Stranded

September 8, 2011 - ThessalonĂ­ki, Greece

Finally some free internet again!

I'm currently stuck in Thessaloniki, Greece, trying my best to get to Sofia, Bulgaria. And it's a nightmare!

To backtrack though... my night back to Naples was pretty uneventful. I caught the trains across to Bari and heading to the port from the train station I met a few other backpackers heading the same way. It made the long wait at hte port and the overnight ferry more than bearable! We ended up playing drinking games on deck at night on the ship and had a pretty great time. Once we got off the ship we hopped on a bus to take us from Patras (the port) to Athens. It was a bit of a long ride, and after over a day of travelling I was happy to get there.

My first day in Athens I hit all the major sites, and climbed a pretty big hill afterwards to catch the sunset. That's where I met an English guy who is working in Athens as a journalist. We hung out the rest of the night - he showed me some of the real Athens. I got a great gyro and we headed to a park run by the locals where someone had set up a projector screen and was playing a movie that night (a documentary about Argentina) and then out for some drinks. The next day was taking care of booking ferries and stuff to get to hte islands, then back out again at night with Constantine (the English journalist). It was a pretty cool stay.

I just barely caught my ferry to Santorini the next morning. The hostels on the islands are pretty great - they do port pick up and drop off for you, so you don't have to worry about anything! I got to my hostel at Perissa beach in Santorini and found out I was roommates with 2 of the girls from the ferry across to Greece! Our days there consisted of the beach, renting ATVs and exploring the island, and a day trip that we signed up for that took us to the volcano where we got to hike up to explore the crater, then on to the '"hot springs"(not quite what I was expecting, but I still loved it!), then to another island, Thirassia/Thirasia (I"ve seen a few different spellings). Thats where we rode donkeys up to the town on top and bummed around for a bit. The town was nearly abandonned though so there wasnt much to see... we walked around a bit and enjoyed the view then headed back down for a swim and getting back on the boat. The boat took us to Ia, a town in Santorini, that apparently is known for its sunsets. We found a spot along a wall to sit and enjoy the sunset... it was beautiful, but maybe not the best I've seen in the past few weeks!

After Santorini I headed to Ios - a party island filled with Australians. There my days were about lying on the beach or by the pool and of course having fantastic nights out. The islands overall were great places for some down time at this point in my trip. And I spent it with some great people too! Even on the ferry back to Athens from Ios I had some good company!

That's sort of where things went downhill though. After arriving in Athens from an overnight ferry I got on a train to Thessaloniki. There arent any trains crossing the border with Greece, so in order to leave I have to bus. The bus Thessaloniki is cheaper than from Athens, and I rode the train for free. Unfortunately though, the bus I was supposed to take to Sofia was full when it arrived (or nearly, and I wasn't the first to get on because I had to put my bag below). So I was left here! I got a hostel for the night - it's actually a really great little spot - and hoped to leave at 8 this morning, but when I went to get my ticket, the bus was already full... go figure! I'm going to try to exchange my ticket for yesterdays bus for todays and hopefully it will work out... If not, I know there is a later bus I could take, it will just mean I'll probably lose the money from the other one. Keep your fingers crossed for me, because I'd love to be in Sofia right now! But as for the moment, I'll make the best of my time in Greece (it would just be nice to have things sorted out!!).

Thinking of you all frequently and I hope everyone thats heading back to school is excited! If I get better internet access from here on out, I'll be updating more frequently and probably have better quality updates...


2 Comments

kayla:
September 8, 2011
It all sounds so great, Stephanie! Aside from the chaos of busses, of course.

"climbed a hill to go see the sunset"... wow. you're so free lol. And lovely.

I'm so glad you're still meeting people easily, too. I'm sure it's a relief everytime ytyou befriend some one. It must be so exciting. I can't imagine how you feel. Must be so liberating.

I LOVE YOU.

I miss you.

-Kayla
Ryan Potter:
September 8, 2011
everyones fingers are simultaneously crossed. well wishes to you!
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