This day was beyond words or descriptions, utterly heavenly and blessed. But before I get to the good part first I must describe the downside of the day. It most definitely was the drive. Normally I would LOVE driving thru the quaint beautiful little mountain and seaside villages and seeing all the beautiful green lush landscape, waterfalls, and amazing vistas. However, all this bliss was interrupted by children’s car ride shenanigans. Dimitra spent a majority of the ride in ignore mode with both hands covering her ears. Dafni flipped back and forth between yelling at the little ones and begging us to sit in the front. Dalia, felt that she was being perfect and it was aaaaaallllllll Dino who was making the noise and arguments. Dino said contrary to my comment that it takes two, “It does NOT take 2 to fight, it only takes one, because one person can kick, bite and scratch themselves” then Dalia says, “yeah that is only when they have an evil spirit” WHAT! Where did these kids get all this? John pulled the car over at least 7 times, holding his forehead with ALL ten digits at once. I know he is frustrated when this happens. So I told them, “lets play the alphabet game”. We looked outside the car and had to find something that started with A. We must be in jet lag because I think it took us a full 15 minutes to think of AUTOMOBILE. So when we get to N, and got stuck, Dino says, “N is for NO sign of N’s”. Finally the game ended at X, when Dalia and Dino erupted into an argument on whether we were on X or W. So much for a game to keep them occupied. You would think Arizona children who live their life in a car could handle.
So,…. after 2 hours of windy roads and getting lost, and many of John’s uphill stick shift traumas, and several close calls with miniature semi trucks barreling around single lane hair-pin curves, we finally arrived at a beautiful beach called Pappa Nero. We stayed all of 10 minutes, because Dimitra was convinced there was a better beach just around the corner. This beach had large waves and tiny rocks that slammed into your feet as you tried to stand in the waves. It was like a tortuous Chinese foot massage with no escape. The water was amazingly clear and azure blue like a picture in a magazine, but you really couldn’t enjoy it much from the rock pummel you endure just trying to get in the water. (the good part is coming)
So back in the car, big sigh! up some more windy hills and down some more windy hills looking for Dimitra’s perfect beach. After asking a million directions, we finally get near a place we saw on the map with a little symbol of an umbrella which means ‘resort’, called Damouchari, nearly named after her. We drove until the little road ended, and parked. We would have to walk the rest of the way. We trekked down a small stony path thru some olive groves, and down some more trails and paths until we came to this hidden village nestled along a cove in the rocks by a historic castle. I couldn’t believe it when I saw it. There were like 4 or 5 restaurants, little shops and houses. The water was like a perfect swimming pool, calm and clear enough that 30 feet deep water looked like 5. I nearly cried from beauty overwhelment. All the shop owners and restaurant owners were super friendly and welcoming like they knew what a jewel they had and couldn’t wait to share it with us. We walked around and explored and Dino saw his first naked bather. He worked really hard to ignore her and act normal. Then we went to one of the beaches that had little tide pools filled with fish and critters for the kids to poke and try to catch.
We all swam in the cool clear water that felt exhilarating. It was truly an amazing place. Just when I didn’t think it was possible to be anymore blessed, I saw this dog walking along the beach that is the exact image of my most favorite dog I ever had, Gracey. She was a lab/chow mix, who lived with us for 16 years. We had to put her down about 5 years ago. I couldn’t believe it. It was like Gracey slipped out of doggy heaven to come spend an afternoon with us on the beach. This dog was super friendly to us too and wanted to be around us. It was such a blessing for our family to see this dog. If it wasn’t pregnant, I would have thought it was actually my dog. It even behaved like her and had her mannerisms. AMAZING!
We finished the afternoon with another great meal in our little paradise. We ate little fishes caught fresh in the sea, calamari, (of course) fried zucchini, and greek salad. This Greek meal would not be complete with out some kind of critter coming to beg for food. This time it was a white tom cat. He had a rough night sporting many injuries, from a chewed up foot, scratched up neck and bit off ear. Maybe he had a fight with himself, like Dino says. Anyway, he was oblivious to the fact that I do not care for cats, especially nasty, dinged up tom cats. He kept coming to me, paw on my knee with the puss in boots look, saying, “pssst, you got some feeshes for me”.
This day was one of those days you don’t ever forget. We are so thankful.