Yesterday was Sunday.

I was lazy till mid afternoon. Stayed in bed watching the British Open and then a movie.

Ernie Els won the British Open. I was pleased for him. He has had a difficult time the past few years. He is on the downward spiral of his career. Then from out of the blue, he wins a major championship!

I thought Tiger Woods might do what Els did. However, Tiger faded as the day went on.

Poor Adam Scott. Played fantastic golf for 3 days and 14 holes. Then the world fell in on him! I suspect he choked. It happens. He bogeyed the last 4 holes.

Els’ demonstrated the champion he was when he sunk a 15 foot birdie putt on the last hole to tie Scott.

It was an early dinner at the Yacht Club. Lisa and the family joined me. First time I had seen Robert since he returned. He enjoyed it all! He told me about his first baseball game watching the Marlins play, swimming with the dolphins again, and bacon.

Lisa is fanatic about what she feeds her children. Little meat. Turkey bacon. None of that fatty greasy stuff.

Robert had bacon every morning at camp. Real bacon. He acquired a taste for it. Went to the salad bar twice last night to refill his plate with bacon pieces.

Ally was wearing the dress I bought her in Navaro. Long and white. Beautiful. An angel.

It was Chinese night. Everything was brought to the table family style. Robert demonstrated something else he did for the first time at camp. He ate with chop sticks. Clumsily, but he did it. With no fanfare. He picked them up and started eating. Never said to anyone that he knew how.

I expect Robert and Ally here at any moment. I am babysitting today. I am taking them to Five Guys for lunch. Bacon cheeseburgers. Robert will go wild!

Stopped at the Chart Room for a drink. A good crowd. JJ, David, Captain Peter and Frankie. I was amazed. These guys were talking about Paula Deen. They all knew of her and watched her Food Network shows. David ran into her at Fausto’s and exchanged a brief pleasantry with her.

Deen cooks Southern style. Lots of butter. The Chart Room group talked about her appearance on Oprah. Oprah asked/told Deen….. all that butter, isn’t it unhealthy. Deen replied…..I am a cook, not a doctor.

She was here for the Hemingway Look Alike Contest. Her husband Michael Groover was entered. He did not win. No shame. There were 139 other contestants. My friend Hemingway Hank did not win either. He was a finalist for the ninth time.

I was not aware that Paula Deen was known to so many. I find it interesting that her cooking show has so many viewers from all walks of life. The whole world watches her!

Then to the movies. Tropic Cinema. Wanted to see To Rome With Love. Do not bother going. I was disappointed in the film. It never came together.

Roberto Benigni was in the film. He is the Italian actor that won the Academy Award for Best Actor about ten years ago. He was the only good thing in a film which had many big stars.

Besides Benigni, there was a part of the film that excited me. Benigni was a white collar worker. He and his family lived in a nice apartment in a typical Italian building. In one scene, Benigni walks out the front door of the building and is overwhelmed by the press. In the background is a clothesline with clothes hanging to dry on it. A first floor clothesline.

The same type clothesline I saw in every part of Italy I visited. Clotheslines were everywhere to be seen on the trip. Prosperous homes, poor homes. Window to window, as in the film. On front porches, also.

Ran into Stacey and Robert at the theatre. Donna’s daughter and son in law. Donna and Terri arrive on the 29th for a week.

Joe Paterno’s statue came down in the wee hours of the morning yesterday. Six thirty. Like a thief in the night. An acquiesence to the mob’s cry for blood.

His statue will be returned to its place of honor in 10-20 years. America is forgiving.

I could not help thinking as I watched the covered statue being removed of Shakespeare’s words. Uttered by Mac Anthony in eulogy to the dead Ceasar…..The evil that men do lives after them, the good is oft interred with their bones.

The Greek portion of my trip is constantly popping up in my head. I truly enjoyed Greece.

Enjoy your day!


