1) Kids. Specifically, kids working. Especially coming from Germany where all I’ve heard about lately is how the Greek economy is a disaster and no one there works or pays taxes. And then you get there, and it was a bit strange to see little kids hawking flowers in the clubs. Or hauling your beach bags up on the boats for you when you’re struggling in and out of the water. I particularly enjoyed one kid in the club in Ios who started mock fighting with a greased-up douchebag after he got his hair ruffled one too many times. But I did feel pretty bad for them… I mean who lets their kid run around clubs full of drunk people trying to sell flowers at 4am? It was weird.
2) Animals. There are animals just running all over the place on the islands. Santorini is of course famous for its donkeys, which yes, we did ride. I felt bad for both the donkeys, and the unsuspecting tourists who were trying to walk up and down the same path as the donkeys. I can’t count the number of times I said, “sorry, sorry, sorry!” as my donkey veered into some tourist and pinned them against the wall. He also got oddly competitive with the other donkeys, but only at inconvenient times… like, on corners, which result in lots of jostling and crashing into other people. Besides the donkeys though, there are cats and dogs just roaming about pretty much everywhere.
Another favorite was a particularly feisty golden lab on the beach in Ios. This is a bit odd as well, just because I don’t think you can bring a dog to any beach in the U.S. anymore (feel free to correct me if I’m wrong). I think we saw him every day we were there, and I assume he was a visitor as well and not a resident, but he was fuuuuunny. He had a penchant for water bottles, and spent a fair amount of time running around sniffing after them. My favorite was the one day when he ran up to where some girls had left their belongings while they were topless tanning* down at the waterline. He made a beeline for a water bottle, snatched it and high-tailed it out of there. I giggled.
As for photos, I didn’t get pictures of any of the kids at work because that felt… weird… but I did try to snap some of the assorted animals on the islands…
|Santorini’s famous donkeys.|
|You can take them home with you!|
|View from atop Steve, when he took a 10-minute break from climbing.|
|Tyson, the very famous dog at our Ios hotel.|
*I don’t know why I included that they were topless… it’s not like it’s unusual or anything. I just thought it was funnier that they didn’t have tops on when this happened.