We arrived in Vassiliki on Monday 5th June 2017, a little later than usual due to the sad death of our great friend Dave Rowlands. We had a good journey and ferry crossing, this time in the VW T6 Transporter van. After checking into Imperial Studios and saying hello to everyone there we went along to the Cosmos Hotel. We were greeted by Vassiliki, Stelios’ wife and later Stelios along with several friends who were there on Peter Hart’s course – Andy Helm, Nicola & Sarah and Nick amongst others.
Later we went back to the Cosmos to join in the welcome meal which was excellent. Good food and good company.
On Tuesday Mel went to join Peter’s course and later I went along and had lunch with them.
In the afternoon I sat on a sun bed on the beach whilst Mel was out on the water. This was the general pattern for the rest of the week! The wind was quite light on Tuesday and Wednesday but it got stronger Thursday & Friday. We went out most evenings with the group for a meal and enjoyed everybody’s company but we found the late nights put paid to running the next morning! Mel did go a couple of times and I went for a bike ride on Friday to show willing!
On Sunday 11th Peter and the rest of the group departed and we had our first meal in the apartment! The next day we went to Lefkada and I had the wax removed from my ears by an ENT doctor. Hurray, I can hear! Afterwards we went to the Bazaar shop to get some kitchen equipment and then Lidl to do a food shop. We stopped off at Dimitri’s Taverna in Geni for lunch on the way back to Vass. We had a restful day so that Mel could recover from his first week on the water.
We both ran the ‘P’ route on the Tuesday and then went for a bike ride to Agios Petros on Wednesday.
There was some good wind in the afternoons for Mel to go windsurfing. On Thursday we went to our first Pilates session at Healthy Options. After a run on the Friday morning and a good windsurf session in the afternoon, we went to the Cosmos for a meal (fish night) which was very good (Mel had a burger, however!)
On Sunday we went for another bike ride, this time to Sivros where we stopped for a frappe and met Jean who had walked up. We came back via the monastery road.
We met a family from Ireland at the Cosmos this week who we had first met back in 2006 when the boys were only 6 and 8 – Charlie & Jack and their parents David & Mary. They remembered Mel taking pictures of the boys when they were windsurfing and it was really good to meet to them again.
It was a good week for wind and Mel enjoyed windsurfing on four of the days and resting on the others. We did some more running and Pilates and on the Saturday we went to the village of Exanthia and set off on a walk which Mike Edmonds had suggested. The path was rather overgrown and we struggled to get through the undergrowth, scratching our legs and arms in the process. When we got near to the road, we saw a pick up truck with a couple in who stopped and asked us if we wanted a lift back to Exanthia (no English language involved!) We gladly accepted and climbed into the back of the truck and sat on the bags of plant cuttings.
They took us all the way back to the village and right up to the restaurant (H Rachi) where we had a frappe. Whilst we sat at the restaurant we watched some paragliders jump off the cliff and fly down to Kathisma beach.
We went to the Cosmos Hotel for lunch on the way back and then Mel went out for a good windsurfing session on the water. We had a drink with David & Mary, Jack & Charlie afterwards and then we went to Bazanaki’s restaurant for a meal in the evening. We were made to feel very welcome by Chrissa and had a lovely meal whilst looking out at the beautiful view of Vassiliki Bay.
On Sunday I cycled and Mel ran to Sivros, coming back via the monastery road. There was no wind and we sadly had to say goodbye to David & Mary but have arranged to meet them at their place in Donegal in September.
The following week new people arrived at the Cosmos including Paula and Simon who we have met in previous years but also bumped into in Rhosneigr in Anglesey last October. They happen to live in North Wales about 7 miles away from where we are hoping to buy a bungalow. It’s a small world!
On the Wednesday evening we drove to Hortata to go to the T’Aloni restaurant for a meal. The views from the restaurant are amazing and you can watch the sunset over the west side of the island.
We had a lovely meal which was a bit different from the usual menu you get at most Greek restaurants. We had a lentil salad and feta cheese in filo pastry and honey for starters; Mel had lamb cooked in the oven with cherry tomatoes and potatoes and I had Sofrito (slices of beef in garlic) for our mains. For desert we had a melon ‘soup’ with yogurt presented over a bowl of dry ice! Very different!