February 22, 2011

Under the Grecian Sun, Part 1

I'm going to be honest with ya'll, there is nothing new to report here. It's still snowing, it's laundry day, I had class this morning, blah, blah, blah.

So, in honor of the upcoming "Storytellers Blog Hop" I thought I would share with you a memory that is close to my heart. A trip of a lifetime, if you will. It is about my two summers spent basking in the Grecian sun. That, and I am hoping a story about hot summers will jump start warm weather here. Hey, it's worth a shot!

Here is part one of a three (maybe two, can I fit it all?) part story. I hope you enjoy a glimpse into the past (cue eerie music and Wayne and Garth frantically waving their hands into a dream sequence "dilttilido, dilttilido, dilttilido")

Grecian Adventure, Part 1:
Looking back 5 years ago, it is hard to imagine how my life turned out the way it has. That was back in the days when I knew nothing about hockey, Canada, or even how to pronounce Saskatchewan. Still kinda don't :)

There were only a few months left in my last semester as a college student. And they lazily drifted by. I had just enough credits to keep my scholarship, but all the work was already behind me. Needless to say, I had a great time really making the most out of my last year at that university. 

Talk about 'bright' futures :)
It was about this time of the year when most of the seniors started planning their trip-of-a-lifetime-before-a-lifetime-of-work extravaganza. Some planned to visit South America, others wanted something more local, maybe a summer in New York, but the majority of us kids (like it was soooo long ago, lol) wanted to see Europe. Whether we had planned to backpack and hostel or proper hotel it up, we were determined to have one last fling before the big girl world took this open opportunity and freedom away.

While others thought about how many countries they could see in a month's time, I had only one place in mind: Greece. 
Since my first semester at that liberal arts university, I had fallen in love with Classical Studies. I am sure my parents weren't too thrilled when I told them I had switched my major from Biology to Classics.  But hey, that is what they get for sending me to a hippie dippie liberal arts school :) There was something that I found so mesmerizing about Ancient Greece and Rome. Between the mythology lectures, ancient life courses, and intensive classes in Greek religion, I was engulfed by the past. And I just knew I had to see the ancient ruins in the birthplace of civilization. 

My boyfriend at the time was also planning a trip to Europe. He wanted to start his way down in Greece or Italy and work up to northern Europe; a six week trip to see it all. Perfect, I thought, I will see if we can maybe backpack together in Greece and go our separate ways from there. He shot that down as fast as I could get the idea out. Great guy or what? Blech.

So, I called my mom, obviously a little upset that this guy I had been dating for a while now would not 'let me' tag along with him. Like I was a puppy dog or something. But little did I know, that he did me a huge favor. Because of how he reacted, my mom basically told me to screw him - of course in nicer words than that - and take my own trip to Greece as a graduation present. I couldn't believe that she had suggested that! I mean, I realized that I was technically an adult at this point, but still, me, the only child, going to a foreign country...by myself! If that guy hadn't been such a douche, I would have never gotten that chance.

The planning and booking happened all so quickly. I narrowed my trip down to one week in Athens and surrounding area, and two weeks aboard a 80 foot sail boat around the Greek islands. It was a crewed trip, and had other guests on board, that way, I wouldn't be alone the entire time. It was one of the best decisions I had ever made. 

I was completely awestruck at the Acropolis, could not believe that I could actually touch the Parthenon. I spent a day out in Mycenea, wandering the ancient ruins. I knew it all, like I had been there before. I discovered the modern day quality of the acoustics at the Epidaurus Theater. I walked the Agora and the Stoa, wandering about what conversations took place here 3000 years ago. I was in heaven just wandering around the old stones.

And just when I thought it couldn't get any better, I boarded the sail boat for a trip of a lifetime. The other passengers, just 10 of us on a boat, and the crew were amazing. They made the trip great as much as the islands did. We hopped to 12 islands in two weeks time. They were big and small, loud and quiet, and all spectacular.

I could go on for days about how amazing the Cyclades are. I will never forget those islands. 

By the end of the trip, I felt that I had had enough sight seeing time before I had to start looking for jobs and working my life away. I took my experiences with me back to San Antonio and started 'normal' life up there again. I had such a great time with the the Aussie girls working the boat and the travel company director, who was Canadian, that we all stayed in touch over email that fall and winter.