Yesterday, I looked like a homeless man coming out from under the bridge in the morning. Ravished! Could not make myself look good. Did not feel good. Did not care. The condition is called jet lag.

The first thing I did was the last two days of my blog. The travel blog. Today, back to normal. I shall miss the travel portion. However, I am glad to be home and writing again about the mundane things in my life.

In my Key West wanderings yesterday, I missed something. Something I saw on an almost daily basis in Europe. Clotheslines full of wash. Things do look better howeverr without the wash hanging outside.

There is one thing I definitely do not miss. The computers. European computers have different key pads. Italy was the worst. Many letters were not where they are on American computers. @ was different on Italian and Greek computers. Both in different places. These thingst made doing the blog at least one third longer in time. So many mistakes to correct!

Epilogue comming. I have a double disc of over 600 photos. Doing it beyond my capabilities. Need Sloan. We will start in the next couple of days.

I lost some weight on the trip. Thought I did. Only 5 pounds. But, 5 pounds is 5 pounds. It was the hills and stairs. Not the food. I ate everything. My stomach is down. More than 50 per cent. Again, the hills and stairs.

Unpacked a bit off and on yesterday. Plain did not feel like doing it. Have more to do today. Need to get Anna over. I have a ton of dirty clothes. The longer I was away, the less I washed.

Need a couple of naps during the day. Went to sleep at 7 last night. Up now at 3. I stayed up as long as I could last night.

Needed a manicure. Saw Tammy at Lee Nails. She did not like my beard! Crushed me! The first one who did not. Even my daughter Lisa liked it. Tammy said it made me look older.

Tammy followed my blog day by day while I was on the trip. Made me feel good.

The cupboard really was bare. Anna had cleaned out the refrigerator. I had to go to Publix. I only got half of what I needed. No fruit. My head was screwed up.

Ran into Ryno as I was pulling into the Publix parking lot. Ryno is one of Key West’s premier radio people. Every day for several hours. Ryno started me out on radio at KONK three years ago. He was the station engineer. He is from Watertown, N.Y., about 15 miles from my hometown of Utica. A sweet person.

I rolled the window down and we chatted a bit. He referred to me as the globe trotter. He was reading the blog, also. Thank you, Ryno.

I need a haircut. I have hair for the first time in years. Growing out every which way. I am going to keep some hair. Needs trimming bad, however. Even Tammy said…..Get a haircut!

My appointment with Lori is 10:15 this morning. I should look beautiful and ready for my Key West world afterward.

Two stops definitely today. Don’s Place around 4. Then the Chart Room at 6. Then I will really be back!

When I left Key West, the sun was shining. Little, if any, rain. I return two months later and Key West is into the rainy season. Night and day. Pouring outside right now. Thunder and lightning over the ocean. Nothing like ocean lightning at night! It joins you in bed.

Enjoy your day!

DAY 42

The honeymoon is over!

I return to Key West tomorrow. Monday, not Tuesday as I thought. Fortunately, Lisa picked up on my error. She Skyped me yesterday to tell me I was going to have missed my plane if I left Tuesday.

On a trip as I have experienced, days of the week and dates get screwed up. Intermingle. Are not important.

As a result of which, a person can miss a return flight home!

My today – Sunday – now changes. No Milan. No Leonardo Da Vinci. Instead rest and packing.

I am in Novara. Drove here from Camogli yesterday afternoon. A two hour drive. Thruways all the way.

Strange traffic for a summer Saturday afternoon. None. Just me and a few other cars.

It is the cost of gas and high road tolls here in Italy.

The other vehicles on the road all passed me at 125 miles per hour. Crazy!

The clothesline saga continues. Eevry town and hamlet I drove by…..there they were! Clothes hanging ouside windows and on front porches. Even here in Novara, a classy city.

Lisa Skyped me in the afterfnoon. Fortunately. Otherwise, I would have missed my plane tomorrow. Got to see and chat with the grandkids and son in law Corey. I could tell I am really missed. A nice feeling.

