Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Saying Good-Bye to Greece

I fell in love with Greece. There's no other way to put it. Our time there was enchanting, magical, almost mystical, and I don't think there's a time when I've ever felt closer to Mark.

We left Mykonos at 3:00 a.m., earlier than planned because high winds were expected in the Aegean. The captain altered our itinerary a bit, and we sailed all morning toward Kythnos. Most of the passengers did what we did that morning - sat out on the sun deck reading, enjoying the sun and the fresh sea air.

Around mid-day, we arrived off the coast of Kythnos for a swim.

Mark swam from our ship to the sand bar in the distance. I was too chicken.

From there, we sailed to Poros, across the Saronic Gulf from Athens and its harbor at Piraeus. Storm clouds began gathering in late afternoon. That night, we had the Captain's Dinner.

The town of Poros

George, the chief steward/hotel manager. He told us he had lived in Utah in the 60's and had worked at La Caille. 

Shortly after Mark had taken these pictures, we decided we weren't that hungry and got up and went back to our room. Within 10 minutes of us returning to our cabin, it poured down rain. We later heard that the passengers sitting at the end of the dining deck got soaked and all the tables had to be hastily moved away from the edges of the deck.

The next morning, however, it was beautiful. Mark and I took a walk around the town of Poros, while others went off to see an ancient amphitheater.

That afternoon, we motored back to Piraeus and had our last dinner on board that evening (but down below in the enclosed dining room). It was a memorable evening as we had an opportunity to talk with some of our fellow passengers whom we hadn't gotten to know very well. First, there were Paul and Margaret, a delightful older English couple who live in a charming village in East Sussex. Then there were Lynn and Andy, another of the half-dozen or so Australian couples on board. We hadn't talked to them before, which was a shame because they are charming people as well. Among other things, Lynn shared with us how heart-warming she thought it was that Mark and I felt we could and did show affection for one another. That made us feel good.

All too soon, Friday morning came and it was time to say goodbye to the Panorama II, to the sea and to Greece. We knew as we left, however, that we would (hopefully) be back ... someday.

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