Oh Dennis - you look quite shocked in the top photo ~ and no wonder! You were very lucky to get away without more serious injuries .... but not very lucky to be hit by that nut-job!! Hope the nurse is gentle with you xx
Dennis not going to hit the "like" button😧 Can't begin to imagine the shock for both of you 😖 Let alone the pain 🤢 and later anger 😡 Hope he gets what he deserves through the court Wishing you well in your recovery. Tre & John
Well, at last I am going to try and complete my feedback for this holiday. It won't be easy after being flattened on the last day, so much flies out of your mind in those circumstances. But I shall try and you can all offer me great sympathy and best wishes (I just wish you'd all just club together and get a new webcam up on the clock tower instead!).
So, Saturday 9th July, whose original report was consigned by the WI-FI monster somewhere into the mists of pixels and stuff which comprise the www thing. It really was quite a boring day, nothing happening really. So I just reported on the beach entertainments. As we swim ever so gently up and down Troulos beach at 7:30am, the tourists start to arrive. We are well amused by the sly way they unhurriedly rush to get the absolute perfect bed of their choice. Some go for the end ones in a block, or fronting the sea, or at the back, or in the centre. Nothing new about them, it's getting boring really.
But this year we have had amusing variations. The Blue man (swimming cozzie) comes probably from La Luna - he enters the beach from that end - and comes to the block of beds outside the Taverna Troulos. We leave our towel and stuff in the gap between those two blocks. He gets the two end ones fronting the sea. Then he changes one for one of the others, drags it out, replaces it with another and drags the original to where the other came from. He does this every morning, so I am bemused - does he suffer the attentions of a phantom bed swapper during the night? Or does he wear out the bed he uses during the day? He takes quite some time to arrange the beds, then dresses them correctly with the towels and hangs his accoutrements from the hook under the umbrella lid. Then off he goes to get his breakfast coffee - there's not a sign of anybody for the second bed, but giving him the benefit of the doubt, I guess somebody will come along later. Once back bringing his coffee, he has to adjust his bed. The block of beds is about 10 to 15 feet from the water's edge, a comfortable border for those passing along the beach. But he drags his bed out and positions it in the middle of the border, parallel to the sea and stretches out on it in the sunshine. There's as much space between him and the sea as there is between him and the beds. To pass without invading his "space" (i.e. not kicking sand on him) takes a conscious diversion (except that he is entirely unconscious of it!).
Next come the pensioners. A mature couple who go to the second block of beds and choose two right in the middle of the row closest to the sea. For some reason, the phantom bed swapper has been at it here too. They like two of the wooden ones and always choose a pair comprising one wooden and one metal, even though the very next pair are both wooden, and proceed to drag away the metal one and drag into its place a wooden one, sometimes even from the pair next door. Y'know, there's got to be an interesting story about all these bed swappers, but I shall never know it.
There was a sprinty girl during the first half of our holiday. Gentle trot for some distance, then serious hard sprint, more trot to the end. Turn round and do it again. And I mean SERIOUS sprint, smashing her feet down and thrashing her arms, wearing a top that doesn't jounce and bottoms that are snug, square and sensible, a sprint that lasts longer than I can hold my breath.
She replaced the swimming girl who went out from the beach into the shipping lanes and swam up and down almost at the limit of our vision, just this side of the big rocky island, but far enough out to almpost disappear. How many miles she swam is beyond calculation, several times back and forth from the La Luna headland right past the rocky outcrop at the other end.
And during all this, we politely and without company swim gently up and down, from the flood trench dug down at the entrance road to the orange buoys for the boat man - fifth or sixth buoy out depending on the tide, so that we can both put a toe on the bottom if we feel the need. We make sure the boat man refuels his boats and watch his dog as it wags approval, concern, supervision from the shore and does a few excited spins of celebration when it goes well.
