Sorrento > Corfu
I arrived in Greece, more specifically Corfu, kinda drunk…not going to lie. Ellie or Rachel was still having trouble with their sleeping bag, so my first memory was looking around the dock and seeing Stuart using his brut strength to shove the damn bag into its proper “bag.” Looking around, it was sunset and pretty beautiful. I was finally in the place that Zac had said was his favorite on the trip, changing his answer to, “I guess Florence is nice too,” only after I told him I was stopping in Rome. Zac threw a bit of a fit on the dock because some dock man told him the bus (to take us to Corfu Village) could not, for the first time, drive onto the dock. We had to cram into a bus, just to drive 300 yards to OUR bus. The whole thing would have been a royal pain, if “A” hadn’t flipped out on the bus driver, “DON’T TOUCH ME!,” which lead all of us to laugh to ourselves quietly/loudly, as we were all pretty sloushed. On the bus, we met Dani, who would be one of the reps at Corfu. She was awesome telling us about how Greek people will sometimes not open their shops until around 10 or 11, taking a siesta at 2ish and if it was a nice day, may not come back at all…apparently all of Greece runs on the “ish,” timeframe. She, by far, had the best personality, still maintaining a little bit of professionalism, out of any of the reps. Super cool. We got to Corfu village, and the dream kept on coming when the guy there said he would take our bags ALMOST all the way up to our rooms… the place was so beautiful. It was hilly, which we would have usually minded because we had to walk up and down it, but gorgeous. I was rooming with Rachel and Ellie. We had a great room with a view of the ocean. HEAVEN! We got out bags to our rooms and ran down to the POOL (which we did not have to pay for, like we did in Florence). This place had a “chip,” system in which we purchase chips with money and use it at the pool café/bar. 50 € please! I had something to eat, wasn’t what I ordered, because they had run out of it, I think it was a chicken sandwich, but still was good. This was one of the places I had reverted back into my 20-year-old self and started ordering “sex on the beaches.” The red wine was rubbish, so it looks like mixed drinks and Smirnoff ices from here on out… and Ouzo shots, obviously. I asked Zac for a back massage, and surprising got one…looks like Zac was, “letting his hair down,” per say. We all got into discussions about politics and religion and, as usual, Zac told us, this was not a usual Contiki conversation. I think he appreciated it though. I went to bed without getting too crazy, because tomorrow, dear friends, was GEORGESBOAT DAY.
3 flights of stairs and you are at our digs!
HAPPY GEORGES BOAT DAY!!!!! I woke up with pep in my step. The thing EVERYONE had talked about since I had gotten on the trip. I got up, took a quick shower, and went down to breakfast with Ellie and Rachel. “Happy George’s Boat Day!” I proclaimed to everyone! Janelle was so on board with this…love that girl. We had a quick breakfast, used the free Wi-Fi for a minute in the lobby, and then got on the bus to take us to the marina. On the way there, Zac gave us the heads up that if you wanted to drive the boat, you got an uncomfortable massage from George. Also, that he was a bit crude and that you could get cheap drinks there…. Um a free massage, cheap drinks and I could get a tan…I was alllllll good with this! We were all a bit timid on the boat as we set sail…. George gave us a little history on the island, which I could understand maybe half of it because of his accent. We would be making 3 stops today…the first at the water sports park, the second at a swimming place, and the third at “hanky panky,” island, where clothing is optional. We would be fed at each stop, but we were not allowed to drink until after the sports complex. I knew I wanted to conquer my fear of parasailing this trip, and Emma was just the girl to do it with. She had, somehow, calmed my stomach down when I was ready to spew on the bus, and I knew she would be my saving grace. Parasailing was incredible…. It was fun to talk with Emma at the top of Greece…she also held my hand when I was freaking out when we were getting dunked. In Clearwater Beach, FL when they do this, there is a chance that you will hit a bull, hammerhead or any other type of ferocious shark in the head, which is not on my agenda. I had always WANTED to parasail, but this made it quite difficult to swallow…anyways, back to Corfu. I got off the parasailing, and jumped into the crystal clear, carribbean-esque water. George threw beach balls in the water and instructed us to “play with his balls.” I did. I then decided, before I ate, I wanted to ride the “couch,” aka an inflatable