“Travels to a Different Time “: : 2August2000: Samos, Greece: Bickering, Pale Chicken and Semi Raw Potatoes: Taxi Driver with Bum Ticker

At this small hotel there are often bursts of bickering. It started off in the morning very loud and heated. Over what the bickering is in honour of no idea. I have a limited Greek vocabulary. After breakfast off to the archeological museum in Vathi. Very small but some marble statues from 300-600 BC from the Ireon archeological site. Samos in those days was a recognized power trading in Egypt and Cyprus so there are many artifacts from these cultures in the museum. Interesting but after visiting Ephesus certainly not an overwhelming experience. For lunch a tiropita (cheese pie) and an orange juice followed by a coffee in the main square. Back to hotel for a brief siesta and more bickering over some pale looking chicken and not fully roasted potatoes. I understand “kota” is chicken and “patates” as potatoes. The argument was about the food not being cooked sufficiently. The chef was gesticulating wildly. Up at 16:00 in the blazing heat needing a Greek coffee to rejoin the world. At 17:00 off up the hills with a taxi driver with a bum ticker. Going to the monastery at Flammarion and the roads are treacherous. His ticker goes it would be a fatal trip over the edge! What a view of island and Turkey across the way. The monastery was austere and located in a pine forest. I managed to walk straight into a wall luckily only dazed with no cuts. We met a 75-year-old woman who for some tragic reason had been living in the monastery since she was 14.  As the taxi driver had a passenger to back down to Vathi in half an hour invited for a coffee and cookies at his home. The town is small and olive groves abound. No stores in sight. The passenger we picked up was Australian and what a ride down with spectacular views. Dinner was a souvlaki of top quality. I love it when they stuff the fries in the souvlaki. A small bottle of wine with a cap. Looks almost like an old beer bottle. Poor quality but cheaper than Coca-Cola.

Published by Robert K Stephen (CSW)

Robert K Stephen writes about food and drink, travel, and lifestyle issues. He is one of the few non-national writers to be certified as a wine specialist by the Society of Wine Educators, in Washington, DC. Robert was the first associate member of the Wine Writers’ Circle of Canada. He also holds a Mindfulness Certification from the University of Leiden and the University of Toronto. Be it Spanish cured meat, dried fruit, BBQ, or recycled bamboo place mats, Robert endeavours to escape the mundane, which is why he has established this publication. His motto is, "Have Story, Will Write."

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