So my holidays are over and I'm back to work, and reality, with a bang.
Actually though, two weeks was a long break. It's funny how the rituals of daily life are quickly emptied from the mind and instead new routines are formed. There's the thrice-daily SPF applications, spritzing and rubbing every part of my fair skin. Deciding where to eat lunch, what cocktail to drink, the choice between pool or beach -- the familiar stresses of home are replaced with a much simpler life.
I had an amazing time, a good break that was long overdue. However, despite the beautiful scenery, fantastic food and great memories, there's one thing I don't miss too much now that I'm home -- the heat. I'm not made for higher temperatures. Sure, I enjoyed the balmy evenings and bright mornings, but for every time I enjoyed finding just the right spot between sun and shade, there was a sweltering, stifling moment to compete with it.
Don't get me wrong, I pretty much knew this before I went and I will continue to travel to hotter climes in the future, but a few weeks is enough. The sticky heaviness of the dead heat, the waiter at our poolside bar moving at a snail's pace during a two-day heat wave that peaked at 36C (I've been to Vegas and Barcelona in August and these two days topped both). My hair expanded to a parched, unmanageable mess. My gradually developing glow was marred by blotched, sweaty skin and my face was permanently red.
Why, I wondered, were other holidaymakers not also reduced to a crimson, frizzed mess like me? I got sunburnt on some random parts I had missed with the sun block. I had a mysterious watery eye which was itchy and annoying (I convinced myself I had burnt my retina), and to top it all, I was attacked en masse by mosquitoes one night. I woke up to find 21 swollen red lumps decorating my legs and arms, ensuring I would have to dine out that night looking like a leper.
Thankfully the bites went down quite quickly and the putrid repellent cream prevented any further attacks.
Then the heat went back to 30, the norm for June, and I was okay again. The print of my magazines still dissolved against my sun-creamed legs but with a shady bar never too far away I resumed full enjoyment of my holiday. I would definitely go back to Greece. Certain islands were the most beautiful places I've ever visited and I would highly recommend it.
Just don't ask me to live there!