Just the missing sun loungers, or are other things starting to wind down?
Town this last few nights have been busy but then that might be due to the fact it’s been over the weekend. Roads are definitely quieter when out and about. The Skiathos Princess beach restaurant all closed up already was quite surprising; I would have guessed there is still money to be made! September flights are always still expensive because of demand and September is still so beautiful that it’s in their interests to keep all open for another few weeks at least.
Day 14 Last full day, how has that happened so quickly! Days at work certainly don’t go this fast.... We had breakfast at Hotel Panorama again and couldn’t be swayed on our decision to spend our last day on Mandraki Elias, our new favourite beach with our favourite chips 😄. It’s not only the chips that draw us here, I promise. We sunbathed, swam or rather were bobbed around the waves which were particularly strong today, had Greek salad and chips (obviously), and left feeling a little sad that we wouldn’t be back anytime soon. Before leaving the tractors were out - one driving along the shoreline with a tank, went to the far end of the beach to fill up, I guess for the water butts used to flush the toilets or for the showers. The other tractor was ferrying loungers off to their winter hiding place! As we drove back through the forest we decided that next visit to Skiathos has to include a forest exploration; it’s beautiful, lots of tracks to get lost in and has the same peacefulness as up at the Monastery. En route back to the hotel we stopped at Kolios beach for a beer in the taverna but it had already shut up shop for the day (about 6.30pm). We came back to the hotel and had a swift beer by the pool before we headed off to return the quad and have one final night in town. The quad guy had shut up shop too but the bar next door kindly rang him and he was with us within 5 mins. To thank the bar man we had another beer in his place, and since it was getting late we decided on a gyros. Back to where we began our holiday, we went to Yianni’s Place on the balcony! Had a lovely gyros and watched the comings and goings of the main street for a bit, then continued up the street, dropping into a few of the shops, just browsing (OH hates shopping). Went to the Old Port House bar for one, then down to King & Queen for more than one. Having a lovely time, so much so we missed the last bus so had another drink and then headed for the taxi stand. The speediest driving we have experienced on the island this year, frightening at times, had us back in Kanapitsa quick smart and off to bed.
Final Day Woke early with a twinge of a hangover 🙈. Why oh why do I do it!? Finished my packing after a quick breakfast of yoghurt at the hotel. We sat in the foyer of the hotel drinking the copious amount of water we had accumulated in the fridge over the last 14 days, until we decided on a late lunch at the Kanapitsa taverna, it was very busy down there and I had a lovely tuna sandwich, it hit the spot perfectly. On the walk back up the hill, the strong smell of the pine trees hit me, they were particularly pungent today for whatever reason. Returned to our pool for an hour or so and then dressed more appropriately for the journey home. It was then we noticed our cases hadn’t been collected by the luggage truck, because the lady on reception had shown us the wrong place for the luggage to be left! There was nothing we could do so decided if the tourist collection bus wasn’t able to take them we would take a taxi to the airport. There was no problem taking the bags on the mini bus, even though we had a few stops and by the time we were at the airport, all seats were taken - the rep informed us we were first to arrive and indeed we were 3rd in through the airport doors and with 3 TUI desks open, walked straight to the counter - absolutely hassle free; and since this was our first Tuesday travel day after years of Fridays, the calmness and quietness of the airport shocked us. The new departure facility is much improved from previously, I hardly recognised it! There was a tourist official doing a survey of the departure process and asked the OH to partake; I guess they’re proud of their new airport 😄 and want to brag a little, and why not! Took off at 7.40pm, pretty prompt and a message from the pilot informed us that there would be no stop over to refuel, he had been flying to and from Skiathos for 20 odd years and the 757 was up to the job of getting us home without the need for a refuelling stop - great news! A little bumpy in places as the pilot told us they couldn’t climb away from the clouds until they had crossed the Macedonian border - not sure why. Actually it was pretty bumpy after Macedonia too ☹️ Arrived in Birmingham ahead of schedule at 8.58pm (apologies to those reading who had a nightmare journey home), more than ready for bed - I’m not up to a late one tonight! Passport control was quick, but then ladies’ loos in the arrival hall were closed for some problem and so all those needing a wee had to queue for the 1 disabled toilet available but I didn’t mind as the bag carousel hadn’t started yet. Bags started appearing on the carousel at 9.30, mine was first off 😀, then OH’s bag was somewhere in the middle. Out to the outside world at 9.40pm, not bad at all! Got home at 11.25pm. That’s all for 2019, loved every second of it. Now, it’s over to you Dennis!