raft, much like a tube, that you could sit on like a ….surprise…couch. Since Zac was a tour manager, he got to ride with us fo free. It was sooooooo much fun! He was laughing the whole time, I think because I was screaming bloody murder, but it was all fun. He boop, BO0P booped out of the couch at one point, which was funny, till I realized how it might have hurt him. We headed back to the boat for George’s famous Tzatziki sauce (which at the time I didn’t like), Greek fries and other Greek food. I could have eaten the TZATZIKI SAUCE WITH A SPOON, it was so good. Now, George had opened up his, “bar.” I drank wine out of a bag all day. He also had some sexy Greek boys working on his boat, which were both 17 years old. Holy…. The shirts on Georges boat were also worth mentioning…. The ones for sale were so naughty and amazing….I bought 2. Wish I had bought them for everyone I knew. The whole crew drank the whole way to the swimming spot, and I think around that time we had learned that Rachel’s sister was in labor. She was crying and I was congratulating her and making everyone recognize over the microphone. Ellie and I had become buddies with the boys on board, Marcos and the one with the eyes, I can’t remember his name now. We were now, all, a little drunk and after I had gotten the “uncomfortable,” but not too uncomfortable massage from George (lets face facts. I will take a free massage from a gypsy if it is offered…I love massages) to drive the boat, I headed us to the, “ hanky panky,” island. The girls (well the drunk/fun girls) jumped off the boat to head over….Rachel lost her sunglasses on the way and the “eyes,” boys retrieved them in ONE 12 foot dive. He was truly a lifesaver, for Rachel. This inspired us all to get naked in the Ionian Sea. At one point, George (on our trip, not the owner of a boat) swam out, thinking he would scare us or makes us uncomfortable to be naked in front of but I think he realized how much we thought of him as a brother, as opposed to a boy, and he swam back. When I got back on the boat, I was less than sober and kept taking the wheel at any chance I got. We got back home and I ventured up to the computers to make the arrangements for the rest of my stay. 5 more days in Rome after I had learned of the departure time of my beloved’s, Ellie and Zac, from Corfu to England. I was all set and could let MY HAIR DOWN. I had my first Ouzo shot with Steph…it burned but felt so good!! I could get used to these shots FO SHO! I got one more back massage from Zac on his, “free night,” (my 4th massage for the day including 2 from George, 1 from Marcos & now this one) and we somehow convinced him to drive us around and be our personal guide on his day off. I somehow made it back to my room and got some much needed sleep.
Skinny dipping at Hanky Panky island!
“Good morning, friend,” was how we decided to awake Zac the next morning. He had answered the phone abruptly and it was obvious he had been sleeping/we had scared the daylights out of him. We checked to make sure he was still in for the driving adventure he had promised the night before and luckily he was! Ellie and I ran downstairs to get all the information for the rental and decided on a nice little 5 seater with A/C. We booked the car for 12:00 pm…ish and somehow it ended up coming around 10:00 am…ish. I was in the shower when the car arrived. My first day in a while I thought I had time to look halfway decent was blown to pieces. Ellie, Rachel, Zoe, Zac and I were off on our Corfu-ian adventure! Since I had been having some spells of motion sickness, I got to sit up front and play co-pilot. I am so happy none of the girls decided this would be a good idea for US to try and drive, because the roads are less than tiny and everyone seems to drive with their foot pushed down on the gas…plus the fact everything was in legit Greek letters (I don’t know why I never thought when I was in a sorority and we all referred to ourselves as, “Greeks,” that the land of Greece didn’t actually use these letters). Zac took us into town to his favorite Gyros café for lunch. The views on the top of the hill we parked at were incredible. The water looked like it had been painted with the most beautiful blues and turquoise hues that exist. Before going on, I must say that Greek people are some of the most friendly and warm people I have ever met. They are like Italians with a little more filter. Not meant to be offensive to Italians J. We found George in town and he was looking for some medicine for his thumb, which he had jammed/hurt while playing football at the campsite in Florence. He joined us for lunch at Micmac’s, also known as the best Greek food I have ever had. We got into discussions about the funny stories of the trip, including