Last night was another birthday dinner. My Morrocan friend Miriam cooked for me. And several others as well. A dinner party.

We started with a good champagne. During dinner, Beefeater was substituted for me. A thoughtful gesture.

Pickies to begin. Too many to describe. All good.

Then humus. Not the kind you buy in the supermarket and scoop onto a plate. Miriam made the humus from scratrch. Ground the checi beans herself.

The entre was spiedini. Small pieces of beef on a stick. Miriam also prepared some sort of wheat dish mixed with very tiny pieces of tomato and covered with just enough oil.

There was a touch of Lebanese to the meal.

Miriam exceeded herself with the birthday cake. Made by her from scratch, also. A cheesecake covered with blueberries and gelato. Of course on top 77 candles. One big 70 years old one and 7 tiny one year ones.

Everyone sang Happy Birthday! Just like in the U.S.

I was pleased with it all. My special thanks to Miriam.

Today I have to get ready for tomorrow. I will leave Novara about 6 in the morning. I have a one hour drive to the Milan airport. Then many hours in the air till I set down in Key West just after 9 in the evening.

Enjoy your Sunday!

DAY 41

I am doing this blog in Camogli each morning from some sort of travel office. The office provides internet rental service. The place is always crowded. However, I have not seen one person buy anything except me. Six euros of computer time each morning.

After completing yesterday’s blog, I took a walk. Down strange streets and alleys. The alleys are not bad. It is the stairs. Everywhere. Italians must have strong hearts!

I was tired after the walk. Took a nap. Ended up sleeping most of the afternoon away. It is very humid here. It contributes to my tiredness.

I found a Don’s Place in Camogli, Italy. A French cafe on the waterfront. Why Don’s Place? A tanqueray on the rocks was only 4 euros. The cheapest anywhere else in Camogli at least 8 euros. Many 10 or 12. And then there is Portofino where it cost me 17 euro for a gin and tonic.

The owner is a nice guy also. Don again. He spoke English. Was married 5 years ago in La Hoya. Knows Los Angeles and San Diego well. His in laws live in California.

Most bars give you something to eat with a drink. Generally a small dish of potato chips. This guy put out chips, nuts, 2 types of small pieces of pizza, green and back olives soaked in oil, carrot sticks and I cannot recall what else.

What a bargain to drink at this particular French cafe!

Dinner afterwards was with some people I had met earlier in the day. We dined at a very nice out door restaurant which jutted over the Mediterranean. Dinner was by candlelight.

Camogli’s beach is a horseshoe. To my left while dining was a hill. Some of the trees and some of the rocks were bathed in lights. I could see nothing else. Turns out there are hotels hidden behind the trees and the lights were provided by the hotels.

To my right was the length of the beach with a large Church at the end. The Church was all lite up. Beyond the Church, I could see the lights of Genoa.

My appetizer was cod in milk. I have no idea why I ordered it. I am glad I did. It was good. The cod was neither dry nor salty. The meat actually flaked off onto your fork.

For dessert, I had cannoli. Two of them.

Cannolòi must have been a poor man’s dish. I can remember my Mother frequently making them when we lived third floor front on Jay Street. She had hard wood rollers. Looked like hot dogs. She prepared the dough from scratch. Then stretched the dough around the wood forms. They were then dropped into a pan of boiling oil.

When they came out and were cooled, she stuffed the shells with ricotta somehow sweetened. They were good!

I had them again last night and remembered my Mother. Quite frankly, the ones I had last night were no were as good as Mom’s.

I happened to mention to the people I was with that it was my birthday. They bought my dinner.

I return today to Novara. A couple I met have invited me to dinner. The wife is the Moroccan I have mentioned previously. I have been told there will be a cake, also. This should be one great meal! The woman is a professional chef.

Clotheslines again. I am hooked on them.

I failed to mention yesterday that I saw the same thing in Portofino. Yes, very rich Portofino had clothes hanging out windows of very expensive condo buildings and private homes. Not as much as elsewhere. Maybe one or two windows or porches every 3-4 buildings.

