Saturday, June 16, 2007

Our Visit to Mykonos (Part 1)

Our itinerary in May and June includes stops to many of the Greek Islands. So, for a few fleeting moments, we get to feel like Young, Big Time, Island Hopping, Trust Fund Having, Money Bleeding Sophisticates. The Greek Island that attracts the majority of the aforementioned demographic is Mykonos. The tiny island has a population of only 15,000 but attracts over 800,000 visitors a year.

I’m pretty sure Mykonos is past its glory days of the 1960s, when it was a tucked away haven for the beautiful celebrities and debutantes to live it up as they please. I can’t picture Twiggy and Edie Sedgwick drinking in designer miniskirts in front of what is now “Themostopolis’ Internet CafĂ© and Gyro Shop” or Rock Hudson trying to keep his secret safe by tip-toeing into one of the many subtly-named clubs like “Ramrod” or “Every Guy in Here is A Gay.”

But, like we’ve discovered in most places where many have gone before us, if you make the effort and dig a little deeper, Mykonos is still a wondrous place. It is said that the roads of Mykonos were designed to confuse pirates, so it is no surprise that they are winding and curvy and poorly labeled.
You have to take these roads to get to the good stuff past the port, like the beaches and little resorts, but to walk it is very time-consuming and uncomfortable.

Cody, Steve and I decided to explore Mykonos on ATVs. We rented four-wheelers (Steve and I on one, Cody on another, helmets on all three of us) in the morning and began zipping around the island.

Yes, I rode a four-wheeler. I didn’t drive because I of course do not know how to drive since I am a city rat. And it was really fun. We rode through the hills and farms of Mykonos, in awe of the mountains and the white building with bright blue roofs and all the animals just hanging out in pastures along the roadside.

We didn’t have a destination in mind, so when we got a bit famished, we pulled off at a little resort - which I’m sure is packed during high season. But that day it was empty, and we ate amazing Greek food in a beautiful garden.
A family owned the place, so the young daughter was riding her bike around us, the men were playing cards, and cats sniffed about. It was right on one of the main beaches in Mykonos as well, so we were able to dip our toes in the sea while our bellies went to work on our meal.

The two main beaches on Mykonos are Paradise Beach and, wait for it, Super Paradise Beach.
Super Paradise Beach is the hipster beach and we wanted to go there just to see it, but not to drink a 16 Euro Corona which as about the cheapest thing at the bar.

It is a pretty ridiculous place, and we were there very early in the afternoon. It is a mostly Gay, nude beach, but no one was really out and about yet. There is a full on grotto by the bar, complete with a sizeable pool, marble dance floor, and an extravagant DJ booth. It is more like Super We’re All On Ecstasy Paradise Beach.

Since neither Cody nor Steve nor I felt like starting a rave at 1 in the afternoon,
we bid adieu to Super Paradise and hopped on out ATVs and began the ascent up the very steep hill that we had traveled down to get to the beach.

We were worried about Cody’s vehicle since it was having trouble making it on flat roads and went no faster than about 5 miles an hour. Hence, Steve and I drove behind him to make sure he didn’t start to slide down the hill.

And he didn’t. Cody’s little feeble bike did just fine. In fact, Cody was able to push OUR bike when it began to stall at the top of the hill. In fact, Cody was able to push two grown people with almost 12 feet of height between them for a good couple of minutes.

In fact, Cody was able to watch, powerless, as we lost control, as our bike lost all brake power, and as we began to roll rapidly down the steep hill.


Irene said...

I love this!!

Rob said...

Going to Mykonos in a few weeks. Loved your ATV story....we will be hopping on a few now.