Off to town to pick up Vera's ring. It was being enlarged at Pan Jewellers, but wasn't ready when we got there, so after our sandwiches and frappés and beers at Creperie Plateia, we went down into town to get some breadsticks for Vera. From the little supermarlket next door to No Name. Where Vera missed her footing on the entrance step and hit the floor flat and hard. Three of us eventually picked her up when she had recovered enough to let us do it, and the shopkeeper gave her a chair and a bottle of water. He and two women were so really concerned for her. When she managed to say that all she had come for was the breadsticks, one of the women went and got them for her. The shopkeeper accepted payment for the breadsticks, but refused money for the water. Vera was so distressed and in pain from it that we went straight back to Troulos. She insisted on an afternoon swim and claimed it helped. She wasn't sure if she had cracked a rib, but we didn't try for a doctor as we knew there's nothing they can do for ribs - they don't even bandage them these days do they?
Monday 10th a day of recuperation for Vera, although she still insisted on the dawn swim and said it helped a lot.
First day of the Jimny hire. Vera insisted again on the early morning swim and said it helped. As we came back from the dawn swim a little early to be back, showered and ready for the jeep delivery, the jeep man on a scooter saw us at the end of the beach road and offered us a lift back in his colleague's car, but we declined with wet costumes. However, we did agree I'd go into the jeep shop when we were ready, as opposed to him coming across at 9am.
And so we got our Jimny. Oh Lordy, a posh one, green with only one gearstick, the second one being replaced by a button for selecting 4 wheel drive! I had read elsewhere that when a Jimny has electronic 4WD selection, it also has air conditioning, but I couldn't find a button or dial for that. It does have a display on the instrument panel for the fuel remaining and it said 4Litres. That's enough to do quite a distance on Skiathos island, so off we went. On the way into town, I decided we'd have an adventure and turned off onto the Vromolimnos road to tour the Kanapitsa headland. Except I took the wrong road and instead went to tour the car park of the Skiathos Blu hotel. Nice little drive, albeit somewhat bumpy. I felt it may not be the normal entrance road and wondered about finding an exit onto the Kanapitsa road, but chickened out for fear of driving through their service yard, went back where we came from. There are some seriously posh villas on that road.
Off to Xanemos beach for a desperately needed cold wet something, then the back road around the airport to see what was happening. We saw a Thomas Cooke come in from Scandinavia and later the British Airways flight from London City Airport. A smallish aircraft which slowed so well that it was able to pull off into the apron without going to the end of the runway.
Up at Platanos Taverna, we eagerly anticipated an Omelette Platanos, which I ordered for both of us and because I had forgotten the size of the omelettes, I also ordered a Greek salad between us. Absolutely delicious, but a great to eat it all!! Here I found my first Amstel Free. I'd seen a roadside advert for them, alcohol free Amstel and thought I'd try them. It was terrific and I had two! It has a completely different flavour, I would say nutty, but then I'm no expert. But I'll certainly have it again in September.
A gentle return via the unsurfaced road past Olive Thea, down into Agia Paraskevi. Without recent rainfall, the road was quite decent. Last September it was quite grim!
On Wednesday 12th July we drove the long way round to Asselinos beach - down to Koukounaries, then up around the coast roads past Eleni beach and others. The descent to the Asselinos road was the usual mountain road, but we didn't come out onto that road, rather onto the road from Troulos before the Asselinos turnoff. Last September I had turned left at the fire engine watch station (that's just a place they park waiting for mountain fires) and descended to the Asselinos road itself, coming to it past the sort of junk yard or farmyard perhaps, a bity more tricky driving. In the taverna, it was a pleasure to be greeted by friendly staff we know - former Salt and Pepper boys, very likeable.
Then a leisurely drive to Ligaries Taverna for their excellent Greek salad - it comes with the largest lump of feta you can imagine. Here too they had Amstel Free, so I was happy as a lark, swigging what looks like the hard stuff and making me out to be a real man!
I say it every time we are in Skiathos - the fruit and veg are completely different, they all taste like they've been injected and soaked in whatever flavour they have, the tomatoes are juicy and flavoursome, so much so that I'll even put up with getting seeds under my plastic teeth! So the Ligaries Greek salad is to die for, and they had terrific bread to go with it. Many years ago, when I was much poorer, travelling solo I used to go into a little village taverna and order a Feta and bread. It would come as a good sized lump, with a little sprinkle of oregano, a few olives and oil. I always poured extra oil to dip my bread and I have never lost my pleasure for doing that.
