Andros, the last island we hit, does not have the frequent ferry service that the more popular islands, like Santorini, Naxos, and Myconos, have. Consequently, it is a very quiet, far less touristy island. Our life was so slow there I could swear it was moving backwards at one point, but it was wonderful. The first couple days we were there I am pretty sure we were 2 of about 10 foreign tourists on the whole island. We knew we were escaping the hubbub of the more popular places when we were on a near empty ferry and only 10 of us got off at Andros (by comparison, we were swept away by crowds of hundreds of people off-loading on Santorini and Myconos). The town where we wanted to stay, Hora, was on the other side of the island. The bus schedule to the town seemed to have nothing to do with the ferry schedule so instead of waiting 2 1/2 hours for the next bus we shared a taxi with two of the other 8 people who disembarked with us. One was Dutch woman who had been staying on the island for 2 weeks at that point (she must have read a LOT of books) and the other was a Scotish guy named Hamish who had been working as a civil servant for the British Government in Cyprus for 7 months. He was enjoying a quick vacation to Greece before returning to London. We spent the next two days hanging out with Hamish.
The last couple days we were there we discovered that Andros is a very popular weekend destination for Greek tourists. It is only 2 1/2 hours from the mainland, a pretty easy trip to make on Saturday morning. All the little cafes lining the main pedestrian street in town were suddenly packed with people nursing a latte and enjoying an incessant string of cigarettes. It is still considered low-season in Greece (a great financial bonus for us as everything was still at low-season prices; they double in high season--July and August) so the real crowds are still to come.
We celebrated Snowden's birthday on the island of Mykonos. We were going to shy away from Mykonos as it is reputed to be The Party Island, however, we realized we had to pass through there to get a ferry to Andros so we made sure we found a hotel in a quiet part of town. We found a nice Italian restaurant to celebrate his birthday with some pasta and wine. It was an impressively windy day when we were there. We had reservations on the SuperFast Ferry from Paros to Mykonos but it was cancelled due to the high winds. That gave a few extra hours to enjoy lunch on Paros and catch our mid-afternoon regular ferry.
The main town of Mykonos is a confusing maze of narrow alleys packed with art, jewelry, and souvenir shops. It's very easy to get completely turned around, especially when you are as directionally-challenged as I am. In our journey to scout out restaurants for dinner we found a couple that looked really good, but we couldn't figure out how to get back to them. Fortunately, the town is quite small and even after walking around in circles for a while we were able to stumble across a familiar street to get us back up to our hotel.
Now that we have moved onto Italy we are working out how we will spend the rest of our time in Europe. Our plans have changed daily, frequently rather drastically, and we have been busy working out plane, train, bus, and boat schedules and figuring out where to go when. It seems that 80% of life on the road consists of figuring out where we're going to sleep and how we will get there, what, where, and when we will eat next (and whether or not we will like it is the topic of many conversations), where we can go to the bathroom, and making sure we have packed the toilet paper and sunscreen in our daypack. Some days, much of that is tedious, some days it leads us to hilarious (often ridiculous) mini-adventures, but most days it's really just 'A Day in the Life on the Road'. In between all that, we make sure we have our camera with us so if we feel the impulse to jump we can capture it on film.
We hope you are all well, wherever you are.