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Willover’s Travels Pt 5

Hi, did you miss me? Yeah I know, Dingo lite is fine, but sometimes you really need the full strength Dingo to clear the cobwebs, so here I yam.

Meanwhile back at the adventure….

After exploring every nook and cranny that the dirty old relics had to offer, I decided it was time to leave the bar next to retirement home and go check out the Acropolis. Yeah it was nice, but it would have been better if it had a roof, and maybe a bar or something. But hey! as they say… when in Athens eat moussaka, or something like that.

Speaking of moussaka, the food in Greece is surprisingly non-greasy, which seems to be a contradiction in terms.  Oh yeah, another thing I discovered is that in Greece they don’t call it a Greek salad, they just call it salad, go figure! But I’ll tell you, they really do have the best food there, lots of olives and feta, and the best lamb I’ve ever eaten. I’d love to tell you more, but unfortunately they had some pretty good retsina there too.

And so it was, that after spending about two weeks in Athens, I was ready to do some Island hopping. I bought a ticket on an overnight ferry to Iralkion (Crete) and was off once again. The thing about Greece that can come as a bit of a shock (actually this goes for most of Europe), is that there are real live peasants. And not just normal everyday bonehead morons that we call peasants because we don’t like to call them bonehead morons, but real honest to goodness peasants, just like the ones who chased Frankenstein’s monster over the cliff (I feel it necessary at this juncture, to point out that contrary to popular misconception, Frankenstein was the doctor, the monster was called…err…monster).

But having only spent time in Athens so far, I hadn’t actually seen any peasants. And truth be told, I was kinda wondering where they all were. At around 4:30 that afternoon, I found out. They were all on the ferry for Iralkion. This ferry had a restaurant and cabins (which I wish I had been smart enough to book, but I figured that since it was just for one night I’d go steerage), but they weren’t used by the masses (speaking of which, did I tell you the pope is on his way to Oz for World Youth Day…which lasts for a week! Man those catholics like their mysteries don’t they? A day that lasts for a week, now that’s really something!).  Where was I? Oh yeah on the ferry with the peasants. No, the great unwashed mass sat around the everywhere eating rock hard bread and cutting the cheese (which may have been fetta, but smelled more like blue vein). Those bastards were everywhere, and they all had at least a dozen kids, and most even had a few children!

The crossing went pretty smooth considering it was almost impossible to find a place to lie down for a nap, but eventually the sun came up, thankfully. As is usual for me in the morning, I needed to pee, so I found the toilets (which had been working just fine last night), much to my dismay,  I also found that they were all blocked up with nappies (diapers), toilet paper, newspapers, and just about anything else that could be used to wipe an arse. There were obviously those before me who found the toilets in the this state, because all the hand basins were backed up with the same detritus and in some cases crap (yes I mean actual crap).

Luckily it was only a couple of hours before we reached shore, so I managed to hold it. However, by the time we disembarked, I was starting to feel a bowel movement coming on. But you see, here was my dilemma…άνδρες… or… θήλυς…??

Yeah that’s right, in a display of parochialism that rivals America (sorry but you guys really are parochial), the Greeks in their infinite wisdom, chose to not only use Greek signage, also the Greek alphabet, rather than universal symbols on their toilets in a place that is a mecca for international tourism, so it wasn’t so much a matter of picking which one was male and which was female, no, the more pressing problem was to figure out which sign was indicating that it was actually a toilet! Yet even stranger, now that I think about it, was that they did use universal symbols on the boat, hmm must have been built somewhere else.

I walked for miles in search of relief, and the more I walked the more the turtle poked it’s head out. I was really starting to get desperate when I finally came across a building that was so putrid, so dank, so smelly, so crowded, that it couldn’t have possibly been anything other than a public shithouse. And thankfully it was.

But wait there’s more, I found something that I’d thought I left behind (no pun intended) in Asia, yes that’s right, I found something that whilst surprising, I was at least familiar.

I found one of these…

That’s a picture I took in Thailand, but it was the same sort of thing, which explained why those peasants on the boat didn’t know how to use flushing toilets!

Editor’s note: I wrote this in one go, and haven’t proofread it, so if it’s hard to understand, that’s why.

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27 Responses

  1. Yeah, another travel story!

    Ya know, I can read those Greek words, but I don’t know what they mean. My Greek vocabulary is pretty small at this point.

    I would love to go to Greece someday. Just thinking about it makes me very hungry and my favorite little hole in the wall Greek place over by Boeing has closed down. I knew there wasn’t any hope it would last much longer because it was just the one old guy who owned it and did everything. His lazy son would come sit around and eat, but he wasn’t interested in helping in any way or taking over the business. I’m going to go cry over my lost gyros and fried feta now.

  2. I love this post. There are so many parts that elicit smart ass (arse) comments.

    You would find northwest Indiana population very interesting as we have the regular parochial Americans, and we have large population of Greek-Americans.

    This statement, “great unwashed mass sat around the everywhere eating rock hard bread” seems somewhat ironic after mentioning the Catholics.

    “they all had at least a dozen kids, and most even had a few children!” is only one of your humorous observations.

    Finally, after the bathroom dialogue, I misread your editor’s note to say, “I wrote this on the go, and haven’t proofread it, so if it’s hard to understand, that’s why.” Silly me thinking that you meant that this was written while you were using the bathroom or on your way to the bathroom. Or perhaps, you had a great urgency to use the bathroom while writing this.

