That was yesterday. My holiday started at 4 am when I woke up to catch the 5 am train to Bucharest, hoping I would catch the 8:52 bus from the station to the airport. My flight to Thessaloniki was at 12:30 but in Romania you never know with the trains, the traffic etc. It is better to be safe than sorry. So, in order to be safe than sorry, I had to wake up at 4 am to get to Thessaloniki at 2 pm. From my town to Thessaloniki is 600 kilometers, but since no plane flies there from my town, well, I have to travel about 2 hours to the airport in Bucharest to catch a one hour and a half long flight.
Oh, and was it the International Day of “tell a stranger your life story” yesterday and I wasn’t aware of it? Because yesterday, all the means of transportation I had to use, contained at least one person that seemed to be celebrating the International Day of “tell a stranger your life story”.
For example, in the train. I left the train with a brain damage, I swear to all gods out there. I mean, it is bad enough a Romanian train takes at least 3 hours to do 209 kilometers. Can’t I at least spend these 3 hours in silence, especially if those hours are between 5 am and 8 am? Is that too much to ask?
Here is what happened. I sat next to two senior citizens. For three hours, one of them talked and the other one listened. Each time the listener tried to say something, the talker would interrupt him. The talker had a loud, strong voice, that went through my earbuds easily. I couldn’t read or watch a movie or listen to music. Against my will, I had to listen to his medical record, some memories from the time he was in the army, about how his daughter was doing in Spain, about the Spanish lifestyle, Spanish trains, Spanish villages, Spanish roads. The listener tried several times to talk about his own memories from the army, his own medical record and about how is son was doing in France, about French lifestyle and French food and French trains. He never made an entire sentence.
Later on, in the bus, two seats behind me a lady was telling her life story to a perfect stranger and in the plane the same, someone was sharing too much to their seat partner. Lucky me, the engines were louder than the person speaking so I had an hour and a half of a sort of peace.
Finally, at 3 pm I was checking in at the Avra Hotel. It was really funny, the owner asked me if I have ever been to her hotel before, because my name was so familiar to her. Hmmm, and I thought I was not famous yet. Now I have to behave here, because I might have a reputation that I am not aware of and I don’t want to ruin it. This in case I have a good reputation. I will have to find out. Back to the owner, she is the most lovely and friendly lady I have ever met in the travel industry, and I have quite a history in the travel industry as I was a travel agent for quite some time. I wonder if I also have a reputation in the travel industry. A good one, I mean.
Anyway, once again back to Marina, the owner. She is all smiles and courtesy, I feel like I am in Canada. Her hotel is really nice, if you ever come to Perea (a suburb of Thessaloniki) you should stay at Avra Hotel. Besides Marina, this hotel has the beach right outside so what more can you wish for?
In the evening, we had dinner on the beach. I could get used to having the waves almost washing my feet while eating. What I love about Greece is that so many things are on the house. Last night the bread, the water, the creme brule and the second round of beer were on the house. You got to love Greece. I know I do!
Then, exhausted of the long trip, of the eating calamari and of drinking Mythos beer, I passed out at 9 pm and slept for twelve hours straight. I dreamed that I was at the museum, getting ready for an opening and I was having a crisis because the manager didn’t have socks. Why am I dreaming about work on holiday? Why, God, why?