I hope to get to Milan over the weekend. Other than flying in, I have not really seen it. There is a Leonardo Da Vinci painting that has been recommended to me.

Many have inquired where are the pictures? No pictures? There are a ton of them. I have two discs of 300 each.

My computer talents are limited. Getting the blog out each morning on this trip has been a task. Pictures too! No way could I have handled it.

I plan on issuing a followup to my DAYS with a couple of days of pics. I am going to try to group and label them so you can fit them in to the experiences shared with you.

Enjoy your day!

DAY 38

Good bye Courmier and Chamonix!

Hello Camogli!

I had a three hour drive to get to Camogli yesterday. It took four. Construction. Two of three lanes closed. For 20 miles.

I have been vacationing too long. It seems I have acquired patience. It did not bother me. Plus, I had the Alps on each side of me. Great viewing at all times.

Castles accompanied me the whole way. Even as I got close to Camogli. Whereas I said yesterday they were about a mile apart, they seemed even closer during the drive. The castles are exciting to see. All different. Except for location. Each on top of a steep hill. Churches also, of course.

After viewing so many castles and being aware of the fighting that went on between them over the years, I do not know how Garibaldi got the various kings to join in and create one nation in 1861. An accomplishment!

Clotheslines were with me also the whole trip. Even now in Camogli. Greece and Italy are loaded with them. It seems to be the only way to dry clothes in those countries. Clotheslines between windows and on balconies and terraces. Sometimes merely a rope between two windows.

I have been of the impression that there are no dryers because of the electrical problem. I have been asking the natives. They tell me no. It is because they prefer their clothes to be sun dried. I do not buy it. But…

Even million euro/dollar apartments hang their wet clothes out.

I suspect that if someone could invest a dryer that needed little or no electricity, Italians would run to buy them.

An interesting experience occurred on one of the thruways I was driving. Italian gas stops have restaurants and stores just as in the U.S. Not Mac Donald types. Better wholesome food. And anything else you can consider buying.

I had an ice cream. I was waiting in line to pay for it. A middle aged woman in a black dress was in front of me. She had made a 51 euro buy. A big buy for such a store. She told the girl behind the counter she had just became aware she had to feed the whole family in the evening.

The woman paid the 51 euros with three 20s. The girl checked out the bills. They use a machine to do it in Italy. No crossing with a marker.

The girl said the bills were no good. The woman got upset. I just got them from the bank, she said. She pulled out a large bunch of 20s. Tried to pay two more times. None of the bills good. Finally the woman paid with genuine Italian money.

Outside were two tough devious looking men watching the whole proceeding. She went out to them and the whole three got in a car and drove away.

The girl behind the counter spoke English. That is the reason I am able to relate this story. She explained it all to me afterwards.

Parking sucks in Camogli. The condominium I am using is located on the water. There is no parking on the water. Nor for a couple of blocks behind the rows of waterfront buildings. I had to park far far away. Then drag and roll my suitcase up and down little hills. Additionally Camogli is all steps. Reminded me of Rome. I had to carry the bag up the steps.

I find it amazing. Each time I am confronted by steps, they go up. Never down.

I am getting stronger. Six weeks ago I would have died. After all the hilly walking I have done this trip, my body is getting accustomed to it.

Every place I have visited has had a different flavor. As does Camogli. It is the Italy as I thought it would be. Old medieval buildings, steps, people chattering incessantly and loudly.

The buildings are medieval. Each more than a thousand years old. Along the waterfront, which by the way is the Mediterranean, they are six stories high. The first floor consists of stores and restaurants. Second through sixth floors apartments. No elevators in any of the buildings. Steep narrow staircases in each.

In the U.S. the higher the floor, generally the more expensive. Not in Camogli. Because of the lack of elevators, the higher up you go, the cheaper the apartment.

