28 March, 2014

CYPRUS, PART II

We're home safe and sound after a long but uneventful journey home. We all hated to leave the warmth and sunshine, and I especially miss friendly strangers loving on our babies without even asking, but we are all happy to be home. Sebastian and Katharina missed their toys and Philippa was so happy to have her bed back she slept until 11am.

First morning in Cyprus Peter caught a baby lizard in the house and they put it in a glass on the kitchen counter. I can’t help but feel so overwhelmed with gratitude when I think of him— making this holiday possible for us, seeing how badly each and every one of us needed some rejuvenation. 



We piled into the car not having plans of a destination, but the sea was on everyone’s minds.  We packed a loaf of homemade bread purchased from a market, hummus, local cucumbers and oranges — the sweetest, juiciest oranges we have ever, ever had -- a wheel of cheese, and a box of some sort of tahini pastries, and we drove. 

Past a pasture of grazing goats through another village, we found a rocky beach off the beaten path and the kids swam. Peter and I laid on a blanket in the sun, relishing the fact that the littles were old enough to enjoy the beach and young enough to not run neck-deep. I thanked them all for being my family.



Sebastian announced that he peed in the Mediterranean and Katharina couldn’t stop squealing “this is so much fun!” There isn’t anything Katharina has wanted more than to swim in that Mediterranean naked, so naked she did swim. I think she belongs at the beach, the little Amphitrite.

We headed home for the littles to catch up on the naps they hadn't had for four days, and Peter and I sunned ourselves on the terrace in swimwear for optimal D-absorption.


Until the weekend, we were the only ones staying in the cluster of 7 villas on the hill at the end of the village Kormakitis. Quiet and remote and no high-rise buildings or traffic anywhere even near, we only heard birds and the occasional Turkish Cypriot woman shouting for her child. 

Both the Greek and Turkish Cypriot people were very friendly and welcoming, and especially kind to children. All week long strangers would squat with their arms stretched out asking one of our children to run to them for a squeeze, young men volunteered kisses for the girls everywhere we went, and the young people found their blue eyes and blonde hair comical.

Even on the plane ride you could pick out the Cyprus locals-- without question, picking up the children from their airplane seats and squeezing their cheeks tight shouting endearing words in Greek.

Every morning a shepherd walked his flock up the hill outside our kitchen window, past the pool and over the mountain. 


The littles were in heaven. As if speeding up and down narrow winding mountain roads in a car that wasn't our own wasn't enough excitement, they were often heard talking to each other, “We in Cyprus! We are!!” Peter and I agree we'd never seen them so happy before.

One night we set off to find a market where we could stock up on staples. We drove about half an hour along the coast and found a place, where the baker quickly pulled Katharina behind the counter and stuffed a chocolate pastry in her mouth. 

The produce section was a separate shop off the side, and all four walls of the hut-like building were stacked with wooden produce crates, pile upon pile of locally grown fruits and vegetables. We bought green-top carrots, snap peas, cucumbers, bell peppers (the crunchiest and sweetest peppers I have tasted), grapes, bananas, and two different round foreign-looking things, which I assumed were fruits.


The old man that owns six of the villas on the hill invited us to move to Kormakitis permanently. He is looking for a young couple to run his wine bar in the village and we half considered except that we're sure salary for running a wine bar in Cyprus would send Sallie Mae after us in no time.



On a separate beach day we drove our tiny 2-wheel-drive car on rocky dirt paths that were meant for jeeps and trucks to find a remote, white-sand beach. An intended five-minute drive turned into 55 minutes of hills and giggles, but we found the beach and it was worth every bump and bottom-out. We all swam naked and shared some exotic fruit on the trip back up the mountain; I'm so impressed Peter got us back up all in one piece.


More on our trip throughout this week. I promise not to do a 9-part series, but there are more photos to come. 

Happy Friday!

6 comments:

  1. Your pictures are gorgeous, you have a gift. Can't wait to see more!

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  2. Your pictures are stunning and it's wonderful that you were invited to move to Kormakitis permanently. Any chance you may in the future take the old man up on his offer?

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    1. Thank you! Cyprus was beautiful, but sadly we don't see a move there in our near future. Thanks for stopping by!

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  3. You should definitely consider moving there! I know I would! Loved, loved, loved the flowers by the way!

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  4. I've read this post about 3 times. The pictures are all so beautiful! (You know that one of the three of them naked is my favorite!) Can't wait for more.

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