Friday, 13 April 2012

To Blogg or not to Blogg

Well, here we are. This is what happens when everyone tells you Facebook, Twitter, Google +, Trip Advisor, Flickr, Tumbler, Stumble Upon (I'm sure I left some out) aren't good enough to stay "connected". This has always fascinated me as I'm usually doing something on the computer for 8 plus hours a day. My question is, "How much more connected do i need to be?" Personally I'd rather be out there with a group giving a tour and having a few laughs.

 I realize we're a little late, but I feel we've had some pretty good excuses up until this point. Honestly, with so much work to do and so many things to keep up with its obvious why I've been putting off this "Blog thing" for so long. That's right, I said, "Blog thing" because even as I'm writing this I have no idea where it will go and who will see it (if any one at all) after I click "publish". I don't even know if the word "blog" is supposed to be capitalized or if it has one "g" or two. I suppose as time goes by I'll figure it out, and I guess if things get too complicated I could just hand this little blog project over to one of our competent staff members and call it "extra credit".

Originally I tried to do just that, hand it off to someone else, someone with more time (Jim), but after speaking with so many people about this they've all kind of unknowingly agreed that a company Blog(g) is probably more personal and meaningful when its from the owner, especially if he's writing it and if its in his own words (wait for laughter).

Now that its Easter in Greece and things are just quite enough in the office I was thinking that now is probably the best time to start blogging. But there are other reasons why I'm interested, if not more compelled, in getting a blog going, things that never crossed my mind before. Blogs can actually help others when their planning their trip to Greece! Go figure. Yannis, one of our tour operators, was so kind to point this out to me without giving me a dumb look. He was telling me that by writing about my personal misadventures in Greece and providing links and tips I can actually help those that are doing a little research before they come over, a job I always thought were best suited for Wikipedia, Trip Advisor and Matt Barrett, which they are. But why not one more? Every bit helps doesn't it? Yannis was right when he said people like choices and really appreciate this kind of help when they're getting ready to travel abroad. Thanks Yannis, you may just actually get a day off this Summer :)

Well, its my sincere hope that by starting this blog I can help a few people along the way. I've been to so many places in, and outside, of Greece that I really would like to share my experiences and advice. I can honestly say that I know from first hand experience how important advice can be. When thinking about this I usually go back in time, to the time I was backpacking through Europe. What an amazing trip! What amazing people I met along the way! I think most of my fond memories of that trip would have never been if it were not for those fellow travelers I met along the way who were happy to share their "been there, done that" experiences with me. A lot of that advice really helped me to maximize my time. Of course there was some bad advice too, but that's another story. All I can say is that I'll do my best in the advice department folks.

The other reason I chose to start this blog at this time particular time is because my wife and I decided, more so she decided for me, that it would be nice to get away from the city of Athens for a little while. To tell you the truth now is the time that we're getting busy and I've been in this "work, work" frame of mind that I initially didn't have any desire to leave, but eventually I caved into her demands. She had an excellent trick of holding up our 16 month old son like a puppet and saying in a baby-like voice, "Daddy I want to go." Now that we're leaving I feel good about the decision she made for us. Thanks. One relief is that we have a capable and excellent team back at the office who can handle whatever comes their way, so yes folks we're still open and operating. I'll also have the trusty iphone attached to my hip, so if worse comes to worse I'll be accessible...or will I?

I say this jokingly, but I'm not sure how the connection will be where we plan to go. The plan is to see a beautiful, and little known area called Pelion. One of the main reasons for choosing Pelion is that its only about a 4 hour drive from Athens, which isn't so bad when you've got an energetic baby boy trying to get out of his high-tech car seat (trust me, he'll figure a way out). Now that the Spring flowers are out and the fields by the lone highways are covered with the red hue of poppies I'm expecting we'll find some nice places to stop and play.

As I've done a little reading, and have quizzed some of our staff and locals, about Pelion I've discovered that everyone says the same thing about this area, that its "amazing" and "beautiful". Not that this is something new to hear when people are talking about Greece, but because I haven't heard one negative comment about the place! Not even, "I liked it but there were a lot of tourist." I should probably interject here and say, there's a reason why some places have a lot of tourist, and that reason is because they have something you should see, something unique and only found in that one location. Anyway, after hearing all this good stuff about Pelion and reading about stone bridges, mountainside villages, seaside taverns, forest and even a train ride through the less explored areas has got me reeling with excitement.

So, today is what the Greeks refer to as "Big Friday" (Friday the 13th of all days) and we'll be off to Pelion on "Big Saturday". I'm hoping to have enough time between church events, lamb roasts, wine, beautiful sites and most importantly family time to keep everyone up-to-date on how our little Easter odyssey is going. Until then, Kalo Pasxa (Happy Easter)!

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