one that had happened earlier that day when we found out that “A,” had rented a car and gone out by herself.. Lord help us! We went to a baklava place around the corner (I don’t know the name, but Zac referred to it as Rosie’s) with delish desserts. After Rosie’s daughter gave us a run down of the options, all of them glistening with delight, the girls decided to split an orange something and a chocolate bigger something. I was super full from lunch, so tried a bit of each and left it alone. Zoe, who just absolutely cannot leave anything on a plate, ate until she was nearly sick…which was hilarious because it happened more than once on the Contiki trip. A lot of people had dogs and/or puppies, so I slowed up the group and almost got lost, playing with all the Greek animals. We ran into a few other Contikians before heading back to the car and going over to PaleokastritsaBeach. I entertained all with my road rage, even as a co-pilot. We parked and walked down to the beach, only stopping at a little beach store at the top of the hill to pick up a towel and snorkel mask for me J We walked down a flight of stairs and were surrounded by bougainvillea flowers and a view that people put on vision boards, in hope to see in person one day. We went into the bathrooms to change, which were in the bottom of a hotel, with a pool, right on the beach. There was also a tiki bar, but I was SO full, I didn’t even drink anything. We got chairs and an umbrella (for Ellie & Zac, the fair skinned English babies). I wanted to immediately go into the water to test out the water and my new mask. This beach was sandy with a rocky bottom in the water. Big rocks, none of that peddle stuff like in Nice. I’m sure we were a show for the other people on the beach, because I know I slipped a few times and looked foolish. The water was salty and cold, but felt so nice on a seemingly hot, sunny day. This day was perfection so far. We laid out and tried out the pool and before we knew it, it was time to head back to the hotel and get ready for dinner and the TOGA PARTY! The dinner was a gyros type thing at the pool, and the other Contiki group was there now too, so needless to say, it was a big party. We were given a tutorial on how to tie our togas with the bed sheets they provided. I could hardly wait! We had heard that the store next door sold cheap alcohol so we threw in money to get a bottle of vodka and a few mixers. By the time I was out of the shower and my hair was dry, there was alcohol in my hand. We all got dolled up and somehow became the epicenter for the preparty…being we were “technically,” supposed to have outside alcohol in our room, I was just hoping Zac wouldn’t have to get all “tour manager,” on us and we be punished. The years in the sorority had definitely taught me it isn’t nice to be a dick to your buddies that are in authoritative positions. Plus getting in trouble is embarrassing. Zoe, Kate & Emma came down and they had found flowers and plants outside that they put in their hair…geniuses. I felt really classy roaming around the plant beds looking for weeds to stick in my hair, but it sure did look fancy when it was in (That’s what she said). We headed down to the party a little after dusk (which was probably around 9 or 10, the sun is out for so damn long there) and shit got cray REALLY QUICK. There was a 3rd Contiki group that was there from the “hotel” crew that had decided to “slum,” it for the evening at our place. This place was so amazing, I don’t know how any hotel could beat it, honestly. I ran into the guy I had ditched in Florence, who immediately called me out on it and the fact that I had told him I was not going to Corfu. He seemed almost angry…I guess I have that effect on men J Well we were all dancing inside and the rest of the crew was chilling outside. I must say, we, again, were obsessed with each other and only danced with the other trips when we were drunk. Needy ContikiLtoG. Zamir had the GREAT/Horrible idea to just pee outside if we needed to go, so we didn’t have to wait in a line. I had gone through college where at any one of our watering holes, I had done this (I have always been way classy), so anytime I needed to go to the bathroom, that is where I did it. I think one of the times it may have even been in front of people, but I try to not think about that. I had about 9 ouzo shots. The guys from George’s boat came to the party and one of the girlies on the trip, who shall not be named, took him to the beach, beach. The rest of the night was a blur of loud music, clear liquid shots and togas. I regained consciousness only when I was outside with Ellie and she was feeling under the weather, to say the least. When she had to be carried up the hill by Dionne, I called it a night.
