Sunday, 10 May 2009

Hotel, scenery, food, etc

Writing this in the hotel lobby as people prepare to leave after a very successful conference. Some are staying on to enjoy the pool, beach, food, views etc. This is an exceptional hotel - very very friendly and offering superb service and help, and wonderful food, at a very reasonable price - low even!

I am leaving at 6am with three others in the car, sharing costs. I am so fortunate as to be able to meet up with my friend Daphne who lives in Athens, and can take a little time off work, because we will be at the airport before midday for someone's flight, but mine does not go till 9.30pm. It will be a long day!

This morning I walked with another delegate up the lane beside the hotel, through some old olive groves, to see the view from the hilltop. Things are clearly changing with villas and new houses appearing in the fields. One house had beautiful flowers all around and two very large barkign dogs, who aroused their owner's interest. He came out to see who we were and told us he had lived there for 12 years but it's now getting like France, he said - with burglaries all the time. He has wire fences and his guard-dogs to help. Trouble in Paradise.

We just had a wonderful buffet lunch on the terrace, with Greek salad to start (of course), this time varied with tiny little cheese pastries, and red cabbage chopped raw into the lettuce. And there were freshly cooked octopus and deep-fried mushrooms on the hot table, with masses of other options. Yummy.

After farewells and all that for the people leaving this afternoon, I shall go to the pool and catch a few rays. If I have the energy I can wander into town and shop - but, really, why? I saw some very nice handmade pottery the other day and wondered if I might take some back, but - well, I don't need them. It all has to be lugged back, too.

This has been a very heartwarming, international, successful meeting and everyone is pretty much on a high. We have made new friends and plans for the next one next year. I certainly hope to come here again, privately or otherwise. It really is lovely.

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