A Glimpse of Greece

for whatever we lose (like a you or a me)
it’s always ourselves that we find in the sea ~ e.e.cummings

As promised, here are a few photos from last summer’s surprise bargain holiday to Greece. It’s taken me a ridiculous amount of time to retrieve, resize and upload them – my troubled relationship with technology and social media will probably end my pathetic journey as a blogger – but even though they’re not technically that brilliant (I visit photography blogs with jaw droppingly stunning photos!) I took them so I could share a wee heart journey with you.

As I clicked away on a small, borrowed digital camera, like a child shrieking Wow! every time I saw something new, these little hymns of gratitude organised themselves into stories and journeys: my first day, discovering the stunning views from our windows and balconies; the glorious flower beds that bordered the many steps down to the restaurant and tiny, private beaches; the deserted, secluded swimming pool which we had all to ourselves for a week; the day trips to favourite hidden coves, as empty now as they were thirty years ago when I first discovered them…

We opened the shutters when we arrived and found this… a little bit of heaven on earth…

It took me five minutes to walk down to the café, pool and beach as I kept stopping to take photos on the way down…

I love organic design and glimpses of the sea!…

glimpse of the sea

Then there’s my obsession with flowers…

 

On our search for the swimming pool, I discovered a wee bit of heaven – a tiny cove, thirty seconds from the pool, two minutes from the café restaurant…

..then this gate… leading to my son‘s idea of heaven!…

We then went exploring and discovered the private beach next to the café…

…and stopped off at the restaurant itself for a beer before tackling the thirty million steps back up to our wee apartment! (There’s a reason our balconies had the best views!)

This is the view from the restaurant one lunch time…

…and at dusk…

The rest of the week, we were happy to stay close to home, occasionally visiting old friends or taking trips along the coast, showing my son old haunts he’d been to as a child but couldn’t remember…

He couldn’t believe he had his pick of deserted beaches. My daughter and I used to find amazing heart shaped stones here…

heart stone beach 2

We had iced coffees and ice creams in local cafés…

…and I was allowed to indulge my obession for photographing doors and windows…

One night, as we sat on the balcony, simply enjoying a beer till the last smudge of light disappeared over the horizon, I said a quiet prayer of gratitude for it all and for my husband, who understands me and makes it all possible. The things I’ve spent my life doing – parenting, homemaking, caring for my elderly dad since his heart attack, writing, translating, teaching, painting, singing, songwriting, photography, homelife coaching – all require intense presence, focus, engagement… an ability to love details and just enjoy being. Greece is where I refuel my soul when life has left me depleted.

I’m glad you visited today; I really did take these with you in mind.

 

14 thoughts on “A Glimpse of Greece

  1. Janice, I woke up feeling decidedly under the weather, and by mid morning thought I’d better check my emails. So glad I did! I’ve peered through an ancient doorway and caught a glimpse of a faraway heaven. I have tasted the salt air, felt the soft sand between my toes, delighted in the vibrant geraniums. Thank you for taking me along with you to Greece and replenishing my body and soul. I am now ready to take on the day……. mind you, my legs are aching from all those steps!!

    • Hi Jane,
      I really appreciate you making it to the end of this post that turned into an album, especially as your own photos are so gorgeous. (I could have been more selective or cropped these, but I deliberately didn’t crop or play with them as they’d never have got posted!) After two days of waking up to {0} comments, finding your lovely comment has made me feel the same, like my day will be OK. An empty comment box shouldn’t worry me – it was me that took my blog into the cave when I hibernated, knowing full well that blogs need care, watering, feeding, light and attention – but comment boxes – mine and other folks’ – are actually my favourite bit of blogging.

      I’m attempting Twitter again, as you know, in an attempt to train myself to stay connected while saying less, but I’m awful at it. Apart from never having mastered the basics of it, I start out intending to point everyone to everything I’ve found that I like, but end up logging off because I’m overwhelmed at how much marvellous inspiration is out there, or I tweet too much and too often and it never ends. In these boxes, my rhythmn slows. I share my pleasure and gratitude at someone taking the time to connect, and my response to their comment.

      In other folks’ boxes, if I’m not having a ‘look only’ day, I like the focus that one piece, or a selection of photos gives me. Commenting is a form of practice for me; it grounds me in the moment, makes me appreciate people’s creations, their talents, their desire to create and share with the world.

      Thank you for taking the time to pop over!

