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Greece 2007

Kos, Greece

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After quick and very comfortable flight with Mytravel, we descend into the Kos heat and the tail end of a heat wave for 14 nights at the Stavroula (which we find out later is the owners name). Because it was so late we'd dumped the cases and headed right out to the Sunset for a great meal (cheers Tommy) and spotted Nanda and Jack cycling back from Kos town, who we were going to surprise they next day (as we hadn't told them we were coming). Luckily enough they didn't spot us.

The Stavroula was great value, quiet by day but a tad noisy by night, as its on the main road. Trade off is that is a very short walk to Dolphin Sq, the main landmark right in the middle of Kos town. The staff were always on hand and very friendly.

Next day we got some push bikes sorted. Apparently there are more bikes on Kos than in Amsterdam.. Hmmm Upshot is we got transport sorted for 40 for the two of us for two weeks. First trip was to the supermarket for some supplies for 'bar Leesie'. We popped into the Nefeli where Nanda and Jack were staying to surprise them but there were at the beach so instead agreed to return that night, which happened to be Greek Night. Total surprise was not the word when we turned up later. It was really great to see everyone again and after meeting up with Hellen and Reinier, having far to much sambucca we cycled back (in a not so straight line) to the Stavroula.

Next day we'd agreed to meet up with Nanda and Jack, as they'd be able to borrow a car, and go and explore the island. To do this with a hangover from hell was not my immediate motivation. I managed to avoid comatose and we all set of to visit Katrina, the Greek dancer, in Pili and had a 'on the house' coffee in her shop, then visited the old spring in the village before heading south to Kardemena for lunch.. or in my case lots of re-hydration therapy, shame as the food looked delicious. That afternoon we hit, the aptly named, sunny beach for a refreshing swim and restful sunbath. In the evening we all met in Hellas and said goodbye to Hellen and Reinier as it was their last night whilst doing my best to avoid the watermelon afters! We rounded the evening off in the Flamingo, not far from Dolphin Sq, with a coffee.

Following day we still had the motor so making use of it we set of to Limnionas, a sheltered bay on the north side of the Island. I had a gorgeous Greek salad (which I came to eat virtually every day for lunch) at the Restaurant there (There's only one called surprisingly enough the Limnionas). Later in the afternoon we played scrabble with a Dutch set. I'm sure there were a lot more EE's and Zed's in it than a British set! We agreed that if we got stuck we could use Dutch and scouse words, each partner backing up the very dubious words that were getting put down! A very Bizarre but interesting game.. Modesty forbids telling you who won :> .Later that night we ate souvlaki at the Nefeli and had another late night!

Next couple of days saw us spend time at Tingaki beach with Nada and Jack. Cycling the 9k to the beach (and 9k back) each day kept us fit, especially when the wind got up!. The beach there is well managed with Chrissy (having the best sun beds on the island for 3s!) and has a very gentle slope into the sea which useful during our bat and ball sessions (Jack and I weren't allowed water pistols so we chose the next best toy!). We often went to the Scala restaurant for lunch (again Greek salad for me) and were served by Jeremy and the 'taka taka mam' man with the fabulous pastel green/gold eyes! Sometimes there was donought man (and later donought boy) selling huge.. wait for it donoughts for 2 each. During this time we went to various places for our evening meals together, including Omerta, at the other end of town (great view but food just ok), Hellas (great traditional Greek food) and also at the Nefeli as their BBQ'd chicken and chips is the best on the planet! The last night we shared company with Nanda and Jack was at Hellas. Happy time on the food front as both Lisa and I have stuffed peppers and tomatoes. A few Mythos too! A sad night in a way as we were saying goodbye to our very good friends who been good enough to suffer us over the last week of their holiday and we were really going to miss them. We'd certainly miss Jack's dubious jokes (eg I kill everyone for a dollar.. but you are my friend... I will you for nothing). It had been great to spend a full week with them for a change, and to learn even more Dutch and to teach some scouse! A new language was formed Scutch. Nanda picked up our accent spookily really well and I'm sure she'll convince the locals if she ever visits Liverpool (her height may give the game away though :>). After a nightcap at the Nefeli it was back to our apartments with a look forward to a lie in!

