I am currently in the middle of the first two week, summer holiday I have had for a very long time – soaking up the sunshine in Greece and making the most of the time to relax and do… next to nothing.
Whilst I could share many images, a few stories and one or two restaurant reviews, no one really wants to read about that. I do however, want to share three personal images…
The first image is a picture postcard view.
It is, of course, a beach.
And the scene before me was so similar to hundreds I’ve seen before of idyllic holiday destinations that I just had to share it.
The location is ‘Kathisma Beach’ and it is quite simply, stunning. There are no jet-skis; no water-skiers (though I love to do both of these activities!). There is nothing that can disturb the tranquil beauty of the turquoise sea – apart from those who can’t resist cooling off, swimming or just splashing about.
As some of you know (from my experiences last year), I can now swim front crawl ‘properly’ (head down, mouth up every third stroke) and I can swim further and faster than ever before, using a fraction of the energy. This holiday has given me the opportunity to push through and actually swim like this in open water for the first time. After struggling to swim through either misty or reed-infested water in the UK, swimming here has been a totally different experience, providing clarity like I’ve never seen before. My wife counted thirty-three strokes before I stopped to see how far I’d got. Previously, I’d never swam more than about six strokes in the sea!
The second point to note, on the walk back up the hill from a taverna the other night, was that of a collection of rubbish that caught my attention. I was extremely impressed with not only how much rubbish had been squeezed into a relatively small, twin public street bin but how much care must have gone into the final few pieces that had been added.
We all have rubbish in our lives (even if we think we don’t!) and – of course – it’s good to try to be a bit careful with it. Some of us however, for whatever reasons, find it difficult to be at all tidy about our rubbish – that’s okay too – but we could take inspiration from this bin.
Whilst taking some time out, and reading a challenging book, I’ve been considering how I for one, can be a little bit more patient with others, regardless of whether their rubbish is obvious or not.
Third point. On our second trip to the beach, we took a wrong turn and ended up driving on some hair-raising, dangerous narrow roads that contained no barriers and a sheer drop down several hundred feet of mountain ravine.
It wasn’t a massive problem to me as I was driving (!) and for the most part, the drop was on the passenger side! I can’t say the problem was as small for my wife… but we survived, and eventually made it to the beach. (No photos were taken during this particular road trip for obvious reasons).
Coastlines are special places for me and so – facing a bit of danger – maybe even dealing with a bit of rubbish along the way – is always worth it. I’m tempted to say, ‘Life is a beach’… but (as detailed above) not always in the way you might think it will be.
We should all take time to sit with our fellow travellers and enjoy the view: