May 25th –
A quiet ride on the small, empty, relaxed island hopper to Amorgos, an island very close to my heart for its wild, broad shouldered, mountainous beauty, hair-raisingly lovely cliff-girt coast, the amazing Hozoviotissa monastery pasted like a white swallows nest into a cleft in the crags, with foaming peacock-coloured sea below, its open-hearted and clear-eyed islanders, sincere cooking, and cherished traditions. A quality island.
Aigialis, where the ferry docked, is a lovely port with its amphitheatre of white houses and bougainvillea spilling out of every crack. Hanging lanterns cast a warm glow in the dusk, the little restaurants in the narrow lanes are filled with chic French and Italians, while sinewy pensioners with walking poles wolf down huge quantities of good food, comparing adventures with the yachties who have made it this far.
Michali, the caretaker of Amorgos 1L, had fallen off a roof and broken his arm, but came to show us around the house. He must have fallen on his face as his glasses were so scratched I wondered how he could see where we were driving and he had a black eye as well. Amorgos 1L is the only private villa that we have found on the whole island that is of a decent size with pool and beach front. I spied it two years ago while eating in the nearby taverna in the picturesque bay of Aghios Pavlos. The Athenian couple next to us were having a “When Sally met Harry” moment over their lobster macaroni. The husband had stopped talking completely, and the wife was on the phone to her mother in Athens, moaning softly “Ach, mamma, this is so good, Ach mamma, this is so good.”
My husband and I watched fascinated, and then said to the waiter “Can we have whatever they are having too?” “It will take half and hour” he said. “Well, we will have their leftovers then.”
Of which there were of course none. Not even the lobster shell.