Of course, no air conditioning in any of these buildings. Open windows and fans instead.

Camogli is on the western side of Italy. Significantly above Rome. Immediately next to Portofino. There is a mountain on the sea shore separating Camogli and Portofino. It is called Mount Portofino.

Last night I ate in Camogli rather than run over to Portofino. I was tired from the drive. From what I am told, Camogli and Portofino are the same. Perhaps Portofino later today.

I had dinner at a sea side cafe around 11. Too late, I know. However, I was hungry.

I selected the cafe because there were white tablecloths and what turned out to be real silver and china glasses.

I was not disappointed. I had one terrific meal! The entre was lamb encased in ground pecan nuts . It was served on top of a bevy of cooked fruits and vegetables mixed. The key was the taste. There was an oil which appeared to keep the pecans attached to the lamb. Whatever, it was delicious. One of the finest meals I have ever enjoyed.

Greece was cheap dollarwise. Italy is expensive. Like 3-4 times.

I was tired after dinner. A bit bloated. It was after midnight. The area was still bustling. I went immediately to bed.

Enjoy your day!

DAY 34

I am back in Italy!

Flew to Milan and then was driven the one hour to Novara.

Humid here in Novara. Very. I can understand why Italians run off to the mountains and sea shore in the summer months. They have no air conditioning!

No air for two reasons. The cost of electricity is one. The other is that most of the buildings are so old it would either be too expensive or too difficult to air condition.

Which means I slept with my bedroom window wide open last night. I also had the benefit of two fans. Hopefully I will be on Mount Blanc this evening where humidity will not be a problem. I have been told the fireplace may have to be used. It is that cool in the evening. Makes sense. Mount Blanc is the highest peak in the Alps and Europe.

Flew Aegean Air again. A treat! Lovely young attendants, stewardesses, hostesses helping. A great meal. Only a two hour flight. Not much more to tell, except for my chat with two of the working ladies.

They are not called attendants or stewardesses. They are hostesses. The hostesses are all young.

I explained how it all works in the U.S. They could not believe men did their work and what they were called and who performed the work was an issue of gender discrimination.

As to age discrimination, they had never heard of such a thing. They were confident that no way would a mature woman be permitted to do their job.

A different country. Different thoughts and concepts. Interesting.

One thing did not change. Clotheslines and drying clothes. They were evident everywhere on my car ride to Novara. Just as in Greece.

I chatted with some friends last night in Novara. The issue? The euro. What else!

They find this present marriage of sorts between Germany and France strange. The two nations have been fighting for years. They were referring to wars. France generally got kicked good by the Germans. They were unable to understand how the French could now be a junior partner with Germany.

The Italians are really mad at the Greeks. with a fervor that did not exist three weeks ago when I left Italy. They feel the Greeks have spent Italian euro money and did it in a wasteful fashion. I find this amusing since Italy is third from the bottom in this euro crisis. It is just a question of time before Germany starts defecating on them.

I was early to bed. A tired day traveling.

Today hopefully Mount Blanc.

Enjoy your day!

DAY 30

An interesting experience this morning.

I was sitting on the terrace reading. It was very early. The sun had just risen.

I assumed the rest of Amorgos was still sleeping. It was. Except for one elderly Greek woman.

She came walking by. Wrinkled face. White hair. Tanned. Dressed in black dress and stockings.

She stopped and talked with me. She spoke smilingly and occasionally excitedly. In Greek, of course.

I sat there smiling at her. Nodding my head in agreement on occasion.

I never spoke a word. Nor did I understand the Greek she was throwing at me.

At the end of whatever she was telling me, she gave me a big smile and walked away.

Notice how well I speak Greek!

Yesterday, I walked. Once more to the other side of the bay. About 2 miles. My gait and wind are much better. I was moving along.

I lunched at an outdoor cafe overlooking the harbor. A spectacular view. All views are spectacular here in the Greek isles.

I ate at Demetrius’ again last night. Why not. The food is outstanding.

