Friday, May 13, 2011

Day 11 - On to Sifnos

Since I am having some trouble with Blogger, not to mention the uncertainty of finding good internet, I'll try to catch up on this blog and get as many entries in as possible. As you might have guessed, I am hopelessly behind on these posts. We are on day 14 of our trip, so that gives you some idea of where I stand, but that's mainly because we have been having a great time and there's not much time to write. I figured we'd be on the islands, sitting on a deck soaking up the sun, and I would have tons of free time to blog, but that has not been the case. This is not a bad thing, mind you, I'm just behind.

Anyway, enough of ranting. After three days, we were off to Sifnos, another of the Greek chain. I learned there are thousands of islands that are part of Greece, and they break them up into regions. We are in the Cyclades, which is the central part of the Agean. You could spend a lifetime investigating these islands, and we would love to travel them more. I personally would love to check out Crete, but more on that later.

We were sad to say goodbye to Milos, I really enjoyed it there, and liked our hosts very much. We had a ferry to catch, however, and that meant getting to Adamas. We left the car at the hotel, where they said they'd pick it up (no hassles), and then a cab came to get us. It was the same driver who picked us up, and when I tried to converse with him, he'd give me a quick smile, nod, and then return his attention to running over pedestrians. You have to love that kind of focus.

We spent zero time in Adamas during our stay, but had some time to check it out while waiting for the ferry. Our hosts contacted the travel agent who contacted the cab and had them pick us up early so we'd have time at the port. It's like many port towns, lots of tourist oriented businesses like gift shops, lots of food, and rental car agencies. Business was clearly slow, and many of the businesses were closed, a fact we experienced again and again when we went searching for food on Milos. Many, if not most, of the restaurants were not even open yet.

Also, we had a funny experience with the ferry. The boat was supposed to leave at 1:00, and we got to the dock around 12:00. We had something to drink, and got a snack, and the kids played with the cats while R took pictures and I sat and watched the locals.

The boat was sitting there the entire time, but a large crowd of people was standing around behind a gate. Being the sheep that we are, we simply got in with the crowd and waited. At some point, R indicated that she was a little concerned because the boast was slated to leave in ten minutes, and nobody was getting on. The gangplank was down and open, it's just that all the people were standing there.

R finally took out her tickets and asked some of the people standing in line what the deal was. After glancing at her ticket, the guys realized it was our boat, and it was about to launch. All of a sudden, all these people started screaming in Greek for the ferry to wait for us. It was quite a scene. It turns out that there was a ferry coming right after this one, and that was what all the people were waiting for.

Either way, the guard came over and told us to calm down, we still had ten minutes. He let us through, and we got on, relieved. The ferries run only once every few days, so if you miss your boat, you're out of luck. There are some who embrace the whimsical nature of travel and feel that if you miss the boat, then you get to spend more time on this beautiful island, but us neurotic Americans who feel the need to control our world and live by a schedule often times have a hard time understanding this.

We made the boat, and it was immediately apparent that we were practically the only people on board. Kind of eerie. We had the pick of any seat in the house, and made ourselves at home, though the question ran through my head, why were all those other people not on this ferry. It was redolent of an episode of Twilight Zone. Plus, since the wind has been so bad, the ride was rough, and I encountered some mild inklings of getting seasick. The boat was pitching pretty significantly, though the kids didn't blink an eye. I found myself having to go up on the deck for fresh air, and R spent most of the trip up there. I eventually came downstairs and took a nap, though I woke up with a bit of a headache. The kids got a huge kick out of giving me a hard time for being such a wimp.

Thankfully, the trip was short, and we arrived in Sifnos. Though I was sad to say goodbye to Milos, I would soon learn that we loved and enjoyed Sifnos even more, but that's a story for another blog entry.

Until then, thanks for reading, and thanks to RIC for the pics.

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