This is the story of one of those journeys which start out terrible and then turn around, thanks to the kindness of strangers, and end up as a marvelous experience.
I was on my way from the Greek island of Samos to Athens by ferry. It’s a long trip and, although I didn’t want to, I had to leave in Mykonos, spend the night and continue on the next day. On the other hand, I thought, Mykonos is famous for its nightlife and if I didn’t find a place where to stay, I might as well dance the night away and resume my voyage with the connecting ferry which was due to leave at 8am the next morning.
The ferry approached Mykonos, I saw the famous windmills in the distance and the entrance to the port.
And then… it went PAST!! 15 minutes later, another, brand new port came into view where the ferry finally pulled in. I hadn’t realized that Mykonos has two terminals and this one was a considerable distance from Mykonos town.
No problem, I thought, I’ll just take a taxi to the center of things. People disembarked, dispersed and I was left standing all on my own on a vast, totally empty parking lot.
There was a small terminal building, but not a soul in sight. No taxi, no buses, three parked cars and nothing else. It seemed that the only option was to walk what apeared like about 12km to Mykonos town, along a busy motorway in the blazing sun of a Greek early afternoon. Not an appealing prospect.
Then I remembeedr, that a fried had given me the number of a friend who supposedly owned a restaurant in Mykonos. Had I saved the number? Yes, I had. I called, he answered and, no questions asked, promised to come to my rescue. Never in my life have I seen a black Range Rover approach with such relief.
And that’s when the misery turned into utter bliss. This knight in a shining black Range Rover was the owner of one of the most beautiful restaurants I have ever been to.
He took me across the island to Ai Yianni Beach and the Hippie Fish restaurant and treated me like royalty.
For hours I was happily ensconced on comfortable cushions on the terrace which gives out directly to a lovely beach. I chatted to the owner, the waiters and fellow diners, went for a swim in the sea and was treated to one delicious dish after another. Among them one of my favorites, sea urchin which I first had tasted and loved in a tiny restaurant in the port of Marseille.
Hippie Fish is one of the oldest restaurants of modern times on the island of Mykonos. Its signature is to combine an utterly relaxing and laid back atmosphere at the beach with outstanding food and it fully accomplishes its aim.
As night fell, I enjoyed the stunning view of a silver sunset against the mythical island of Delos just across the water.
The Hip Disco opened and so did the Mixology Bar.
At midnight, the owner took me back to Mykonos town, found out that my connecting ferry did indeed leave from the old port, not the one where I was stranded and got me a room in a hotel nearby. At the time, it wasn’t open jet, but the Hippie Fish now also offers the ultimate in Hippie Chic at it own Hippie Chic Hotel.
How is that for a story about kindness from strangers?When we said good bye we weren’t strangers any more.
I later learned that taxis on Mykonos are, for some reason, a rarity. I heard from people who got stuck even at the airport and had to phone their hotel to send a car.
Everybody whizzes around on scooters, which, as there are next to no pavements and very narrow and winding streets, makes walking hazardous. Just so you know when visiting.