Demetrius’ place is nothing appearance wise. An old old small building with a beat up awning outside. Maybe a dozen small tables.

The place is packed every evening by 9.

Last night, I had ceci peas. Soft. Covered in a tomato/oil sauce. With De Vito type bread on the side to clean the plate.

My entre was a chunk of lamb and boiled potatoes covered in a similar sauce as the ceci peas. I was told the lamb was local. I suspect the poor animal had been killed within 24 hours of it showing up on the plate before me.

The lamb melted in my mouth.

I showed up for dinner at 9. Finished at 11. The Greeks eat slowly.
Then to bed.

Tonight is my last in Amorgos. I will have been here a week. I leave tomorrow for 2 days in Athens. I am returning to Athens to do some things I did not when last I was there 3 weeks ago.

I shall miss Amorgos.

Permit me to share some random observations with you about this island.

I suggested this past week that Amorgos probably had 2,000 residents. I was close. 1,859. On an island more than 50 miles long.

Amorgos is as it was 200 years ago. Perhaps even before.

The houses are concrete. All white. Each more than 200 years old. High ceilings. Irregular walls.

The people are 80 to 100 years ago. Throwbacks from another time. Simple people. Good people.

There are few cars on Amorgos. Two means of transportation exist. Your feet and three wheeled bicycles. Three wheelers all over the place with big baskets on the back.

The men generally 50 plus. Many 70 plus. Paunchy. White haired. Dress in black. The women the same. For whatever reason, the women’s faces are especially wrinkled.

The reason both sexes dress in black is that it supposedly is cooler than wearing a lighter color.

Honesty prevails! Eleni and I discovered each other when first I arrived. I had one big bag. She insisted on rolling it along. Not far. She stopped in front of a building. Note we are standing on the harbor front. Busiest place on the island. She told me to follow her. But she left my bag alone. What about my bag? Don’t worry, she said. No one will steal it.

Her husband drives a three wheel bike. He parks it outside at night on the concrete walkway in front of this building. A public thoroughfare. No lock. Any one could ride it away. No one does.

My apartment sits on the bay of Amorgos. I see the boats come in and go out. Not that many. There are no big boats. Some evenings, 2-3 big sailboats. People put in for the night. Otherwise, the boats moored or otherwise tied up in the water are small.

Really small.

The predominant vessel is a row boat. Yes, these fisherman go out into the sea to catch their ware in row boats. If you think about it, it is not so strange. In Hemingway’s Old Man and the Sea, the fisherman was out on the ocean in a row boat the whole story.

There are some ancient type boats, also. A couple of feet longer than a row boat. A rudder in the back.

The boats are evidence of my representation that Amorgos is significantly behind the times.

Few tourists. The island is off the beaten track. Only two boats a week. I think Amorgos is absolutely fantastic! And cheap! Everything costs nothing. A person could easily live here on a Social Security check. And still have money left over!

The tourists are from all over the world. They all come for the same reasons. Peace, solitude and the cheap cost.

The locals are a happy group. Difficult to know at first. They are wary of strangers. But in less than a week, I have become a welcomed guest on their island.

There are young people. However, not that many. The proof of the pudding. There is only one disco on the island. The younger people probably leave Amorgos for bigger and better things when they come of age. I hope some of them return in due course. Everything they will be looking for in later life is already here.

Internet and wi fi service comes and goes. Every restaurant and hotel claims they have it. Impossible to find! You become adjusted. Take it in stride. Eventually it returns.

Fresh fruit a delight! An example is a gift Eleni’s husband gave me. He has a garden next to my building. It runs three stories up a little hill. Everything runs upward on Amorgos. He has an apricot tree. One day, he brought me a bowl full of apricots. They were small and ripe. Delicious. Made my mouth water.

As else where in Greece, clothes lines everywhere. Front porches, sides of buildings, where ever. Even I have had a clothesline this past week. At the far end of my terrace. For my sole use. I have used it.

