Saturday, October 3, 2009


Thursday, November 22nd, 2007 Thanksgiving Day!

After a restless night we woke about 8:30 am and hurriedly put ourselves together; added our breakfast items in our backpacks and headed down the hill. We didn’t want to be late for the boat to Delos. This time of year there is only one boat that leaves at 10 am and returns at 1 pm. During the summer months the boats leave every half hour all day. We soon learned that they also will not go unless there are enough people wanting to go! Monday the site is closed and both Tuesday and Wednesday there was not enough people. Fortunately we had ten people this morning and they agreed to take us today. We met a very nice young couple on holiday from Australia and also Marilyn, a woman from Denver Colorado. They had all been waiting to go to Delos for two days.

Marilyn is traveling solo and will be returning to Istanbul where she has a job teaching English as a second language for the next six months. She is very into archeological things, her previous job was as an engineer, and Jim was delighted to have her to tour this site with as opposed to me who is not very interested in old things. They were the last two to return to the boat when we were ready to return at 1 pm.

For those like me who are not enlightened on the history of the Island of Delos; let me fill in a few of the blanks. First of all, only a few caretakers are allowed to remain overnight on this island. It is small, only 5 km long and 1,300 m wide; devoid of vegetation but resplendent in the sunlight as the sun reflects off its rock formations. The highest elevation is Mt Kynthos, beneath which spreads the sanctuary dedicated to Apollo and his sister Artemis surrounded by the Hellenistic city. Something has been going on here since about 1400 BC but the real history begins during the 7th Century. At one time there were about 30,000 inhabitants who lived on this island. It was a haven for wealthy merchants who built homes here. This is an extremely large archeological site and is one of the important sanctuaries in ancient Greece, and because it was abandoned during the Roman era the site remains have not been spoiled by the gradual accretion of later buildings as in the rest of Europe.

It was an enjoyable few hours spent wandering around the rocks of the past. There is also a very well laid out museum on the island where they are preserving many of the more important artifacts. The weather is still cold but the winds that have been blowing so hard have finally slowed down. The sun is shining today and the skies are blue without the heavy black rain clouds that we’ve had for the past week.

Returned from Delos and walked up to the Windmill Museum; closed for the season and so we continued further up until we were back at our Pension Bobby’s. This morning we timed our walk to the port and it took twenty minutes; all down hill. But we took our time walking home and it wasn’t bad at all. Rested, read a bit and then about 4:30 pm we donned our layers of clothes and headed back down the hill into town again.

Our quest was to find an open gift shop with a miniature windmill as a souvenir of Mykonos before having dinner. We walked in and out and around and through the warren of narrow alleyways that wriggle between the white-walled buildings. There are still some colorful bougainvillea plants hanging from balconies to add color to the scene. We’d just about given up when I walked into a small market and there, high on a shelf, I spotted exactly what I’ve been looking for; and only 5.5 euros. Jim proceeded to negotiate and purchased it for Five Euros. Some things never change!

We meandered back to our favorite restaurant for another round of vegetarian pizza and added spicy fried feta cheese to share. Thought about trying a different restaurant but since we knew this was so good, decided to return again.

It was dark by the time we finished so we headed for the taxi stand again and rode up the hill to our pension for only 3 euros tonight. We’d left the heater on low when we left so found a toasty warm room awaiting our return.

Tomorrow we catch the ferry at 2:15 in the afternoon and head back into Athens for the final few days of our trip. I will sign on to the Internet on the ship and send all my emails, journal and photos. It’s hard to believe that we’re nearing the end of our trip.

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