wk 20 – flowerzilla, parentals & grecian kittens

A long weekend with little brother and sister-in-law-family-to-be, was as always good fun, lots of eating, drinking and for me the chance to find out a bit more about the wedding plans, resist becoming a flowerzilla, go to see the venue and sample the evening menu, I will of course not reveal anything, as it will be all the more magical on the day and boogeying night!!!  Loc and I also had a week of fun trying to book flights back for the big day, for some reason Qatar chose to take a few grand out of our account for over a week, after lots of emails finally revesed out, hoping for upgrade to silk pjs after all the hassle at the least!!

I think the parentals were relieved to get a bit of quiet as we all simultaneously left on the Tuesday, when we took off to, Volos, an apt name for an airport town, and anything that took us to Greece from Italy for 12 euros each was fine by me…(although at point of writing we are somewhat unsure if we will get back due to storms and ferry hold up…!! Maybe via Albania instead?!)

The plane, from a much larger than I remember Ciampino, was so empty that only the first two and last 8 rows could be occupied, for balance I suppose, so Loc and I flew budget business in rows 2A and 2B, and the few of us on board appeared to consist entirely of Italians given the major clap on landing and quasi standing ovation on drawing to a screeching angled stop outside the terminal, which was actually still locked.

After waiting in a bit of a muddle with a slightly embarassed security guard, it eventually opened and we walked the 20m through to the otherside (didn’t have the heart to suggest we all walked round it instead if not waiting for luggage!!). Half of us meandered onto an airport bus, so about 7 plus one large backpack (needless to say not ours) and it eventually left and trundled into Volos town, a fair way from the actual middle of nowhere field where for some random reason (not complaining) there was an airport…discovered later this was more than likely built to enable the planes from the ‘positive’ take off at Skiathos (i.e. you need to get this one right or you’ll end up in the ocean at either end of the runway) to refuel as they need to be light.

Volos bus station was a little dodge as all are, town itself was suprisingly not bad, walkways, cobblestones and a port to the Sporades, debate about order of the 3 islands was decided and in retrospect perfect.

and so a return 10 years later, and now post MM (will explain in later blog) to the Sporades islands was on… via slow ferry to Alonnissos…

It was as though the closing of beach, taverna, hotel has followed us from Alonissos to Skopelos and now Skiathos, we are truly living and loving the start of the off season, and until this evening the weather has been beautiful, and there was something poetic about all the huge tour buses and 34 suitcases per head winding their way to the airport for the “last plane from Skiathos” (sure there’s a song in that) leaving the beaches to us… 

The beaches on Alonnissos are stunning and each so different, stones, sand, pine, and on our favourite Agios Dimitrious, a meet and greet kittten, don’t get me started on Greek cats, whole post to come…

We were amongst the silence of our 3 days in Steni Vala, a tiny fishing village usual population 80, treated to a big fat Greek wedding with 300 guests, complete with major bridesmaid drama (she spent most of the evening in the loo with another bridesmaid) we think perhaps the bride stole her bloke…plus a stunning collection of bright purple balloons (don’t worry N, most definitely not giving me ideas!!)

A few more gratuitous photos of Alonnissos and then I need to sign off as I’m writing this blog in 12 degrees in front of a stormy sea…I kid you not, we were swimming and sunbathing yesterday afternoon…

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