Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Arriving in Cyprus

We had Lufthansa again flying into Cyprus so we got to enjoy decent food and beer. This time, instead of screaming children, the plane was filled with Cypriots who at 9pm enjoy chatting. And chatting and chatting and chatting. So again, we didn't sleep at all. We arrived in Cyprus at 2am local time which is noon Seattle time. We got off the plane and boarded a bus that took us to the airport. It wasn't too hot or humid yet. We breezed through security and customs. Alexia's Aunt and cousin picked us and drove us to their house in the capitol, Nicosia, where we promptly fell asleep on this tiny, hard bed.

The next afternoon around 1pm we were woken up by Alexia's Aunt Dina barging into the room and speaking in heavily accented English telling us that lunch was ready and that we should get up and come downstairs. This really confused Ellis who had no idea what was going on, and was woken up by someone screaming in tongues, but didn't open his eyes until after the intruder had left to go serve lunch. We had lunch and then chilled out around the house recovering. You would not believe how amazing a shower felt after 72 hours of travelling. Btw, Frankfurt was in the middle of a heat-wave while we were there and it was in the mid 90's with very high humidity and no wind.

When we finally left the air-conditioned house, we were instantly melted by the sheer heat. That day was around 110 degrees in the shade with humidity. We quickly retreated and went back inside where there was air conditioning. That evening, Alexia's mom and brother showed up and we picked them up from the airport and rented the first of many cars that we would go through. We went back to the house and had Souvlagi (grilled meat in pitas) for dinner. It was yummy. After socializing for a bit, we went back to sleep.

The next day, we went to Protaras, a nice beach on the south-eastern shore of Cyprus. Here, the water is very clear and there are lots of rocks to look at life. We snorkeled, fed fish with sea urchins, and caught and released a small octopus. We would like to catch a big one sometime so Ellis can cook it. We spent about 4 hours swimming and then went out to eat at Romanzo Restaurant which has the best tahini sauce. We drove back to Nicosia, socialized again, and went to bed.

The next day we went swimming again at Makronisos, which is also on the south-eastern shore of Cyprus. There are clear waters and lots of life here too. We snorkeled, fed the fish again, and swam around for a few hours. See a pattern? Many of our days here are comprised of getting up and heading straight for the beach where we swim for hours and hunt things underwater, then go out for either Souvlagi or some restaurant for dinner and then head back to Dina's house for socializing and beer.

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