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SantoriniSantorini & Mykonos, Greece

October 31, 1996

Santorini

We arrived in Santorini early on Halloween: I had to get up early to catch my tour of the island.  After a quick breakfast, my tour group and I took a tender into port.

Santorini is interesting just for its geology: It's a set of small islands in a ring formation.  The place is volcanic and the islands were formed when the most recent volcano blew itself to pieces around 1640 B.C.  The most recent eruption was in 1950, but it's fairly quite now.  (I sure hoped so!)

Our first stop took us to Akrotiri, where there was a large archeological dig going on. Minoan ruins discovered on Santorini are being examined for clues on that period.  There is some speculation that the 1640 eruption of Santorini is the basis for the legend of Atlantis.  At least our guide thought so: he was very enthusiastic about the finds and seemed like he couldn't wait to get back to digging.  Nice to see someone enjoying their work. :-)

Afterwards, we headed for the town of Thera (a.k.a. Fira) to do some sightseeing.  Thera is a very beautiful town of whitewashed stucco overlooking the central caldera of Santorini.  Fantastic view: we could see the central volcano and the ship in the distance.  There were cats everywhere (as I would find out in later trips, this seemed to be a common feature of Mediterranean islands)  When the sun came out (it was rather overcast that day) everything seemed to shine!

All to soon, it was time to head back to the ship.  To get back down, there were two choices: a mule ride, or a cable car.  Not wanting to have a sore ass (hah!), I elected for the cable car, which went almost straight down the cliff back down to the dock.

Mykonos

We departed that afternoon for Mykonos.  I decided to try and get a little exercise in the ship's gym while we headed out: it had a nice selection of equipment, I found!

We arrived in Mykonos that evening.  It's a popular resort area, and was filled with shops and nightclubs.  I wandered the streets for a while, looking at the people and places.  The whitewashed buildings seemed to glow with all the lights.   It looked like people were having lots of fun!

I picked up a small ice cream snack before I headed back to the ship.   One thing I *didn't* get (which I now regret) is a pin from the Hard Rock Cafe on the island!  It's become a habit with me on my trips to pick up a pin from a Hard Rock if one is around.

Toga, Toga, Toga!

I grabbed some dinner after I got back on the ship.  Afterwards,   I decided to head to the ballroom to see what the toga party was like!  There were lots of people dancing in a Conga line, laughing up a storm!

I hit the casinos that evening to try my luck at the slots.  I ran into a girl I'd met on the Santorini excursion: she somehow got to tell the story of her life (unfortunately, it hadn't been going so well)  She also claimed to be good luck at the slots: people near her would win (although she wouldn't!).  I gave this theory a test, and while it seemed to work for a while I still ended up poorer than when I started!

Feeling a little shell-shocked, I cashed in my chips (or actually, what was left of them), and headed off to bed.  Tomorrow: Rhodes!

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1997-2000 William Geoffrey Shotts. Last update: Saturday, November 02, 2002