I’m in Greece at the moment and it’s the time of year where a storm will whip out of nowhere to banish the blue and knit a frown of dark grey clouds across the sky and my face. No botox here, love.
Unfortunately, what also happens is the electricity will decide to cack its pants and drop to the ground faster than a whore’s drawers. That’s what happened yesterday. On. Off. On. Off. On. BLOODY WELL OFF AGAIN. You get the idea.
Of course, with no electricity, there’s no internet.
It’s bad enough that my laptop is dead at the moment and I’m having to dig my glasses out for prolonged squinting at my tiny iPhone SE screen. But when the phone signal is iffy and the WiFi has gone the same quiet way as the fridge freezer – frozen silence – one has to stop twiddling ones thumbs and ‘do something less boring instead’.
So, Nicola and I sped through the rain, in her zippy red hire car down t’village and along the seafront to park within spitting distance of our taverna choice for the day; Aktaion in Stoupa.
It was a tad intimidating walking inside, past the Greeks. They were lined up, contemplating the shitey weather whilst cocooned in black puffa jackets, staring glumly through tendrils of cigarette smoke at the rain and us crazy Brits, adorned in a mere cardi for warmth.
A smile and a badly pronounced “Yassas” were returned wholeheartedly though, as we breezed in and plonked ourselves in some seats, pausing for a mere moment before ordering a hot chocolate each and resisting the temptation to add a Metaxa.
Journals and Navels
We opened our journals and dug out pens. I navel gazed for a moment before mentally shaking myself and writing out the first thing that came to mind.
I interrupted Nicola’s latest poetic musings, for a spot of laser focused coaching on the list of pros and cons for my current lifestyle that I was now staring at.
It was decided that I’d create a web presence for my house and pet sitting services and share stories of the fabulous furry creatures I’ve loved as a result. My nomad lifestyle still suits me at the moment but who knows what next year will bring!
Just as we’d moved on to chit chat about my idea for penning an erotic novel, we were interrupted by a “very twinkly man”. Nicola’s description. Though I have to admit, he was rather charming…
Unfortunately, he’d jumped to the conclusion that we were learning how to read and speak Greek, when in fact Nicola had been explaining a story arc example for the wanton hussy I’m considering conjuring up from my imagination.
He offered us several words of encouragement before Nicola interrupted his flow by complimenting him on his grasp of the English language. Thankfully it hadn’t been good enough for eavesdropping our conversation.
This proved to be an excellent means of deflecting attention from the reality of the total lack of Greek linguistics being rehearsed at our table. He went on to reveal he was employed by the Government but did not want to divulge what his job is exactly…
Intriguing! Would he have to kill us if we found out?
My imagination sparked, we smiled broadly, thanked him again for… Well I’m not sure what. And went back to brainstorming a nom de plume for my raunchy alter ego.
Up the Hill
Ideas now noted and sick of the sound of bad pop music, we decided to make an exit. Straight into the local supermarket known as Parrot shop – mainly because a very verbal parrot lives there. Yes, really. And there’s a dog who hangs out on the roof to bark randomly like an ancient smoke alarm – don’t ask me why.
Armed with wine and crisps, we ventured back up the hill to see if the internet connection had returned.
But didn’t seem to want to stick around for longer than 15 minutes, so I decided I had to succumb to ennui and lie down on the sofa.
My mind drifted and I thought about all the podcasts I’d enjoyed listening to whilst doing painting and decorating for friends earlier in the year.
Do you like listening to podcasts? I do. But as I hated trying to use the podcast app on my phone, I took the easy option and read embarrassingly trashy novels on my Kindle instead – that device has made it far too easy for covert reading in public places.
Nicola, hearing me huff and puff, suggested I try the app she uses – Overcast. And I have to say, it is brilliant. Mercifully quick to install, so easy to find podcasts I love and the episodes were fast to download too.
The electricity and internet went off again. But this time I was listening to a podcast and didn’t care at all.