I leave tomorrow at 6 in the morning. I have no choice. The two boats a week in and out both leave at 6. It is a 9 hour trip to Athens. Going to be fun. Not really. However, I am going business class and am told it will make the trip considerably easier.

Due to the time constraints tomorrow, I may not be able to do the blog. We shall see.

I have experienced four Greek places this trip. A brief evaluation is in order.

Athens I liked. It is a big city like New York. Excitement everywhere. The reason I am returning for two days more.

The best viewwise was Santorini. Spectacular. I sat with God. The food was not that good, however. Santorini is in transit. It is going from a small unknown island to a major tourist attraction. It is closer to being a major tourist attraction.

Mykonos I did not like at all. It is a tourist trap. It sells yesterday to people who want that life style. I have no desire to return to Mykonos.

Overall, Amorgos is the winner. The view is good. Plus the island has a great package otherwise. Quiet. Solitude. Good food. Nice people. The opportunity to travel at your own pace.

That’s it. The next time you hear from me will be from Athens.

Enjoy your day!

DAY 14

I do this blog each morning from an internet store. On the way back to my cave yesterday morning, I had a stimulating experience. No, not one involving a lady. I heard music. The Three Tenors. Bellowing out from an art gallery store front. The name of the art gallery: Opera Art Gallery.

I went in. The artist/owner was doing his morning clean up. He spoke no English, I no Greek. However we still communicated. He had a bucket of water bottles sitting in ice. He offered me one and a comfortable chair. I sat and listened as he worked. I looked at his work. Top shelf. Oils of the Santinori landscape. Unfortunately, my art buying years are behind me or I would have purchased one.

One of my Greek coffeee drinking friends corrected me yesterday. I have some of them reading my blog every day. Even those who did not know what a blog was.

He said I was incoorect in how I portrayed the Greek women who dress all in black. I stated they were most likely widows. They can be, he told me, but not necessarily so.

Greek women as they age have the option of deciding when to go to all black attire. It is a distiction. a recognition. She has reached a particular state in life entitling her to additional respect.

Correction made.

I drove to another beach yesterday. Karami Beach. Again, the other side of the island. Again, I got lost as I did the day before. Eventually by merely fololowing instinct, I found it.

The drive was not without its rewards. There is so much to see on Santorini.

I am living in a cave. A remodeled rehabilitated one. Probably since the volcano oif 3,500 years ago, it was merely a hole in the cliff wall. Now a beautiful apartment.

I saw many caves on the drive. Old fashioned real ones. Holes in the face of cliffs and rocks. One to three at a time. Large openings. A person could walk in. All appeared deep and dark.

There is a No Name restaurant in Karami. Just like No Name Pub in the Keys. A steak house. I smiled as I drove by.

I reached Kamari Beach. Big! Long!

Kamari Beach is located on the north shore of the island. The water from the north is rough and cold. It was both.

Black sand. Soft and rocky at the same time. So soft your feet sink in six inches with every step. The water black also. From the lava sitting at the bottom for thousands of years.

I rented a chair and umbrella. Chairs and umbrellas in Europe are all in a straight line.

I looked to my left. I looked to my right. I looked in front of me. I looked behind me. No topless or otherweise bare women. The place was a family beach.

I have come to the conclusion that nude beaches are a tourist deception so people will travel to the beaches.

Nature itself was eye opening and lovely enough. To my left was a huge cliff. Maybe 1,500 feet high. Young men were diving from its rocks. Thirty to fifty feet up. To the oohs and ahhs of the young ladies below.

About a half hour after I arrived, a woman took the beach chair and umbrella next to me. About five feet away. 50ish and attractive. She immediately removed her top. Success! My quest had been rewarded.

As she lay there, she knew I was sneaking an occasional peek.

I went to get up off my lounge to swim. I fell. Like a first class ass! Tumbled over. Me and the lounge.