  3. Umm, that toilet thingy at the end (pun) why is the hole so small? Do you have to hit the spot or push it down yourself? Or is that just a number 1 jobby?

  4. I have days that last weeks all the time. I wonder if I’m really Catholic and I just don’t know it?

  5. I have enough nightmares without seeing a public toilet like THAT!!! Or hearing stories like THAT!!! I thought truck stops were bad enough!!! Maybe I’ll rethink selling the porta-potty with the camper…

    I think Molly’s interpretation of your “writing on the go” is hysterical!!!

  6. You wrote this on the “go”? hahahaha

  7. After reading this hilarious account of Greek loos I think it’s as well I’ve never visited!….heck I’m going to Corfu in Sept. hope they have better facilities there!! must go I’m feeling the urge……all this bathroom talk!

  8. Fascinating.

  9. Hooray, the Dingo! Don’t speak to me of public loos … After years of dreadful experiences in parts of rural Africa I finally mastered the art of peeing whilst hovering, which is VERY difficult, let me tell you.

    Seems wrong to speak of food after that but all the talk of lovely Greek goodies makes me need my breakfast.

  10. NICE! Im not even awake yet and thought I’d have coffee over here! Started off nice then TOO much information!

    Those tradies just turned up, the ones that were “supposed to come” last week. Thing is we booked another lot and were expecting them this morning! Thank god they are late (probably surfing) and they can finish the other half of the job! Amazingly enough the guy that just turned up was the one that wanted more than double what the other guy did. He’s now doing it for the same price!

    Oh as for the loo there. I think squatting over one of those had to beat the other mess!

  11. Jenni – I really love Greece.

    Molly – That was intentional (mass, masses, hard bread)

    Junebug – When you squat, the holes are supposed to line up.

    Melissa – Do you constantly feel guilty?

    Equoni – Keep the porta potty, it could come in handy.

    Karmyn – I don’t know why I waste my time on grammar when poop always gets a better response.

    Chris – Corfu is brilliant!

    Shades – Actually I think defecating is the word.

    Melissa – You must blog about the bog.

    Karisma – Definitely!

  12. sadly, i understood every word.

    nothing can rival the toilets in russia, though. as you know.

  13. It’s always a joy to read that someone’s shit was playing peek-a-boo. Made for a good story though. Added to the suspense.

    And I enjoyed your guest writer but am too lazy to click again to say so on those posts.

  14. You’re always hard to understand whether you roofpread or not.

    In the near future, I expect to see a post, “Hey Dude ! Where’s my blog?” (do you just give the keys to this place to anyone?)

  15. Whatever happened to the word “dingbat”?

  16. You know, I’d much rather hover over that thing than the outhouses or piles in Mexico!!! In fact, if it didn’t look so much like bathroom scales, I’d have it in the back field for emergency use. LOL!

    Blessings!
    Lacy

  17. Welcome back, enjoyed the post!

    Woohoo, I finally get to hear about Greece! Thank You!

    Athens and Crete–I’ve always wanted to visit both. Would love to hear more about Crete, if it fancies you.

  18. OH MY GOSH. Can we just assume that we should NOT assume that we all know all of the ins and outs of the great double you T? WT … I do apologize for my last comment in the Equoni post. I had NO IDEA THAT YOU ARE MARRIED. NONE AT ALL. I thought that you were introducing a new gal pal to us.

    Mea culpa.

    And youa culpa for not reminding the reader of what you assume would be obvious and for not giving a little more … like .. .obvious information.

    No worries here. And I wrote Equoni back explaining what a know nothing I am as far as WT’s blog goes. My apologies if anyone’s nose needs a chiropractic adjustment.

  19. I have dreams all the time that look just like your bathroom adventures in Greece! Usually it is because I have to go, but I am asleep, so I dream instead. Love the travel posts :-).

  20. I have an award for you at my place.

  21. Hey you, think yourself lucky you got an award from me. Being Australian, you just made it in there by the skin of your teeth.

  22. Ummm… You get the pun, right?

    Funny that you wrote your post “on the go” after posting a potty pic.

    This is my first vist to your blog (through WWoW). Nice!

  23. Just Me – Yes I do. What’s WWoW…anyone??

  24. “Weally weally outlandish Websites” ??

    I’m sure if there is such a listing, The Dingo qualifies!

  25. That was a wonderful post. Brought back lovely memories of frantic toilet searches and olfactory attacks. Looking forward to your visions of Crete.

    And thanks for your comment. Now I feel like an itty-bitty bug splat on the blog-o-sphere world…….. as opposed to just an itty-bitty splat, I suppose. 🙂

  26. WT, that was fabulous. I hate toilets with no flush. Those bogs on the boat sound a bit like the bogs at Glastonbury 93′ where someone chose to do a large turd on the seat, rather than in the hole. I didn’t ‘go’ all weekend.

  27. More about Greece!

    (My contractor is from Greece, moved here at 10. His grandparents had an honest-to-god couple hundred year old adobe compound w/ critters and a view of the Adriatic. Yes, and their very own beach w/ an ancient mulberry for shade. They might have been some of the peasants you saw)

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