Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Halkian Days (Don't tell me you don't understand that subtle and everso clever wordplay there)

According to the Oxford Dictionary, "Halcyon Days" is an expression used to describe a period of time in the past that was idyllically happy and peaceful. Well, since both her indoors and I still have work commitments as we fast approach the middle of October, we found that we had to scupper plans to visit good friends in Ira'petra, Crete, yet again and settle for a quick break of three days and two nights somewhere close by. With me having been to Halki every week during the summer season for three years on the trot, sometimes two days running during the high season, we decided that it was high time we went there simply to visit the place.

What is it that makes Halki special? Well, here are a few reasons for starters...

This is the view from the balcony of the "Marcos" Studio where we stayed. C'mon guys, can it get much better than this?

Another view from our balcony

Y'know, I don't like to sound as if I'm pulling rank or anything, but after all, one of the reasons why I can lay claim to having seen more of Greece than many non-Greeks (and a not a few Greeks probably) is the fact that I'm not as young as I used to be. I am, though still young (he hastens to add), it's just that I've been young for about five or six decades now, that's how I explain it anyway. When you've visited innumerable islands and a large part of the mainland too, you do have a good idea of what ingredients a place needs in order to qualify as the "real" Greece. Halki has all the ingredients to bake a perfect Greek sojourn. That's it in a nutshell.

So, a week or so ago we decided that we'd just up and go. After all I do have contacts over there which were going to make it easy to arrange accommodation and make for some pleasant social intercourse (steady - I did say SOCIAL, get it right!), so a couple of phone calls soon got us fixed up with a modest little studio with a view TDF (see photos above) and, after asking a friend who still does Halki as an excursion and who evidently wasn't the person to ask in the end 'cos she does it from the North of Rhodes and hence didn't seem to be up on the ferry schedules from Kamiros Skala, I remembered (pause for embarrassment to pass) that my very own "Nearby Islands" page on this very blog carries the phone number of Vasili, who captains the rather sleek Fedon...

The Fedon tied up at Kamiros Skala - ain't she a beaut?
One phone call to Vasili and we were assured that she was departing from Kamiros Skala as hoped for at 9.15am on Wednesday October 8th. We bunged some stuff into a cloth case, stuffed a holdall with the rest and set off at around 8.00am that very morning to drive over to Kamiros Skala and jump aboard.

Episode 2 will follow shortly!!!

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