Goin’ to the Country….

We’ve now had four days biking out of Athens. I’m beginning to understand why I don’t run into many Greek travelers. Why would they leave their own country? It has definitely exceeded my expectations. The countless islands, the exquisitely colored sea, mountainous topography, and orchards of olive, lemon and orange trees everywhere. Rural life with its country lanes and traditional lifestyles evokes memories of a simpler world.

Today we started to see more vineyards. Some had big fields of poles which held netting above and also smaller netting halfway down that the vines were trained to travel on. I assume the netting above were protection from birds and below to make picking easy. Other orchards we saw were more traditional.

We haven’t had anything but great food anywhere here. And friendly people. However, like everywhere, there is reality to life here. I may not tread much on that since we will only be here about eight days. It’s what’s harder to see for casual travelers like us. But bike travel does put you closer to it.

Two nights ago we could only find one hotel to choose from. We were happy to find one. In Greece it’s illegal to wild camp. The campgrounds we’ve found are still seasonly closed. It will be another week before everything opens up. The hotel that night could have opened in the 50’s and still looks and operates the same. The dining room was mostly taken up by old men drinking beer, downing ouzo, or sipping coffee. Most were chain smoking cigarettes. All were watching an old large screen TV with the volume raised so the people next door could hear. The patrons obviously were old friends. Easy conversation continued between them whenever there was a lull in the squawking TV. An older culture that reminded me so much of my home town of Grand Marais decades ago. We didn’t appreciate the smoking or the sound blaring but could recognize the importance of the meeting place this hotel marked for this older generation.

Tonight we are in a lovely seaside town called Mytkosia. Just had a simple but wonderful homemade meal of shrimp, potatoes and salad at a very small restaurant operated by an older couple. Our best meal yet. More later in another blog. My eyes want to close till tomorrow.

Lindsay heading out
Looking down at a seaside village

Bringing in the fish

Rion Antirion bridge

Biking the 3K bridge.

11 thoughts on “Goin’ to the Country….

      1. Orcas Island was awesome! Soon there will be a sweet home there (not ours…) that we can visit often! We’re home how and having up to 10″ of snow before tomorrow night and then more after that. Be VERY glad that you’re there!!!

  1. The decision of when to stop to capture a scene is often dictated by whether you will then fall behind the others and then have to put out more energy to catch up again. You miss many more than you take. I’m glad you like that one. We were all stopped.

  2. You are capturing Greece in your words so well Buck. The rural aspect of Greece has been lost, or was never there in our new world. They have been doing what you are seeing for a long time. We found that age is an appreciated & respected aspect of the human life cycle. The smoking is not a good thing but in the warmer times one can usually eat outside under the vines in a courtyard over looking that incredible aqua blue water or over looking the village square. Are you in Mytkosia or Mytikas?? Im loving your blog and its bringing back great recollections of that route.

    1. Thanks, Dermot. It was Mytikas. I appreciate your comment. I feel woefully inadequate to describe these things. We are now less than two days from the Albanian border. A new adventure. Route remains good.

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