For our penultimate night, we ate at Vareli Taverna and both chose Lamb Chops with mint sauce as recommended by someone who shall be ignored for culinary recommendations in future. It was tasty, but my plastic teeth were entirely unable to deal with them and it's a sad thing to be cutting lamb chops into mince sized pieces! I should have know better, because my teeth have never been successful with chops!
Thursday 13th our final day. Nothing special, just tie it all off. Sandwich at Plateia, then collect Vera's ring from Pan, wish farewell and see you again in September to one or two shops, quick drink at the Bourtzi and Bob's yer Uncle.
When the Pan Jewellery man brought out Vera's ring, we both gasped and marvelled out loud at how clean and sparkling it looked. After a few grunts, he said it was actually a new ring. He had mislaid the original (hence it hadn't been ready last weekend) and after hunting high and low without success, he had got her a new one! And he only charged her the €25 he had quoted for the enlarging. On reflection, I suppose that's what he owed her, but he was honest enough to come up and say so and we were impressed. We've been going in there for several years, always with satisfaction, and we've recommended him to others including a Greek lady, all of whom expressed satisfaction and gratitude. So I suppose what goes around comes around or summat.
So, meander off to say a few farewells, and have a last drink at the Bourtzi. Our last meander was to the dress shop in the narrow road parallel to Papadiamantis, at the bottom opposite the ferry. Whilst we were looking at dresses in the doorway, quite without warning I found myself smacked to the floor with a genuine pain in my legs. I found I had been clattered by a motorbike, whose rider was bent over trying to hold my leg together. I've already told the story elsewhere, so I won't labour it here. I finished up having an exciting bluelight ride to the hospital, 12 stitches in my right leg, three in the other and a bandage on my big toe. Followed by a ride in a police car to the station to make a statement, where they informed me the biker was unlicensed and VERY drunk - the limit is 25 and he'd blown 150. And did I want him to go to court? I said yes because it's alcohol - surprised they asked me because here in UK, the police would have taken a statement and then taken him to court themselves.
A bright light in all this was the support we got from Villa Maria owners Angela and Kostas - Angela phoned Kostas to come to the hospital to support Vera who was shuddering with shock, then she brought my passport to meet the police car at Akropolis. They already have a well deserved reputation for helping guests in difficulties and this totally reinforced it.
Once back at Villa Maria (in the police car), Kostas went to get my prescription which included a tetanus injection - the kit, sort of DIY if there's nobody else there to do it. Angela volunteered Jackie the nurse from room 8 and whilst she took me into our room to do the deed, the rest of the ghoulish guests tried to crowd in through the door to record the process on their camera phones!
Next morning I tried the Thomson 24hr hotline to fix assistance at the airport, but it was too short notice and they told me to speak to the transfer coach rep. Who subsequently performed to perfection! Lucy helped Vera with the cases and got me a wheelchair, led us both to the front of the checkin and security queues and we were in departures before many had even got in the doorway of the airport. Airport staff loaded us through the tradesmens entrance to the plane by means of a rickety but successful uppy downy thing. Thomsons flight crew arranged similar for Birmingham and we were out on the M42 before it became a carpark! I discovered I could still drive - God knows what we'd have done if I couldn't!!
So we're home safe and sound (relatively I suppose). Vera's fall got relegated to the background, but she's still tender. I've already had two changes of dressings and another booked for Thursday. I just need to get it all properly cleared up for 8th September when we fly out again. Or maybe sooner so that I can go out and earn a crust.
But we DID enjoy our holiday and at the end, discovered that not only were we in the company of nice folk, but that everybody was kind to us in our moments of need. Thank you everybody.
Just one sour note - I've put on six pounds!!!!! That has to be down to the weather which was so hot it forced me onto double beers.
Forgot to say - we missed only three swims. Two on the day of the boat trip - leaves too early to nip down to the beach and gets back too late to get in the pool before a meal, then the pool swim on the afternoon of our last day, due to me being sewn together at the wrong time. Pretty pleased we achieved every swim we planned, bar one.