Thursday, 8 October 2009

Mykonos

After lunch the ship docked in Mykonos, just a few nautical miles from Delos.

I’d never been to Mykonos before, (we don’t get direct flights from our local airport) but I’ve seen all those lovely photos in the holiday brochures. It’s one of the smallest islands in the Cyclades, 16km (10 miles) by 11 km (7 miles) but one of the most popular holiday resorts in Greece.

We didn't venture any further than Mykonos Town where there was plenty to see. There are gleaming white washed houses and shops in a maze of narrow haphazard alleyways, well preserved windmills and lots of tiny churches. Designer shops and the usual tourist tat. It’s exactly like the postcards.

The bay is really a pretty sight with the Venetian style balconies overhanging the restaurants and cafes. In earlier days these were the distinguished houses of ship captains. I love this photo, the water was crystal clear.

Little Venice

The famous windmills of Mykonos are reminders of an earlier time when wind power was used to grind the island's grain. It's not easy to get a decent picture of them, they must specially organise the post card photo shoots. To the rear is a car park and I couldn't resist taking this photo of a car that's much dirtier than mine has ever been and it does get quite mucky. Shows how hot and dusty it is there.

Mucky car

Clean Me!

In front of the windmills was a huge skip. I managed to get a photo to the side of it and cropped most of it off and also someone's motor scooters.

Windmills


There are apparently 365 churches and chapels on Mykonos but I only took this one photo of a little chapel sandwiched between shops, houses and restaurants.

Little chapel

In the fifties, a group of migrating pelicans passed over Mykonos and apparently left behind a single exhausted bird, Petros. Vassilis the fisherman, nursed it back to health and locals say the pelican in the harbour is the original Petros. It's doubtful after all this time and there are several lurking around. This one seemed to be performing its ablutions in an appropriate place, the local loos!

Pelican

Petros?

There were numerous alleyways with tiny shops and houses. It was great to find some shade there. You couldn't really get lost though, it wasn't that big.

Alleyway

There were lots of lovely little shingley coves and sandy beaches where you could swim. Oh the heat! Wish I had taken my swimming costume.

Small cove

Just in case you're wondering, no that isn't our ship in the background. It was in Delos when we were there too.

Next stop Rhodes!

Post 120

Monday, 5 October 2009

The Cruise!

Our Ruby wedding anniversary was coming up in September so I decided that this time around I wasn’t conforming and having the party everyone expected. I’d done that first time around with the wedding. I’m not one for fuss so a wedding was quite stressful for me especially as my Mam was seriously ill at the time.

I decided that this time we were going away, just the two of us and doing something extravagant. So I booked a Mediterranean cruise, I’d always fancied a cruise but had never been able to justify the spending. Eric almost had a heart attack when I told him but he soon came around to the idea.

At the beginning of September we flew to Athens via Heathrow’s Terminal 5 and contrary to all the publicity it’s absolutely brilliant. We spent the night in Piraeus and then on Friday 4 September we boarded the ship. Wow I was amazed at how fantastic the ship was and they showed us to a lovely open air restaurant on the terrace at the back of the ship for lunch. Note I don't use the correct nautical terms! I have to say I was surprised at how fantastic the food was for the whole of the cruise, needless to say I didn’t skimp for the whole time.

I was looking forward to taking some really great photographs on this trip but when we got back I was disappointed at the quality of a lot of the photographs and I have no idea why. You’d imagine that given the wonderful Mediterranean light the pictures would be better than ones taken at home. Some were excellent but others weren’t and I haven’t a clue why. Maybe I need to take some photography classes!

The first morning, Saturday 5 September, the ship was at Delos.

Delos

The light was wonderful and the sky was a fantastic shade of blue. It was a great view to look out on and eat breakfast. Come to think of it we ate lunch looking out there too

Delos is an uninhabited island in the roughly circular ring of Greek islands called the Cyclades.

It had a position as a holy as a holy sanctuary for a millennium before Olympian Greek mythology made it the birthplace of Apollo and Artemis. In 1990, UNESCO inscribed Delos on the World Heritage List, citing it as the "exceptionally extensive and rich" archaeological site which "conveys the image of a great cosmopolitan Mediterranean port".

However I’m a bit of a Philistine, not desperately keen on ancient history so I decided to give it a miss. In addition it was scorching hot and there was no shelter at all on the island. I saved my strength for Mykonos later that afternoon!

So I've cheated and borrowed some photos from Wiki Commons to see what I missed.

Ancient Delos, Greece

House of Dionysus, Delos

Delos lions

Yes, I know, I really should have gone on that visit!

Post 119

Saturday, 3 October 2009

I'm Online Again!

Thanks to those of you who have been asking after me.

I haven't absconded or gone underground! I have had major problems with my service provider as I outlined earlier so I changed. Unfortunately the date for the new service was due to start the day before we went on holiday. True to form it didn't materialise so I managed to get sorted out when I got back.

Unfortunately there have been several other problems at home, not of the Internet type but I won't bore you with them. They haven't gone away but I'm coping with them.

Hopefully I'll post some photos of our lovely holiday soon. Meanwhile I'm suffering from withdrawal symptoms and I hope to catch up with what's happening on everyone's blogs.

Post 118

Remembrance Sunday

    By Special Collections Toronto Public Library from Toronto, Canada (In Flanders' Fields) In Flanders fields the poppies blo...