Then in the spring, I received some of the best and most exciting news ever. The director wanted to know if I would like to come back to Greece and be a program director on the sail boats for May, June and July! How could I say no to such a wonderful opportunity like that?! Not everyone gets to live the island life and get paid doing so. I took the offer almost immediately and was thrilled.....except for one little thing.

Did I mention I got the job offer the same week I met the future hubs?? Talk about timing :)

Second part of my Grecian Adventure coming tomorrow. Have a great Tuesday!
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  1. OMG, I LOVE THIS POST! And also, I JUST read about Greece on another blog post and IMMEDIATELY added to my list of things to do, over at my blog. Forgive the excessive Caps, but I am excited! Wow, I am so looking forward to part 2! The other story I read is here:


  2. What a neat-o story. I especially enjoyed the 'douche' reference about your ex. I hope he stumbles on over here! Thanks DoucheyMcGee, if it weren't for you I never would've met this lovely Lindsey!

  3. I too enjoyed the "douche" reference; we all need to write douche-blogs about the ones who, thankfully, mercifully, got away, were the "dumpers" or the "dumpees".

    What would any of our lives have been like if those toxic relationships continued and developed into more...

    Lovely story; cannot wait for Part 2!!


  4. What an awesome opportunity...I've ALWAYS wanted to go to Greece. Can't wait to hear part 2!

  5. It all happens for a reason:)))

  6. I love this post! So very cool that your job was SAILING around the Greek Islands, like HELLO, how amazing is that??
    Okay so, I'm thinking that both are hubs are from booming Saskatchewan, land of PILSNER BEER & nothing much else...lucky us!!!lol!!

  7. Greece is somewhere I have yet to go, sadly...I want to see it SO BAD. One of my friends was studying there while I was studying in the Riviera, and when we got back we had a several-months-long debate about whose pictures were prettier.

    I think we just agreed to call it a tie. I can't wait for part 2!

  8. I've ALWAYS wanted to go to Greece. The sailing sounds like it was the perfect way to explore. We went to Rome a few years back and I was so amazed at the architechture I can only imagine how beautiful Greece is.

    Can't wait for part II

  9. I've always wanted to go to Greece and this makes me want to go even more! What a wonderful experience.

    I'm a new follower from Totally Tuesday Blog Hop! I'd love for you to stop by my blog:


  10. Oh wow! I love it. I'm going to go thru my Greece pics from years ago.

  11. I love this post- good for your mom to encourage you to take the world by storm! I think nothing is more empowering than adventuring on your own :)

  12. @Apfel - by far the most beautiful place I have been too! I am glad you are pumped about it :) I will have to check out that site, thanks for sharing!!
    @KY - haha, I thought about that too, but ahhh, who cares. You are too sweet...and so right!
    @Slidecutter - haha, glad you liked it too. Felt appropriate. No kidding on those that mercifully 'got away' Couldn't be here without them! Thanks Patty, you are always so sweet:)
    @Hillary - you have to put it on your list of must sees. I hope to come up with a good second part of the story now, lol
    @Mrs K - SO TRUE!!
    @Sheri - I know, I have been pretty spoiled with jobs. It was a VERY tough job, but holy cow, the view was amazing :)
    @Jackie D - ohh, I can only imagine how beautiful those pictures are too. I have heard it is gorgeous there, and in a way very Greek like.
    @An Irish - The sailing really is the only way to go! You get to see so much, and only unpack once. And less foofy than the cruise ships
    @Sam - thanks for stopping by, and awesome with a real comment. I don't get much of those from blog hops. :)
    @Tanya - It made me really nostolgic going through mine for the post. I have to go through all of them again soon!
    @Meri - I know, isn't she great. I think taking a trip by yourself is a must. It is rewarding in such a great way!!

  13. That sounds amazing! I can't wait to read the rest. I always wanted to visit Greece.

  14. The ex is definitely a loser! This is an amazing story!!

  15. @Jessi - Thanks! It is a beautiful country :)
    @Megan - haha, nice. I am not bitter any more, but did think that was a jerk move. Thanks!


Whoomp, there it is!