Lazy Sitia

Trip Start Oct 22, 2005
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Greece  ,
Saturday, August 5, 2006

With no other option than to take a later ferry from Sitia, so we could continue our journey to Turkey, we boarded a bus bound for the northeast corner of Crete. In actual fact it was the best move we could have made. It gave us the opportunity to experience the real Greece we had been seeking.

The drive itself took us along the cliff edge for most of the two hour journey, with constant glimpses of tiny little private beaches and coves with lone boats bobbing in the calm, clear blue water. Arriving in Sitia, we got off the bus and were approached by a man, introducing himself as Manuel. He told us about some rooms he had for rent at his pension and asked if we would like to see them, dubious we looked at each other, then he said the magic word's "20 Euro per night". It sounded cheap so we decided to have a look. The place was awesome! It was a row of four white washed rooms all with private bathrooms. The little courtyard out the front was shaded by grape vines, with juicy green grapes hanging off in abundance. The white of the building was offset by bright pink flowers, some in pots and others in old paint tins. There was also a little garden with a multitude of colours and variety of plants and fruit trees. Manuel settled us in and we dropped all our bags and changed into our beach wear. Walking the fifty meters down the end of the road we were greeted by the crisp blue waters of the Mediterranean.

The peacefulness was broken after frolicking in the water for an hour of so, when Rick turned to Megan in horror and said "I think I've lost the key to the room". No amount of searching the clear waters could find it so we trudged back hoping Manuel would still be at the pension with a spare key (the lock was only a padlock anyway). Alas he wasn't but some Aussie girls also staying there had a bit of a chuckle at our predicament then mentioned he might be back soon. We went for a wander trying to find him, as the town was only little, and asked at the tourist office to try and ring him. The tourist office guy assured us that Manuel would be back soon and that he was always wandering around somewhere in town. With nothing else to do we bought few beers and settle in under the grape vines for a chat with our fellow travelers. Manuel eventually returned and after explaining what had happened he looked a little perplexed at how we could loose a key within the first hour of checking in. He managed to rummage up a spare key, initially refusing any money as a replacement, but we felt so embarrassed we made him take some. All the time he was saying "No worries, enjoy, relax!" and he even ran back to his house to pick some figs for us all to eat.

We talked for hours trading travel stories with the other travelers Manuel had seduced and eventually we all had a late dinner at a water front restaurant. We spent two days in Sitia waiting for our ferry to Turkey. We have to admit it was the best part of Greece we experienced. We did nothing but sleep in, eat lovely food, relax and every night wander down to the beach for a dip. Every morning Manual would bring a new group of travelers that he had found at the bus stop. He had his sales technique perfected and must have been making a killing.
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