Santorini is the most beautiful place I’ve ever seen. Mind you, I’ve seen quite a lot of places. Greece is the 24th country I’ve traveled solo to. Greece in general is so beautiful but the beauty I saw in Santorini couldn’t be captured in a photo, an Instagram pic or anything I could post here that would do it any sort of justice. I’ll tell you that you need to find your way to Santorini and do it now because waiting is for those who don’t do.
So Santorini is like Mykonos with its white washed walls and roads and each corner similar to the one before. So my first night, as uncomfortable as I felt at first— I ventured into the city. OF COURSE as I am walking I see a wedding taking place. I thought to myself that this might be the most gorgeous place on earth to get married and then positioned myself in a photo bomb with them.
Not only did I find a wedding but I found the local Irish pub and got myself a pint. That was a great idea. The next day was Sunday and I woke up and took in my surroundings. I found myself with my feet in the pool, sipping on a cup of tea and trying to remember that last time I felt this relaxed. I couldn’t remember. Relaxation lately has been a faint memory so I breathed it in, deeply and exhaled the combustion I felt inside me. And then I napped on a sun chair…for two hours.
That night I went to see the famous Santorini sunset. This sunset has been written about in every Greek tourism book I read. I wondered if it could live up to its name. Well, it did… and then some. I sat and watched this sunset and felt like I was in a different world. How could this sun be the same sun that rarely ever gives me these brilliant colors when I am home? Maybe on a September night you could catch a glimpse of the range of pinks, purples and oranges I saw but what a rip off. Only a few days of one month a year do I get to see this? Greece, you win.
Monday I decided to take an excursion on a Catamaran boat. There were the normal tours but this one seemed to have more character and it offered a more personal experience. I’ve noticed no matter what experience I have, it’s only as rich as I make it. I always try to speak to the people giving me the experience to understand their background, how they got here and how they feel rather than be caught up in experiencing things as a solo tourist. At each restaurant, bar, shop, hotel and well…catamaran tour I’ve made a commitment to talk to the host.
The crew and myself 🙂 And they let me drive the boat!
During dinner on the boat I noticed one of the crew members sitting in the front and I asked if it would be ok to sit with her (given this was probably her “break time.”) She said “of course!” To make a long story short the two of us sat there for about 20 minutes and in that time period we both shared a personal story of what brought us to where we are today. She explained her background, the life her father had to endure for her to be where she was and the loss of her Grandmother in the recent weeks who was her last connection to her family history. I was astonished by her story and felt comfortable to answer her question when she asked me, “What’s the REAL reason you came to Greece?” This was a hard question to answer. To be very honest, the last month has been one of the hardest of my life for some personal reasons and although the trip was booked back in December, it couldn’t have come at a better time for me. I told her the details of some serious shit that went down and how there were things I was learning I needed to let go of, there were things that I had to come to terms with and there were things I needed to be reminded of.
While we were talking I hadn’t realized that we had made our way almost into a cave and then she turned to me and said, “wait for it.” I wasn’t sure what she meant but I trusted her as she kept repeating it. And then, in 3, 2, 1, as if I had never seen one in my whole life, the most gorgeous sunset popped through the side of the cave and then onto our boat. She turned to me and said “Give the sunset your worries. Leave them with her.” And, I did just that. Another huge breath of relief was exhaled as it was the day before. This time though a physical feeling of weight was being dropped into the ocean. This was only day 3 of Santorini and already I knew it was my happy place.
The view of 3, 2, 1….
She made me pose for this photo and I’m glad she did 🙂
This post was brought to you by this song for sure: