Breakfast is simple.
Whatever time I roll out of bed, I throw on a tee shirt and pair of shorts. Then up fifty tortious steps. There is a small bakery a few feet away. All goods baked fresh a few hours earlier in the dead of night.
A little old lady runs the place. Works it. Dressed all in black. A widow, I assume. White hair.
I try to engage her in conversation. She ignores me.
Each morning, I purchase three different baked goods and a cup of coffee. All kinds of baked goods for sale. I generally get some crispy thing covering fruit, one with spinach and finally a small loaf of olive oil bread. I pick at the three for breakfast while sitting on my little terrace outside my cave. Overlooking the volacano, sea and boats. What I do not finish, which is most of it, I leave wrapped in the frige. During the day, I pick at the remnants.
Being on a small island half way around the world can make you feel cut off from the rest of the world. Especially when the computer is down. I use a computer at an internet store. Yesterday morning, every attempt came up labeled disconnected from the internet. I returned at 5 in the afternoon to do the blog yesterday.
I took the free time the disconnected internet gave me to walk. Oia is Greek Orthodox. Tons of Greek Orthodox Churches and shrines. People all over the place praying and bowing.
I visited one of the Greek Orthox Churches yesterday. It sets in the middle of the marble walkway behind my cave accomodations. About a mile down the way. In front is a huge plaza. Then an imposing white church.
I had never been in a Greek Orthodox Church before.
Dark when you first enter. The sun and eyes. I sat till I could see clearly. Beautiful! The only word to describe what I saw. Riches, also. Chandeliers of gold and silver. Wall plaques and figurines of gold and silver. Be clear. Not brass. Not a thin covering. For real gold and silver. A shining brilliance! The Greeks do not cheat their God as they honor Him.
Most visitors were Greeks coming to pay homage rather than curious visitors. Some locals, some foreigners.
They all burn candles. Or what I assume are candles. They look like bloated incense sticks. Light at the top. When lite, were placed with others in a stand. Then the supplicant would bow, cross his or her self several times and then bow again. I hope I have the sequence correct.
I have found over the years in my infrequnet visits to religious places unknown to me, that there is a peace and tranquility in spending some time in them. I felt it yesterday. I recalled a simiar feeling thirty some odd years ago at a Muslim museum in New York City. I sat in a small room with several Buddahs. I did not want to leave.
You will recall last year my blood pressure problem. Took a whole year to get it under control. My ankles were constantly swollen with fluid. I was popping water pills daily.
My ankles were big yesterday. First time in a couple of months. I carry water pills and potassium pills with me to use if necessary. My heart doctor said lay flat for three hours after taking the pills to get the best effect. I did. I lay for three hours in the cool of my cave on the bed. I would have done it outside down the steps by the pool on a chaise lounge. However, I needed to be near an appropriate facility when the need to expell fluid arose. Ergo, the bed with the bathroom nearby.
Everything is hills in Santorini. Even walkways and roads. Up and down. Everything is steps also. Too many. For example, fifty steps down from street level to my cave. To the pool, an additional fifty steps. What goes down, must come up. The reverse has generally been true. Ho ho! These steps are not normal. No codes here. They are different widths and different heights. I find the fifty steps from my cave to the road a killer. I have to stop and sit a few minutes at the top before proceeding.
Walking is impossible to avoid. The parking lot for my rented car is 1/2 mile down the road. An example of being compelled to walk every where.
Why am I boring you with this onerous walking situation? Because it is causing my belly to go down. For real. More than half way. I can’t believe it! I have no scale to see if I have actually lost weight. Whatever, my stomach is dramatically down and my face decidedly thinner. My heart, whether stronger or weaker, I do not know.
Come walk with me in Santorini!
Ate at the Katina again last night. The restaurant sitting on a concrete shelf beneath a towering lava created mountain. The daughtrer of the owner greeted me. I was remembered. So did 4 or 5 waiters.
I sat precisely at the edge of the concrete abutment. Another inch and I would have been swimming with the fishes.
I knew exactly what I wanted. Did not need a menu. I started with hot grape leaves stuffed with rice covered with oil. Everything is covered with oil in Greece. Understandable, there are olive trees all over the place. Red snapper for my entre. The fish was grilled and delivered to me splayed with the spinal bone removed. Boiled potatoes and cooked greens. Both buried in oil. For dessert, baklava. A rich crispy cake covered with honey. A double espresso. With the meal, I enjoyed three gins and one ouzo.
When the bill arrived, I was comped certain items as occurred with my previous visit. The waiter told me the 3 gins, 1 ouzo, the grape leaf appetizer, the espresso, and the baklava…..were on the house! This entire glorious meal cost me all of 24 euros. $34 American money.
Burbing is in vogue and socially acceptable in Greece. At the end of my meal, I inadvetntly let out a big one. The waiter looked me, beamed and said…..good! A Greek couple sitting at the table next to me did likewise.
Another beach day in the making. Today it is Kamari Beach. I have inquired and been assured no hills to climb. Park the car and walk directly onto a flat sandy beach.
Kamari is supposed to be a tourist place. Many restaurants and bars. I may stay for dinner.
I have also been assured there will be topless and totally naked woman. We shall see. No, I shall see.
Enjoy your day!