Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Europe in 10 1/2 Days. Last Day on Crete.

One of Crete's Gorges.
Tunnel near the edge of the gorge.
Our time on Crete was winding down, after our breakfast at Milia, it was bags on, and hike back to the car, loading it up and onto the gravel road back. Once on the pavement, we don't go real far and we find one of Crete's Gorges. These gorges offer great views and hiking trails if you choose.
The gorge gets so steep that a tunnel was warranted, and of course, it's a one lane tunnel, but controlled by stop lights.

Road side vender.
Two friendly Greeks.
Our final destination is to the city of Chania where we'll board the midnight fairy to Athens. Prior to there our host and hostess has been wanting us to stop at a road side kantina, but on previous days we was closed. So we take one more drive by and he's open today. Upon arrival, this table behind the kantina is full of people, but they invite us to join them anyways. Out comes the wine glasses, and the toast's begin. Only one knows English, and his first words to me is, "what took you so long my friend to come visit us?" One of the couples have to leave, but prior to leaving he tells the vender to wine and dine us and that he'll stop by later to pay. This behavior was always present, very friendly people on Crete. So toasted bread, fresh tomatoes, cheese, chicken on a stick, fish, and of course wine starts to head to the table. The man on the right was our translator, and he told us that the gentleman on his right was dressed in black and had facial hair because he was in mourning for the loss of a grandson.

Fishing lady.
After our light lunch it was off to a beach for a little relaxation. We ran into Rose, who was born in Greece, had lived in the US for awhile, but had returned home to take care of her elderly parents. She was on the beach fishing and we had a nice visit.

Our short stay found us shortly back in the car and off to Chania, which is a port city and where we flew into 5 days ago. Our ship is sailing at 9pm so we have about 3 hours to walk around the Venetian Harbour. Shops and waterfront restaurants are in abundance. Again, the tourism is at a low right now, it being January, so some of the shops are closed. Like all tourist areas, there are lots of jewelry stores, t-shirt shops, boot shops(a note for all the woman reading this blog, the European fashion is wearing knee high boots), and clothing stores. Abby and I stop at a restaurant for a cocktail and some horderves. We have a sampler platter, tomatoes, cheese, olives, sausage, meat balls, to name a few of the items. Of course, we even end this with a shot of Raki.

Lighthouse in Chania.

As the sun begins to set, we gaze over the harbour, to the the light house, out to the sea and begin to reflect on what just happened over the last 5 days of our lives. One of the selling points of this trip was to learn about the healty ways of the people in the Mediterranean region. Being diabetic, I have to say I was real pleased with my glucose this week. Usually I go on vacations and my glucose goes up and down like a yo-yo trying to jump the string. That didn't happen this trip, so just maybe their life style is better. What foods stood out to me, fresh yogurt, fresh honey, greek salad,  tomatoes, the use of olive oil, the meats, cheese's, and of course the wine and Raki. We also did get a lot of walking in. So good food and exercise is the way to go.

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