The Great Escape


At the suggestion of a getaway, I’ll be the first to say an eager “yes” before I’ve had time to think of your average set of obstructions: time, money, availability. It was, therefore, not surprising that I said yes to a camping offer out in the wild, middle-of-nowhere (read: no amenities) unknown, last week. To begin with, in a suspicious twist of fate, it seemed to appease my usual concerns; I had plenty of time, was fully available and this was as low budget as you get. A dirt cheap getaway, with the emphasis on dirt, mind you.

I am what you might call an outdoor queen. Confused? Let me clarify. I belong to that (large, if you ask me) group of girls who truly enjoys the idea of being out in nature and rediscovering the simpler things in life. I love all of that side of camping. I don’t even mind sleeping on the floor, in a sleeping bag and personally consider inflatable mattresses for softies. But let’s face it, the term is an oxymoron if I ever heard one.

And I explain.

Just the thought of venturing out in the open whenever nature calls makes me shudder. I break into a sweat of paranoia which is enough to make me seriously reduce my liquid intake to avoid nature confrontations of the sort. And the dirt? Armed with my little bottle of antibacterial gel that I dab on my hands every few minutes, I feel like David trying to battle Goliath with nothing more than the power of positive thinking. But when positive thinking is all you’ve got, you keep thinking of the half-full glass that can’t become half empty because that’s serious trouble that requires a flashlight and a good sense of direction.

Fellow outdoor queens, come out and celebrate your innate desire to be a civilized version of Jane. Rejoice in the power of soap and washbasins and remember, on your next exploration outing to take appropriate footwear. I arrived at the site only to discover that my sneakers were nowhere to be found (I had of course arrived wearing sandals). By night-time, I looked like a misplaced tourist in green socks and leather sandals. It was funny, for some. It seemed funny to me too, until I discovered that my sought-after shoes were safely stowed in a neighboring tent and made a guest appearance as discarded objects the next morning. Sure, it wasn’t this outdoor queen’s most glorious moment, but it kept those bugs away.

And that’s what I call survival.

Math Monday

math monday

math monday

The numbers came flowing in this week, mostly in the negative. I rummaged through my adolescent physics binder and came across this familiar formula:

disappointment + lack of motivation = major deflation

Any angst-ridden teenager is familiar with this bleak aspect of things, but let me tell you, at 25+1 major deflation sets in quite comfortably. But I’m going ahead of myself. It’s Monday so let’s get down to the Math, shall we?

  • 137 is the number of photos I took this week.
  • 12 (or thereabouts) is the number of photos that ended up being good (Sam, you’re not the only one!)
  • 1 pair of new sandals this week! I simply fell in love. Don’t you just love them?
  • There is a catch (or not a good catch, you could say)

    There is a catch (or not a good catch, you could say)

  • 0.5 pair is OK. The clasp on the one sandal doesn’t work properly and the shop refuses to change the shoes or the faulty clasp. Aaaarrrgghhh!
  • 2 new books in the mail, both on nutrition. I am trying to take on a new eating lifestyle based on the food-combining diet. It makes sense and so far my stomach has calmed down. I’m a sensitive one.
  • 15 days until Berlin and Paris! Woohoo!
Straight out of Beverly Hills, it seems

Straight out of Beverly Hills, it seems

  • 6 days until our friend George comes to visit from Cyprus. We only found out today, as this was a surprise we were meant to find out through snail mail. That card was never sent, so thank you MSN.
  • 3 is the number of eggs I used in an attempt to make Eggs Benedict. Two worked out fine, but from the first one I only had the egg yolk left, which looked like babybel cheese by the time I was done. Great.
  • Our brunch yesterday: toast, tomato, avocado and one of the successful poached eggs!

    Our brunch yesterday: toast, tomato, avocado and one of the successful poached eggs!

  • 387.26 is how many Euros it would cost for me to be with my Mom and sister, who are having a wonderful reunion in Surrey right before graduation. I miss them so much, I actually checked for prices. Way over my non-existent budget.
  • 1 present ready and sent to Estella, of Star of the East, for the swap she’s organizing on her blog. I love mail!
A special surprise

A special surprise

  • 5 wasps located inside our balcony rail. How? Well part of it had rusted and so they sneaked in and were making a nest. Spotted them today and freaked out! I would have had a photo for this, if I weren’t too scared to go near the place.
  • 10 bottle caps saved for a special project I’m working on. Soon to be revealed, hopefully.
I have this exact same door in a watercolor painting I bought 2 years ago. I wonder if it's from Chania originally.

I have this exact same door in a watercolor painting I bought 2 years ago. I wonder if it's from Chania originally.

  • 1,853 words on the blog this week!

How was your week in numbers?

Summertime and the living is easy

Jewelry, Musings

Ok, so it’s technically not summer yet — we’re still a week or so away from entering the summer month triad. Yeah, sure, go ahead and convince me that with 30 ℃ there’s still a week left until summer. I won’t buy that. It’s here — I can smell it, feel it and even sweat it. Out come the sandals and dresses, the summer hats and sunscreens and bring on the ice, will you please? It’s boiling out here.

But out here, is where I want to be. I find it hard staying indoors when the weather is treating me to this abundance of sunlight. Cleaning our relatively big veranda was a task we’ve been postponing for a few weeks, but with mercury rising, Saturday had us doing the unavoidable. And today, I’ve been doing nothing more than laze around outside, drinking my coffee, reading my book and enjoying the evening breeze.

My summer table

On the veranda, where I pretend I'm at a coffee shop

I couldn’t even bring myself to stay indoors and work on my little beading corner, even though I really wanted to create today. Solution: move the beads outside and create to my heart’s content.

Last night, on a walk down Chania’s old harbor, I suddenly realized how buzzing every place was — so many tourists, so many locals out for a drink in the cool breeze of these early summer nights. The island is dressed in its summery persona already and I felt lucky to be living the island life, so close by the sea.

Inspired by these realizations, you won’t be surprised to see that the result of my beading efforts led me to island colors and beachy themes. Sea-shells definitely couldn’t be absent from these leg bracelets I made:

She wears seashells by the seashore

She wears seashells by the seashore

I will be listing these on Etsy as soon as I take some more photos on a beach location near me. I have to say, I’m in love with the colors, and I’m so glad it’s summer.

On a different note, the first plain bananas package has safely arrived at its destination. I will be mapping the plain bananas’ journey across the globe (though after much frustration, I’m still looking for a map to do this online – open to suggestions) with buyers’ pictures. It’s an open invitation to help me with the project and already the first item has been mapped. Thank you Gigi for the love and the photo. Plain Bananas loves you too.

Here’s where these earrings have gone:

(If you would like to see a map of this, you can always check my flickr account, which is the only place I have input this, so far).

plain bananas travels to Philadelphia

plain bananas travels to Philadelphia

The journey will continue.

Summer, welcome back.