today has been absolutely fantastic. woke up around 10am or so and started off the day with a trip to the grocery store to get the few things that i had forgotten the last time i was there. i had never realized how much i rely on written language throughout the day. even here in greece i’m okay not knowing how to speak greek because most people are super friendly and immediately switch to english. in the grocery store, however, the labels don’t just automatically switch their writing simply because i can’t read a damn thing that it says. so shopping for food has been a bit more complicated than i had anticipated (not sure why i didn’t think far enough ahead to realize that this would be a problem). i’m pretty sure i ended up buying whole milk for my cereal (which is a bit disappointing) and i had no clue what kind of white wine i got so i ended up buying some sprite as well to go with it (never waste wine! just keep adding sprite til you can drink it!).

after my 2nd food shopping adventure i headed back to drop stuff off in my apartment, change, grab a book, and head off to the beach near my residence. i layed out for a few hours and alternated between just relaxing and laying out, reading my book, and cooling off in the water. soon it was 2pm though so i scurried back to my room to change for my first class at HISA at 2:30 with cameron.

i raced down the street only to realize that i had forgotten my bottle of water (snap!) so i had to stop back at the grocery store again to buy one on my way to class. i meandered my way along the edge of town by the water, drinking my bottle of h2o and enjoying the sites, until i realized that i had 4 minutes to get to class and i still didn’t quite know where the building was. my casual meander soon became an oh-shit-shuffle towards the HISA building (which i ended up finding without trouble, thank goodness!). granted, i was the last one to get to class, but i was only 1 minute late and there were only 3 of us in there anyway, so no biggie.

the class was super interesting, cameron is a fantastic teacher. basically we’re going to be learning about the culture of the mediterranean, keeping track of it all in a journal, going on field trips all the damn time, occasionally doing presentations, and hopefully learning about ourselves and the people who came before us in this area. swell!! by the time class was over we had discussed the basics of paros geography and animal life and recieved three reading due the next class.

the two other girls in there with me headed back to the apartment but i stayed back and ended up sitting out on a cropping of rocks to enjoy the day and get my readings done. feeling the breeze in my hair and hearing the ocean waves tumble across the rocks was probably the best environment that i’ve ever done homework in. i stayed there for an hour or so til my readings were finished and i had taken in a sufficient amount of sun.

chilling on an outcropping of rock near the HISA school doing some reading for my class

then i traipsed off to find an old church that i had seen during our initial tour of the town with cameron. turns out that it wasn’t too far away so i hiked my way up and perched over the town and the water for another hour or so. i can’t quite put my finger on it but there’s just something that speaks to me about that spot. there was a giant piece of marble right next to the entrance door and i ended up sitting there watching the sun and the waves and contemplating my day for a while. ..until the tourists showed up. ughhhh!! they all kept garbling in their own respective languages and walking to and fro and pointing at the sunset and taking lots of pictures. it was all too much and i ended up just heading back to the apartment for a bit where i fixed some food and watched the newest ANTM episode (i can’t help it!) until everyone from the program met up to go out for the night.

lots of wind, lots of hair up by the church

my view of the sunset over the aegean from my seat up by the church

we headed over to a local chill bar to hear an old school greek folk band and (surprise!) drink more wine!! gahh the band was amazing, they completely put me in a trance. it was like i was vicky in the movie vicky christina barcelona, in awe and focusing so intently on the music that nothing else seemed to matter. mum, you would have absolutely loved it!! me and a girl, madeline, in my program have decided that we now have new criteria for our hypothetical greek boyfriends: must be able to play chill greek folk music on a guitar. i’ll let you all know how that goes. the music eventually came to a close and us students headed out, without paying for our drinks.

i’ve noticed that this is a common theme when we go out with the HISA teachers. the first night barry said he was going to buy “the first round, and that’s it!” but we all ended up drinking at least 7 or 8 bottles. tonight we all ordered one drink (i had wine, some people had beer, one chick had some fancy-schmancy blended confection) and as we got up to leave barry waved us on and said that he’d cover it. hmm, i wonder if it’ll always be like this? cause if so, i’m pretty much just never leaving greece!!

so anyway, we all left and half the kids went back to the apartment but me and daniel and lindsay went for a nighttime stroll down the main drag in town. it was pretty lovely; the stars were so bright and being able to hear the waves softly wooshing in made it even better. the two of them headed back after only 10 minutes or so and i decided to stay out sitting on one of the docks. surrounded by water, taking in all the lights from the town and the stars in the sky, focusing on the soft sounds of the aegean i sat deep in thought and enjoying the moment. a wonderful end to a wonderful day!

oh wait, then i came back and went to shower but midway through the shower curtain rod came smashing down and ruined the whole thing. well shit, it was almost a perfect day. well i’m off to bed; i’m going to try and get up at a decent time tomorrow and go grab breakfast someplace on the water!!