What a great place! Our esteemed captain kept to time and we staggered out of bed before 7am just as the ship anchored, 400 metres or so from the main harbour. Had we berthed at the pier, it was a little distance out of town, so the inconvenience of waiting patiently for your number to be called for the tender was no big deal, as all we were doing was wandering anyway. This is a charming place with the narrowest of streets that make the St Ives (UK) streets look like the M1. Too narrow even for the smallest of cars, so the preferred mode of transport by the shopkeepers appeared to be either scooters, or small three wheelers based on scooters, with a rear deck for the goods.
The place is immaculate with charming white painted buildings everywhere, with only doors and windows and foliage to add colour. Even the mortar between the cobbles is painted white! The shops are possibly a little pricey but overall, the goods for sale are quite classy and the shopkeepers friendly and polite. We caught Helen trying on a rather nice necklace and the expression on her face no doubt relates to the price, which was about equal to the cost of her cruise.... Cruise? Jewellery? - Jewellery? Cruise? H'mmm. Tough choice...
With no map of the place to hand we just meandered through the streets via Little Venice to the other side of the harbour and up the short hill to the windmills. In the car park we spied this no longer 'Smart' car. It looked as though it had been broken into but there was a pack of 8x5 wedding photographs inside. Whether it had been stolen and dumped or the owners had parked it and were in a local hotel honeymooning is anyone's guess. The last tender back to the ship was 1pm and we stopped en route for a local yogurt with fresh fruit. We had seen the size of the bowls so we just shared one - €4.50. Others found a supermarket selling cheap wine so were well pleased. I try and post the occasional menu/price board for anyone interested or planning future travel. It is always a help knowing prices and currencies. So far, we brought with us US dollars, Euros and obviously pounds. We changed a little currency in Singapore top Singapore dollars and then later into Malaysian and Indian Rupees. Usually, US dollars are accepted anyway and what you lose on trader's conversions, you just have to make up for it by bargaining.
A place we really enjoyed and we were quite happy just wandering around. Apparently, it really comes alive at night!
At Sea Again...
We opted to return to the ship about 11:45am and just had a light lunch before we set sail, heading for Istanbul at 13:30.
Obviously most passengers who attend the regular quiz sessions didn't read the Princess Patter to see a new addition – I think it was called the "Gift of the Gab". There were only about six teams and the irrepressible Bex was running it. It took the form of a PowerPoint slide show and although Bex read them out one word at a time, we had to say the words on the screen to ourselves and try and establish the real item or saying, such as 'ELF HABITS HOOP' or 'BAY BACH HEMP OOH' – translated as Alphabet Soup (which we did get) and Baby Shampoo – we didn't get. We got about 16/20 with a couple of halves, but as there were so few of us there, we all got a prize anyway!
The regular 4:30 quiz we got 16/20 and finished second.
After dinner, to the theatre to see a talented pianist - Amy Abler. A trained concert pianist but with a wide repertoire, it was an entertaining show, finishing off with a rather quick ragtime piece. No dancing again as we were still a bit off colour. Most of our table seem to have been affected with the Dawn (Cough) Chorus so Strepsils must be at the top of the sales list.
Istanbul tomorrow, no doubt a sharp contrast to Mykonos, with most looking forward to the Grand Bazaar.