Another 4 am start today signifies my continuing and somewhat bad habit of booking early flights out of places as I identify the need to stop doing this, I am on no timeline and this trip is on my terms.
Today is the first anniversary of my fathers death and I am on my way to Kos and then Kalymnos to meet another climbing fanatic and Red River Gorge, KY companion Grace. This lady invited me to Greece to join her and some of her friends on a nine day climbing trip and I took great pleasure in saying yes as I thought of my good friend Glenn Short and his very clear and clean mission statement for my trip “Just Say Yes to Everything”. So I am HERE and it is NOW!
As I sit in 14D I am listening to a country singer named Chris Knight, whom I do like and have done for years. His song “One of the river’s Own” is on iTunes and as I write the first 9 words of this update the following lyrics are sung “ Two years ago dad passed away. I’ll never forget that mournful day.” I miss dad so much everyday but I know he is with me on this wonderful journey and he would be so excited that I am doing it.
Staring out the window looking down on the Dolomites of Italia I am awestruck at the beauty and the danger that is spread out below me as far as I can see. I have never seen a mountain range like this from the air; or at all for that matter……LOL. It is incredible and I am staring in wonderment.
Moving further towards our destination we fly over the snow capped mountains near Sophia; fast approaching Alexandroupolis. I look down at the ancient river basin and small villages and towns dot the landscape as the highways and back roads play “join the dots”.
The mountains dwarf the towns and the farm land is only identifiable by the colour of the soil and the symmetrical patterns that are rarely non-human. Nature has done some amazing things but rarely is symmetry one of them. Squares and rectangles cover the flatlands. Large lakes are still and create amazing contrast; no boats are visible. Out of the left hand side of the plane I spot the Ionian Sea as we are about to leave this beautiful coastline and head towards the island of Kos. I am very much looking forward to this trip, however solemn I may feel right now.