My topless neighbor came running over to help. What happened? Are you hurt? Just old age, I told her. I could not get up. Could not get my balance. She helped. Said take my elbow. We locked elbows together and she lifted me. With her boobs slapping me in the face! I had succeeded beyond my wildest dreams!

We became friends. Talked most of the afternoon. Lunched together at a beach bar. She is the owner of a ladies dress shop in nearby Messeria.
She agreed with me that Greek women’s apparel was outstanding.

We shared a grilled calamari. Note grilled as opposed to fried. It was about ten inches long and two wide. Four more inches of small tentacles at one end. Rubbed in olive oil. Absolutely delicious! Tender. Literally melted in your mouth. Unusual for a large squid tentacle.

Lunch was the end of my experience with the one bare breasted woman seen by me in Santorini. Sadly. she had other plans for the evening. I have neither cell phone nor whatever so we could communicate. I gave her my email and told her to contact me if she would enjoy dinner some evening. I had one condition, however. She had to drive to Oia to me. No way could I or would I drive those narrow winding raods in the evening.

The proviso may be a killer. It’s a one hour drive. Each way. No one, including me, is worth that effort.

Dinner last night at a small taverna in Oia. A light meal. Some cheese, wine leaves and black olives. All buried in olive oil. Followd by an early bed time. The sun had knocked me out.

A common sight are clothes hanging outside on a clothes line. There are no dryers on Santorini. The sun and wind do it. You can see clothes hanging everywhere.

Santorini is much like Key West in many respects. There may be two lovely renovated buildings and then a dispidated one. Two buildingsd from where I am living is one of those buildings awaiting purchase and repair some day. The inhabitants hang their washed clothes each day on two clothes lines a mere fifty feet from my eyes and every one elses. On the drive to Kamari Beach along the north shore, I saw many lovely homes. Large. Beautiful grounds. Walled properties. And sitting on the front porch clotheslines of wash.

There is no OSHA on Santorini. Workers work at their risk. A couple of buildings away from my cave on the other side of the wash is a building under repair. Two workmen. It will take 2-3 years to complete the renovations. The scaffolding wood and leaning. No hard hats or googles. One wearing sneaks, the other sandals.

Fari is the capital of Santorini. I can see it from where I sit on my terrace. It has the only harbor/docking area on Santorini. Four cruise ships a day come in and drop passengers off to tour Santorini for the day. Just as in Key West.

With one significant differnce. The cruise ships do not tie up to a dock or the island itself. They are out in the water and boat the passengers in and back. Called transboarding here. Transporting in Key West.

The bottom line. Why should Key West spend millions of dollars for a study and then enlarging of its harbor so the cruise ships can tie up? As I understand, most European ports motor the passengers in and out. Why shouyld Key West be any different? Especially for the type of one day vistors the cruise ships bring in. I call them polyesters. They buy only tee shirts and beer. Do not eat in our restaurants. Lets use some of those millions to attract a better quality boat passenger who might spend at a dress shop and eat at our terrific restaurants.

Santorini has no tee shirt shops as such. Tee shirts are sold but as part of an overall offering of shorts, belts, hats, bags, jewelry and the like.

My plan for today was to get a fish pedicure.

About three months ago, I read that there was a new way of obtaining pedicures. Place your feet in a pool of water and have little fish suck off the dead skin on one’s feet. The process excited me. I love pedicures. Santorini has a place that specializes in the fish ones. I stopped in last night to see. A large beautiful room. Lovely chairs. Transparent buckets loaded with tiny fish.

I figured I would get a fish manicure today. Before starting today’s blog, I googled fish pedicure. Glad I did! Procedure not healthy. Banned in California and Florida. Infections can result. Are resulting. Even a strep type infection.

Tomorrow a definite, however. I climb the volcano and look into its mouth!

When I arrived, I expected to stay on Santorini only a few days. However I like it so, I have overstayed several days. Time to move on. Sadly. More to discover. Mykinos tuesday!

Enjoy your day!