  2. Already feeling transported, when I got to the first hidden cove I inwardly swooned, Janice. Greece is on my bucket list. Thank you for thinking of ‘us’ and now offering a virtual vacation. Ah, the thought of being by the sea, in the sea . . . Watery me, Connie

    • Hi Connie – happy to see you back online! The whole holiday had me alternately swooning and shrieking “Look!” like a toddler, even after thirty odd years! I’m glad you enjoyed a wee virtual vacation; I know I’m a cliché on legs, but it really was a case of wanting to share the journey!

    • Ah, if only…. these were stuck in the borrowed camera I used on holiday last summer after I dropped and broke mine; then they had to wait till I learned Windows 8.1, WordPress 4.1 and Thesis 1.8.6 before they finally made it into a post. Lots of unsought (but useful) techno-learning for such an ordinary wee post! But I promised I’d post them and it was bugging me that I hadn’t managed to. Maybe now I could attempt a photo a week challenge, like you’re doing, without pulling my hair out! Thanks for popping over and for the twitter support!

  3. Sorry to be so late in visiting. We had a crazy week and weekend. That said, I love the pictures and they are beautiful. I can’t even pick a favorite. Every one made me say, “Wow!” Now I want to go to Greece.

    I also love the heart shaped stone next to the pretty coffee cup:~)

    Thank you for sharing these pictures and your trip to Greece!
    Sara recently posted…Cat Predicts the LONG Winter is Ending!My Profile

    • Hi Sara,
      You need never apologise for visiting late or not visiting; it’s always a pleasure to have you here!

      I’m glad you enjoyed the photos, though I reckon I could maybe have shown a wee bit of restraint! 😉 I have no shame about trying to lure you out to Greece, though – it’s magical and would inspire you.

      The mug is on a window ledge next to my back door where I sit on the step when I’m having a coffee break; that’s where I park my coffee when I go off wandering in the garden or inside to do something. If you look closely, there’s a green heart stone in the corner, too; that entire beach has lots of green stones as the mountain’s made of a gorgeous green black rock I don’t know the name of.

    • Hi Joanna – good to see you! I can’t remember the names of the islands you visited, only that your photos were glorious – so much bright sea and blue sky! A few failed, foggy, soggy attempts to visit Skye put me off Scottish island trips, and I’m a wimp when it comes to midges. (I’m allergic and they don’t seem to be as easily repelled as mosquitoes.) But your photos made me wonder why on earth I haven’t even attempted to visit the Hebrides! I’m a rubbish Scot, and so ashamed when foreign friends visit and I have to hit the tourist guide books. You’ve already managed the first steps in luring me up to the islands, though; my husband and I were sitting chatting about it the other evening, wondering where we’ll go for short breaks when our youngest goes off to uni. 😉

  4. Hi Janice .. I need that holiday .. pulled the hip out a bit – I think all will be ok .. giving it time to settle – it’s still under 8 weeks! But it’s never hurt til now … and the boiler broke – so have to ‘cart’ hot water round .. that hurts too .. such is life sometimes.

    But summer is coming … well spring first! and longer days – love those. Had a card from Barra from one of my mother’s cousins – it was wondrous to see the colours – but we get those here too at times … the light is always changing …

    So pleased for you that you were able to refurbish those batteries and have a little time out to take stock … take care … and I hope it warms up soon for you … cheers and hugs – Hilary
    Hilary recently posted…Cheapside Hoard: Goldsmiths, Bankers, Jewellers, Pawnbrokers and Toymen …My Profile

    • Thanks, Hilary! I know you’re fiercely independent, but is there no-one you could stay with just until the boiler’s fixed? Can’t bear the thought of you hobbling around lugging hot water. My first thought was that it would be great if you could recuperate with your mum’s cousin on Barra and just soak up all the beauty and build up your walking strength but the trip there would probably send you right back into the hospital. Same with coming here, although you know you’re welcome. (I’m a vicious matron – there would be enforced rest, gradual exercise and lots of obligatory reading, film watching, Greek food eating and blogging! 😉 )When’s the soonest you could have a wee holiday to look forward to?

    • Hi Barbra! You’d love it – they even have wifi! 😉 The cluster of buildings is owned and run by a mother and daughter, and the food in the on-site restaurant is amazing! Because the owner’s husband was the architect who’d designed and built the complex, she keeps the grounds beautifully maintained to honour his memory.

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