Sore. It’s the only word that can describe how I feel today. I didn’t sleep well after injuring myself the day before. Yesterday, I took a day trip to the island of Aegina for a change of pace. I also wanted to get out on the open water on this trip. I decided that I would take a tour through AirBnB so I could meet other people, but much to my surprise, I was the only person who booked, so it was just me and the tour guide for the whole day. I was used to traveling along, but having to keep up a conversation with someone for 8+ hours was a bit challenging when it wasn’t what I expected to do. Nonetheless, it was a good day.
We arrive at the Port and promptly went to the bus station to buy our ticket to the other side of the island. We then proceeded to a coffee shop to get some caffeine and a pastry to start the day. Some things just hit the spot, and on a day like today, a cold Coca-cola and a tyropita (cheese pie) were just what did it for me. We jumped on the bus and began our journey up the hillside, weaving left and right through a road with many switchbacks and curves, making us a little squeezy. Our destination was to reach the Temple of Aphaea at the top.
Once we reached the temple and got off the bus, my tour guide was feeling very sick from the ride, so we had to take a break. After a while, we were ready to go into the archaeological site. It looked like a mini version of the Parthenon, and it was well preserved. The stories surrounding the woman Aphaea that the temple was built for has a messy history with many different versions of her story being shared. One detail that seems to be the same in all versions was that she threw herself into the ocean to get away from a powerful man on another island. I could relate. I thought how tragic it would be to go down in history for a moment of despair and then have it be retold for thousands of years? Think of all the stories from the past that were probably less dramatic than we now tell them.
After visiting the temple, we walked down the hillside on a dirt road to get to the beach. It was a shortcut designated for pedestrians because the road was windy, and one could easily be hit if a driver wasn’t paying attention. We talked a bit about family and traveling as we made our way down the hill. It was rather steep, but there was a solid sheet of rock below so our sneakers could grasp the surface. As I was thinking this, I stepped on some loose dirt, and my right foot skid as my left foot planted, and I did a scissor split and slid a few feet on my shin. Ouch is an understatement.
When I got up, my legs trembled a bit. Luckily I have been stretching the past few weeks every morning, so I didn’t pull any muscles. I dusted myself off and reassured my tour guide that I was ok, as she seemed more traumatized by the experience than I was. Once we got to the ocean, it took me minutes to strip down and jump in the water, and my leg stung a bit when it hit the water, but it was nice to cool down after the hike down the hill.
It’s nice to visit new places and feel a bit of adventure. We will always have those memories to look back on, and in this case, I may also have a nice scar to remind of me of the good times as well.