Day 42 – 49
Very chilled, we visited the Valley of the Butterflies, but as we were out of season only sore 4 butterflies, it was still worth it the valley was cool and very pretty.
Garys b’day was on the 17th, we had agreed before leaving the UK that we wouldn’t buy each other cards or pressies, however it felt very strange waking up on his birthday and not being able to give him a gift to unwrap. We spent the day in old Rhodes Town, on the way to Rhodes Gary decided to test out his 51 year old legs and we chased and over took two greeks on road bikes. We had a lovely day in Rhodes, we explored the archeological museum, sat on the beach and had a meal out in the evening.
Spent the next two days chilling by the pool/beach trying to blend in the tan lines. Gary (the restless pup) cycled up a hill or two to get rid of some of his surplus energy. We spent this time doing research for the next stage of our trip, we have downloaded books for the kindle and looked at maps to plan the route through Turkey. I have downloaded lots of podcasts to amuse me on my bike and Gary has been in touch with some tour operators in India to arrange access to Bhutan.
We contacted several volunteer groups in Nepal to see if we could offer our services for a couple of weeks but it would appear this is only possible if we pay (a considerable sum) for the pleasure.
We got to know the family who owned the hotel we were staying in quite well and in the evenings we spent time learning a bit more about Greece and its economy and history. The tourist season in Greece is very short and many of the hotels only open between May and October. The Sunday Hotel (where we stayed) opens all year round and is used by pregnant women and their families from the islands as the hospital is based on the main land. It is also used by people working on the ships and ferries. The staff were really helpful and friendly and sent us a really lovely email thanking us for our custom and expressing an interest to follow us on our travels. Although it would not be for us it was easy to see why the danish couple we met returned 2 or 3 times a year.
Day 49 – 56
Rhodes to Lindos
The cycle ride to Rhodes was hilly and we had a head wind most of the way. As we approached Lindos we were surprised (Gary; hardly a surprise as Chris is the bridegroom of the wedding we travelled across Europe to see, lucky as it was to meet him like this) to bump into Chris and his family on a roundabout, he had hired a car for the day and we happened to be crossing the roundabout as he was turning right.
We arrived at Nazarene Residency before 12 and fortunately bumped into one of the villa plus representatives who showed us to our villa. The villa was perfect, rooms were big and airy, swimming pool was heated and we had table tennis and a pool table to amuse the little and big kids.
We quickly unpacked and cycled up a steep hill to Pefki where Gary’s mum and Richard were staying. They were not expecting to see us so were pleasantly surprised. We caught them laughing about an incident that had happened earlier in the day. Tracy (Gary’s sister) had gone to find Judy and Richard, she had never been to their hotel before but was fairly sure she knew which hotel it was. On arrival at the hotel she asked for Mr and Mrs Lloyds room number and was given directions to the room. Once she reached the room, she knocked on the door, but received no answer, she thought her mum might still be in bed so rang her. As it happened Judy was still in bed and informed Tracy she would get up, Tracy preceded to knock loudly and Tracy’s grandchildren called out Nanny, Nanny, but still no answer. Tracy rang her mum again and then the penny dropped, Tracy was knocking on a Mr and Mrs Lloyds hotel room, but she was in the wrong hotel!
Hayley, Shaun and Kerri and Debbie, Aimee and Matthew arrived later in the day and we had a pleasant evening.
The week flew by, we ate lots, drank far more than we should have done and had a fantastic holiday with the family. It is difficult ensuring 8 very different people get what they want from a weeks holiday but I think by and large we achieved it. Highlights include in no particular order:
the wedding, Chris and Kasha got married on the 26th May, both looked beautiful and the wedding was lovely
walking with my sister (Gary; and me!), I wish we had, made more time together alone (Gary, cheers for that)
playing volleyball in the pool
Gary; Ginette’s very reluctant kareoke session.
water sports at Lardos (I didn’t go but the others did, I had a couple of hours chilling by the pool)
family barbecue for Shaun’s and Richard’s birthdays, plus Chris and Gary all the same month – brilliant day, especially Tracy’s and mine attempt at jumping on the rubber rings (thank you Debbie for that special bit of advice)! (Gary; one of the rings has a split in the seam that was not there before, not sure which arse caused the damage though – Ginette cheeky bugger!).
The only downside was the bugs, very large crickets, millipedes and mosquitoes.
Everyone went home on the Wednesday and Gary and I stayed on for a further day in Lardos. The weather wasn’t brilliant but was warm enough for us to sunbathe in the afternoon, we even took part in some aqua aerobics.
I must have caught the sun lots, whilst we have been away, my hair is blonder than ever and several people have mistaken me for being Scandanavian, which Gary seems to like. One of the reps in the hotel even made the comment I didn’t think you were english because you are so black (she was referring to both me and Gary)