I ended last time as Kristen and I were about to catch our train to Milan. We were a little behind so we sprinted through the station like maniacs only to get to the correct terminal and find that the train wasn’t even there yet. We were headed to the Milan airport to catch a flight to Athens, but we had a connection in the main Milan station. Unfortunately, our train to the airport was delayed and we missed our flight to Athens. Cue series of unfortunate events… We were unable to get any sort of refund from our flight or any kind of compensation, a new flight, nada. I guess that’s pretty standard, but when we were told that our only option was to wait ten hours and then pay 250 euro for a flight that would get us to Athens at 2:30AM, I cried. Kiiiiiiiind of caused a scene. We couldn’t just cancel our trip because we had already booked hostels and ferries to Santorini as well as a flight back to Spain from Athens, so we had to get to Athens. And then I sat in gum, which was actually pretty funny except for the fact that I was wearing black athletic pants, had nothing to change into, and the gum would NOT come off so I walked around with gum pants on for about 24 hours. In my already emotionally fragile state I developed a paranoia that everyone we talked to saw/intuitively knew about my gum pants and was laughing inside. Which might be true because it was kind of hard to miss if you happened to glance at my backside. 🙂
After a layover in Budapest we made it to Athens at 2:30AM and dueling banjos was playing over the airport speakers. Then we went to try to sleep on the floor between the McDonalds and the bathrooms until we could catch a bus to the port at 5:30AM. Kristen was successful, I was not, and when 5:30 came we boarded our bus to Athens’ port. We made our ferry and found Hailey, David, and Jessica who had made the flight that we missed and settled in for 8 hours of smooth sailing. Then I realized I had left my iPod touch at the charging station at the Athens airport. Noooooooooo. It was like pulling teeth to try and call the airport to see if anyone had picked it up – payphones didn’t work, had to buy internet so that I could actually find the number, and eventually I used a random man’s cell phone that had bad reception and I’m not sure that the person I was speaking to understood English. RIP iPod, you left much too soon.
The ferry was like a cruise ship – lounges, restaurants, etc. – and I stretched out on a couch and got quite a bit of sleep. Upon our arrival in Santorini, we were picked up by the cutest middle-aged couple in a van and transported to our hostel. It took me about 3 seconds to start entertaining the thought of abandoning all life plans and moving to Greece. The lady was named Poppy and she was SO sweet and bubbly and I’ve forgotten her husbands name but he had EURO SWAG with his shaggy hair, puma tennis shoes, and aviators. Our hostel had an infinity pool (unfortunately it was a little too chilly to swim), huge BBQ deck, comfy beds, and was right in the middle of everything. Poppy told us she had a friend who we could rent 4-wheelers from for 12 euro a day and we decided that sounded amazing, so after we put our bags away a crazy man came to pick us up in his van and take us to get the 4-wheelers.
Renting those things was probably the best decision of our trip. We had a BLAST driving them all over the island – it was like having a car again – FREEDOMMMMMMMM! I literally could not stop smiling the entire time I was driving around, and when I realized I could sing as loud as I wanted to and no one could hear me through their helmets and the sound of their engines, I did that too. I did catch a few weird looks from pedestrians, but I was so full of joy that I just couldn’t hold it in. We spent quite a bit of time in Oía, the village where the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants was filmed, and it was one of the most picturesque places I’ve ever been. We saw an absolutely breathtaking sunset there and explored around, met a few locals, and became friends with all the street dogs that were running around. I will say that Kostas from the movie The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants is misleading…Greek males tend to look more like the guys off of Jersey Shore than Kostas.