Next day and we headed into Kos town for some dosh and ended up sitting in a cafe discussing why folk rush their coffee with the waiter. We didn't think that half an hour was rushing but he suggested an hour minimum. Apparently the Italians were the worst offenders for rushing off after just a few minutes. Back at the hotel for some sun bathing and we got chatting to the party who were leaving that day, some of whom originally lived in Kirkby, small world! We also spotted many a solar panel whilst soaking up the rays, how do they work anyway?! Watching the baby swallows (The family apparently come back each year to nest under the eves of the bar) learning to fly too was relaxing, as was the drink in the Hamam original, Diagora St in the old town later that evening. The curry at the Pak, near Dolphin Sq later on was however mediocre.

The following day was deemed Photo day. 1st stop was the Asklepieion, a hard slog on the bikes but worth the visit. For those of you who don't fancy the exercise there is a mini train which saves your legs. After lots of snaps taken, with everyone either getting in my way or hover behind me coping my shot (cheek!), it was back down the hill to Kos with a stop at Gins Corner for some Mythos treatment. Another snapping session at the Odeon and the West Archaeological Area before a great salad at the ambrosia in Diagora Sq served by 'Jimmy', who'd been to Liverpool in 1964 (not another claim on my ancestry surely!). Then, to 'finish the roll off', down to the harbour and some sunset shots at the beach. Later on we headed to the Sunset for some fab steak for me and Lisa had a chicken thing with sauce containing prawns!! eeee!! Apart from that shock it was top value and service to match all for a tenner each.

Next morning a very windy trip on the bikes to Tingaki. As a consequence of the wind the beach was rather empty but a great day to pick up a tan. Still Lisa managed to almost get stung by a wasp. Today, which became known as trauma day, Lisa also suffered getting snagged on the hand by the bikes handles and getting a peanut stuck on the forehead (which she was happily un aware of).

Sunday a day of rest? Nar more snaps to be taken, down by the Agora and of course an excuse for some beer in a cafe on the sea front (or back?) not far from the police station. The munchies kicked in and after a spinach and fetta filo pastry eventually got back to the hotel for some R&R. Later on we popped to the Nefeli as we'd heard there was roast (well spitted) lamb on offer.. Absolutely gorgeous it was. We also got to meet Rich (originally from South Africa) and Sharon from Ipswich, who were not long married, and unfortunately didn't meet them again.

Next few days saw us back at Tingaki beach. Weather was hotting up again so more knock abouts with the bat and ball and Greek salads at the Scala. On one of the nights we had a meal at the Ouzeri, which wasn't too bad but the steak from an animal of some sort or other, tasty enough though, was covered in sauce I never asked for! Finished off in Georges garden for a nightcap where we met 'Mrs George' who'd been in Oz when she was 9 for 9 years, 34 years ago and who still had a strong accent. Also found out that the guy in the Sunset was called Tommy and who had also been in Oz (hence the odd accent), small world.

The day before we left we'd booked a day out on the Archangel Michael. John Cross was the captain and Rob's sister, Steph the hostess (well their look a-likes anyway, check out the snaps!). The first stop was into a secluded cove on Kalamos an,d whilst the barbi was being set up, cooled off in the water and saw a few fish whilst snorkelling. It wasn't until later, when the scraps of the barbi were being thrown into the sea, did we realise how many fish there actually were. Best barbequed fish we'd ever eaten! After spending some time in Pserimos, second stop, we were back onboard polishing off some fruit salad before the sails went up. Amazing how quiet the boat was with just the wind for power, so relaxing, I almost fell asleep. Back in Kos we decided we'd got to the Hamam Oriental again for a drink, which became tea and turned out to be the best meal we'd had (last night doh!.. always the way!). We rounded the night off with a coffee and a Metaxa at 'Jimmys'.

On the last day we had breakfast on the tree-lined road off Lambi's main street before dropping into the Nefeli to say our goodbyes there. The bikes were dropped off then we settled down for the last swim and sunbath at the Stavroula. Pizza for tea at Antonios before the sad trip back to the airport. The plane we had coming back was n Airbus 330-200 with the loo's down stairs! Weird, as is what happens to a bag of crisps at altitude!


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