we had a good laugh about how well she knows her Mum.We had a few chuckles too about the hire car guy, his name was Achilles and he was so obvious in his flattery it was hilarious. I was elevated from plain old Julie to Julia in no time at all and we were on our way with hardly a glance at paperwork. I hadn’t given any thought to driving on the wrong side of the car and road so took it very slowly at first. I kept going for the gear stick with my left hand much to Sarah’s dismay, but thankfully (for everyone else’s sake as well as ours) there wasn’t much traffic around .
Costas from Kanales had marked a few places on the map for us so we pretty much followed his recommendations when we could find them. I don’t think either of us should get a job as map readers any time soon – we have a hard time working out where we are let alone getting somewhere else. I can’t even begin to imagine how boring it would be if everything was plain sailing – or navigating, we sure gave our laughing muscles a work-out.
Trying to do an open-top photoshoot Paros
Our fist stop was a really pretty beach for a paddle and photos and our second was for a photo shoot of the “open-top” car with a pair of loons jumping around inside. I will admit the sunroof was quite large for a small car but it was still just a sunroof and to try and take photos of us both looking out of said sunroof was quite an achievement – comical but still an achievement. I can’t remember now whose wonderful idea it was to try and capture this truly unique shot but we gave it our all.Because I know how to work the timer on my camera I ended up doing all the running around. Sarah is about half my age and size but she just propped herself in the passenger side of the car looking all elegant with half her body out of the sunroof smiling serenely. I on the other hand was left to set the camera up on the hood of the car, run around the open door, get out of my thongs (flip-flops for non-Australian readers), get in the car and out the roof all before the timer went off – f#@%ing impossible for me to do without ending up looking like a total twit and both of us just about wetting ourselves laughing. Talk about stupid, I did all this at least 6 times before it sank in that we’d be a lot better off if Sarah had a go at being the speedy contortionist-photographer. We had an absolute ball and got some pictures to be proud of and some that should never see the light of day. Doesn’t take much to keep us happy does it?
View from old church on the hill, Paros
You wouldn’t believe it but we got caught in a traffic jam in Parikia, took us ten minutes to go about 500 hundred metres – and then we went round the roundabout and back the way we’d just come because we couldn’t find anywhere to park. Enough of civilization, we decided to try and buy some supplies for a picnic lunch and head out of town again. Between the terrible map reading, neck craning and wrong side of the road driving we spotted a supermarket just after the traffic jam episode. About this time I decided if you can’t beat them you might as well join them – I parked just like a local. Pulled in next to some garage’s driveway, almost on top of another car and nearly over the edge into a six foot ditch – perfect!! Sarah was just about having kittens but it was either that or keep driving round and round wasting good sightseeing time and risking having an accident to boot. Anyhow off we went back to the supermarket for our goodies with me acting all brave and Sarah all worried that we wouldn’t have a car when we returned. It was all good though, they probably thought we were locals.There was just so much to see for such a little island and so many questions to ponder. How they hire out sun-lounges and umbrellas on a tiny patch of beach smaller than our lounge room, then the waiters serve food and drinks to people on those beaches, why are there so many buildings just left to go to ruins, how there is such a contrast between the brilliant blue ocean to the dead looking paddocks and rocks, do many tourists follow the “no toilet paper rule”, how friendly the locals are and how many of them speak English so well.
I wonder how many tourists do the right thing?
Boats near the ferry to Antiparos
High & dry – Paros
Attempting an open-top photoshoot Paros
Church of the Holy Trinity, Lefkes, Paros