Tuesday, April 29, 2014


or more correctly Antiparos which is a small island just off the coast of Paros which we have been told is worth a visit.  First up was a visit to our local moped shop to hire our trusty steeds for another day but this time there was a problem because nobody other than myself has a motorbike license which is apparently a requirement for the insurance.  It wasn't a couple of days ago but apparently it is one now so I ended up hiring all four motorbikes to satisfy the insurance requirement.  Thinking about it now we should just have dispensed with the insurance and then all would have been well.

Hogs obtained we barreled on down to the ferry which we made by the skin of our teeth at 11:00.  I could see the ferry crossing from about 5 km away and then it was a race to get there which I did but I wasn't sure that Caron and Kirsten were going to make it so I parked with my front wheel resting on the loading ramp.  Caron and Kirsten arrived in short order and we all boarded and the ferry left immediately.  When I was racing to make it I crouched down to get out of the wind and there was a squeak from Megan behind me as she took the force of the wind for the first time; I must have looked quite comical the two of us crouched down on a moped racing away.

 The ferry trip turned out to be really short and within about 10 minutes we were on Antiparos so we had to celebrate with coffee and pancakes or chocolate fondant.  The service was a bit slow and the dishes arrived sporadically but when they did arrive they were delicious.  The town of Antiparos was tiny and we headed down south on the only road and went to see the caves which were well signposted.

 When we got to the entrance it was 5 Euro per person and all we could see was this large cave entrance with a little church in it.  As picturesque as there were it seemed a lot for 5 Euro so we were about to walk away when the ticket lady gave us a brochure and the caves were a lot bigger than they looked so we decided to go and have a look.

From an inauspicious start the caves were pretty amazing and had a concrete steps all the way down to the bottom, 411 steps if the brochure is to be believed.  The older graffiti like in the picture above must have been quite an effort because as easy as it is now with built in steps it would have been a very difficult  at that stage with candles and the vertical drops and scree slopes to navigate in near darkness.  Once we had finished it was up and back into the blinding light and the blustery wind which was making the mopeds a bit of a challenge to control.

Heading further south, or north according to Carl whose world appears to be upside down, we came across what looks like a building development arrested by the Greek financial crisis which had a few restaurants next to the ocean, one of which was open.  While everyone was sheltering in the restaurant ordering I headed over to a blue topped church I had spied on the way in but it turned out to be quite a lot further than I thought and by the time I managed to return everyone was half way through their meal. 

The greek cuisine is a bit weird because they have excellent ingredients and tastes but overdo the quantities so if one orders fried zucchini one gets a whole plate of only fried zucchini and, nice as it is, a whole plateful is too much.  Likewise, an order of fried shrimp is a whole plate of fried shrimp without relief and good as it is, it is just too much.  Since I hadn't ordered I stole from everyone else's plate and some zucchini, aubergine, fried feta, crab salad, bruchetta, shrimp and octopus made a fantastic meal.   A little variety on the plate goes a long way for me and I can't believe that the greeks haven't cottoned onto this because I am pretty sure that I am not alone.

The picture above is the gang looking bored while I stop and take yet another photograph. They are very happy to have the photo later on but the taking of them is somewhat on the boring side.  Actually they were just acting bored while I took the photo below showing a windmill on the southern side of Parikia which is the major town on Paros.

After a long day in the saddle and the wind we stayed at home and I made supper which consisted mainly of heating up last nights leftovers and then a greco-italian inspired meal for Carl and myself of pasta with an olive, tomato and feta sauce with toppings of greek youghurt and origanum.  Not half bad if I say so myself.

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