The second half of our stay in Ios was just as enjoyable as the first. Mackenzie, Michael, and I went four-wheeling again (we got a few more hours free because one of the four-wheelers had kind of stopped going up hills the day before and we couldn’t go where we wanted to, so the owner let us take them out again with no extra charge). We found one of Ios’ “hidden beaches” which was beautiful, and also ran into some cows while driving. As in they were in the lane right next to us. Seemed like kind of a hazard to me, but we survived. We returned later that day to play cards—our new favorite pass time. We all strived for the perfect game (it’s a bidding game, so a perfect game would be if we got our bid all ten rounds) but alas, none of us prevailed. We finished the night by pushing our beds together and the five of us huddling around Mackenzie’s laptop and watching My Big Fat Greek Wedding. Let me tell you, it was a million times better after having met Tasos, who had demonstrating to us how all English words were derived from Greek and
how no matter what, Greece always wins.
The next day we got up and read more on the beach, me rotating between three books because none of them were really holding my attention long enough to read for more than about ten pages (Villette by Charlotte Bronte—decent but I can only read Victorian literature for so long, Amsterdam by Ian McEwan—I only chose it because now I’ve been to Amsterdam…and Jade, a book aimed for middle school girls, and written in French, which was sadly the best of the three, but considering it was in French I would stop being able to follow after about 20 pages…) So life was rough…although if just having to rotate between three books while laying on a beautiful beach drinking strawberry dacaris is a rough life, I’m ok with that.
In the afternoon, Denise and I went tubing! Far Out had a little beach shack run by a man named Pete, who was pretty much the coolest 50 year old man ever. It was so fun! Although the water was sooooo salty I felt like my eyes were going to fall out of my head, but nonetheless it was still fabulous.
I believe this is the day that we were all sitting around playing cards (trying for the “perfect game”) or eating or something when Allison looks at her BlackBerry and says, “hey guys—there’s some random volcano erupting in Iceland and it looks like they’re closing some flights in Ireland and London. This is so weird!” We all had a good laugh about such a random world disaster happening while we seemed so removed from reality! A volcano!? HAHAHAHA. Little did we know…we mentioned this casually to some of the people who worked on Ios and they had no idea anything was happening. I’m convinced that living in Ios is not a real life.
Michael and Mackenzie went back a day before me, Allison, and Denise because Michael had finals the following week and needed to get back to London. We found out about 20 minutes before their ferry on Saturday night that their flight the next day was indeed canceled, but they decided to go ahead on the ferry they had tickets for and figure out stuff in Athens. (We joked about seeing each other again to continue to aim for the perfect game…)
That night Allison, Denise,
and I decided to actually go out since the entirety of the staff had subtly been hinting at us that we were the strangest guests they’d ever had because we got up before noon (because the breakfast buffet closed at 11!) and we didn’t hit the town from midnight until 8 am. So we made the most of our night, starting at the “Fun Pub” where EVERYONE has to go apparently. There were two other people there when we got there around 11, one of them being Clarky, a guy we had met our first day on the beach and who lived on Ios during the summer (and Australia during there summer—so basically he never experiences winter). His first words to us were, “first time out, girls?” we just nodded, then went to sit at the bar where we met the bartender. None of us thought we had seen him before, but when he saw us he said, “Hi girls! Is this your first time out? You’ve been here for like a week, right?” In other words, when there are only approximately 10 guests on an island, people talk.
We played some backgammon there while waiting for an appropriate
time to head up to Flames, the bar where “everyone HAS to go to.” Around midnight, we headed to Flames, which was supposedly really easy to find. Instead, we walked around the maze of a town searching for the “main square” and having no luck, and not really seeing anyone either. We finally came across a lady who we asked for directions, but, just our luck—she was deaf. She tried signing to us but this helped us approximately zero. We saw another person in the distance and she pointed to him and signed for us to ask him.
Luckily, this man had all five of his senses, and led us straight to Flames (which, by the way was not by anything I would consider a “main square” but more like a hole in the wall down a street close to a small Place…) We were gretted by Clarky and Dimetri and a few other people we had met playing sand volleyball and who also worked at Far Out. It was fun to spend our last night out “experiencing the nightlife” even though we were still insanely early (4 am).
The next day we attempted to check out but
had a few problems. As in something about the wire from this little desolate island to Athens was malfunctioning and therefore the hotel’s credit card machine wasn’t working. And then this also meant the ATM at the resort wasn’t working (we tried this too). They got the driver to drive us up to the ATM in town—same problem. So basically we couldn’t pay for our room and we didn’t really understand what they wanted us to do about it…Eventually we went to lay on the beach and to eat lunch by the pool and we just told them to find us when they fixed the problem, which eventually they did. You kind of don’t realize how in the middle of nowhere you are until you realize that all the ATMs on the island can just stop working…
We met an interesting fellow who shared our shuttle from the resort back to the port who was IN LOVE with Greece. He lives there now but is from the “I-land of Montreal.” (I don’t know.) He explained to us how Greece was great in so many ways, and how he loved his life because all his work was on his laptop
so he could do it anywhere—Ios, cafés, etc. (Truly showing the Greek way of life of doing nothing…) We ran away from him as soon as we got on the ferry, hoping to steer clear. Stay tuned for the next blog.
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