August 2014 Update

August 2014 update Garry McGivern’s regular monthly update. At the beginning of the month, I decided to create a Facebook page. Not too sure why, boredom I think. I also changed my website around, which hopefully makes a little more sense with different feeds going to their respective pages instead of them all going to the same page! I’ve also added a button so people can subscribe to my email updates that I do when I’m travelling, just as I used to do way back before I set up this website.

I’ve started to try and write my book again. God, it seems like hard work. I get distracted so easily and take any opportunity to stop! Interestingly, though, when I was reading through my old blogs, I noted that whilst I was stuck in Bangladesh waiting for my visa to China and I hadn’t been on my bike for a week or more, my back/leg started to play me up again then!

Garry’s on Holiday

Julie was on holiday towards the end of the month, and we were meant to be cycling to Paris. But Julie managed to think of an excuse not to do it! So we found a cheap deal to Santorini and flew there for a few days instead.

We arrived in Santorini at midday on Wednesday the twentieth and didn’t really do too much the first day. We just stayed in and around the hotel working out what there was around us and also what there was to do. The hotel was located in Monolithos to the east of the island. There was only one other small hotel a little supermarket and two restaurants nearby, absolutely perfect for us, not too many other tourists!

Off Exploring

On the second day we caught a bus to Fira, the main town on the island. We got there surprisingly fast neither of us realised just how small the island was. It only covers about 28 square miles! Fira is a town with white-washed buildings built on top of a cliff overlooking the Caldera. It was a very busy place with hordes of tourists. It’s a very popular destination for cruise ships to stop off at. There were 2 in the harbour the day we were there! They seemed to have a lot of Americans and Australians on board, judging by the accents we heard and the people we spoke to. There didn’t seem to be much of a choice of shops there just seemed to be an abundance of jewellery shops in fact it was mainly jewellery shops, but Julie didn’t mind that as she likes looking around them and it was her birthday today!

A city on a cliff by the sea
The Evening

In the evening we went down to one of the restaurants near our hotel called “Captain Loizos” and had a lovely fish meal, which I was also hoping to get the previous evening when we came to this same place. The menu said small fish, which I thought would be a small fish which it was; in fact, it was loads of small fish, whitebait! Not quite what I had in mind, but it tasted fine.

I wasn’t going to make that mistake tonight and managed to order a lovely red snapper which wasn’t on the menu. After supper, we went back to the hotel and got talking to the people in the apartment next to us. It was a mother and daughter from Norway called Katrina; not too sure what the mother’s name was. It was a proper Norwegian name which sounded something like Steve (which apparently in Norway has an entirely different meaning altogether!)

Causing Trouble Again

We sat talking and drinking with them for a good couple of hours. That was until Mr Grumpy from the apartment above complained about the noise we were making! We probably were a little on the loud side, but instead of him asking us nicely to keep the noise down a bit, he was just rude and told us to shut up! Red rag to a bull that was both to me and Katrina we did quieten down but kept making digs at him so he could hear; he eventually closed his balcony window with a loud slam, which made us laugh. Mission accomplished, we managed to piss him off. If he’d asked us nicely in the first place to quieten down, we would have. But because of the way he asked, we certainly weren’t going to be too cooperative!

We did the same the following night on purpose just to annoy him. We could hear him grunting and groaning again until he slammed his balcony door. Nobody else had a problem with us, only him. But then he was the only one stupid enough to have the balcony door open. Everybody else kept theirs closed, so the air conditioning worked! He was even on our flight home with his stupid “kiss me quick” hat on, which just about summed him up!

It’s A Small Island

On the third day, we hired a car and managed to see the whole island before midday. (that’s how small the island is, or maybe that’s how bad a tourist I am!) We drove up to the Prophet Elias Monastery, which is located on the top of a mountain. The highest point on the island. From up there, you could see the whole island. Really weird being able to look down on the island’s airport and watch the airplanes taking off and landing.

In the evening we went to Oia in the north of the island to watch what is described as one of the best sunsets anywhere. I can’t say it did it for me, sure it was nice but I’ve seen better! Julie was a little disappointed, too. But the town of Oia was really nice, and we both preferred it to Fira. I could see why people went there.

The last day was spent on the beach and around the hotel. We also went back to “Captain Loizos” restaurant one last time. When we called for the bill, the owner wouldn’t let us pay he said it was on him. What a lovely, kind gesture. Shame people who own bars and restaurants in this country don’t recognise loyalty a bit more!! (Yes, that’s a dig at one of my locals!) We flew back that evening after having a really nice four-day break.

Other News

Finally, I’ve got a date to go to hospital and have an injection in my back. Unfortunately, it isn’t until the very end of September but at least I now have a date.

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