The next morning, I woke up in not my bed and immediately thought, “oh fuck.” I had my bathing suit bottoms on and concluded there was no sex, so I quickly got out of bed and RAN back to my room, with my bed sheet all wrapped around me and weeds sticking out of my hair. Shacker status. The door was locked and a half dead Ellie let me in. She was joking about the night before, which she oddly remembered most of. I told her my night and made her promise to not say a word. Rachel was not there, and when we found her, she was in Stuart, Georges and Zamirs room. She was in one bed, Zoe was in another with Zamir's long-sleeved shirt on and Zamir was in his bed…the other boys were not there. Classic. I decided against breakfast, I wasn’t ready for the stories from the night before. I stayed in bed till Rachel came home and we all went down to the pool. Apparently I did pee in front of people, and it was a crowd. Always making the parents proud. After hearing some of the stories of night, my favorite being the beach beach one, a group of us decided to walk across the street to get some food. It was right on the water over looking the sea. Great, inexpensive food and funny stories. We saw Stuart and George there and they almost didn’t make eye contact with us. They were obviously hurting from the night before too and left the restaurant to walk together on the beach. Such a bromance. We ate and went back to the pool. I had fun watching everyone play marco polo, but opted not to play. I stayed on a raft and floated around in the perfect sunny weather. The owner of the accommodations whole family came over, including his daughter and her children, Stephani(6ish)and Demetri (2ish). I died for them. They were so precious. This also gave me the opportunity to speak with Dani, who was hanging with the kids too. She talked to me about how she went about deciding to work for Contiki and how much she loved it while the kids colored each other with markers, which was awesome. The mother, at one point, mentioned in the conversation that she would love to have me nanny for the kids and teach them English. WHY DIDN’T I TAKE HER UP ON THAT OFFER…IIDDDDDDIIOOOOTTTTTTT!!! After playing with the kids for about 2 hours, I went up to use the Wi-Fi in the lobby and call Diego, to let him know about the change in plans. He was so nice and supportive and told me he hopes I keep calling him to change my travel plans! Lovely. Ellie and I ran down to the store to get some waters and a few trinkets. I got a shot glass, 3 bottles of ouzo, water, crackers and some redbull. We then headed upstairs to get ready for out Greek dinner and dancing exhibition. The place greeted us with shots of ouzo. The place was very nice and the woman who ran it with her husband was American (I think). We had great seats right next to the dance floor. They brought out a plate of feta cheese and a few other things, along with bread and white wine. I think my body had just had enough of cheese, bread and wine, because I felt super sick almost the entire night, and almost vomited a few times. Luckily, I still got to see most of the dances, but did not eat much. There was even a fire dance, which was very cool to see. Ellie was my saving grace and gave me one of her prescribed stomach pills, which made me feel 1000% better, just in time for dancing. I paired up with Michelle to do this game where a couple keeps a potato in between their foreheads and are asked to do many things while not touching the potato or dropping it, such as standing on one leg. We weeded out the competition and were one of four couples left. The MC told us to wrap our legs around the other person, which of course Michelle and I did not understand and we dropped the potato. Nadia and Ben ended up winning and it was after she was literally on the ground with him. LtoG baby! We danced a “train like,” dance and it was super fun. We headed back home and after I packed everything up, I went right to bed. We would be leaving this oasis in the morning.
Corfu > Athens
The next morning we were up to see the sunrise. We all took showers and pictures of our room and took all of our stuff downstairs to check out and eat breakfast (which I didn’t eat because it was a bus day). We piled everything into the new fancy coach that was minus one Rui L. This bus was very nice though! We headed off to Athens…
αντίο Corfu. γεια Athens!