The heat hit us as we stepped out of the plane. We paused for a moment in the sun, waiting for a shuttle which literally took us 200 metres to the terminal. Why? Who knows!
With one gentleman checking passports, we all dutifully queued in the sun; shuffling slowly forward until it was our turn. Cooler air hit us as we moved out of the sun and into the tiny terminal at Mykonos Airport.
We all had brought hand luggage so we headed straight outside the terminal to search for our names in the sea of hotel signs. A gentleman by the name of Dimitris who owns our hotel gave us a warm greeting, and we loaded our bags and ourselves into his car for a complimentary transfer back to the hotel. He chatted to us the whole way back, telling us about Mykonos and its culture. Every so often, he would give the horn a friendly beep and a wave to say hello to passing locals.
As we drove up the street, he pointed to another hotel and said “There is a swimming pool in there you can use, it’s owned by my cousin”, adding that pretty much the entire street was family.
Once we arrived at the Fraskoula’s Rooms (our hotel), we were greeted cheerfully by Anna, Dimitris’ wife. She showed us to our rooms, which were each a different colour and quite simple, yet homely.
“Be down at the reception in ten minutes so that Dimitris can show you everything on the map,” she instructed. Being tourists who knew where nothing was, we were all too keen to oblige. We met in reception and they offered us freshly picked apricots from a nearby tree. Dimitris gave us a paper map and pointed out good beaches, how to get there by bus, the ferry terminal to get to Santorini next week and the town. He drew local spots on it for the best giros pitas and seafood, and showed us the easiest way to hop from beach to beach if we wanted to.
“This circuit in town takes twelve minutes to walk, although with women…who knows,” he said jovially, “There are lots of shops”. We laughed and so did he.
Our first impressions on arrival in Greece were of warmth – both temperature and temperament – and hospitalty. We spent the entire afternoon lounging around the pool and the beach which is five minutes down the hill. When I told Anna that I couldn’t fit my beach towel in my bag to bring and asked if I would be able to borrow one, she immediately went and found me one! I can’t wait to see what these next ten days bring, but if today is anything to go by I’m sure they will be great!