Moonlight and paint in Karpathos

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Once upon a time there were three young ladies, who all had the same job on a small island in the Aegean Sea. Their job was to make sure that the tourists who visited the island had a perfectly relaxed holiday. In their free time the three of them hung out together and on one particular day they got an idea;

It is full moon tomorrow and we have got to get to those stones before it is too late!”

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The best idea we’ve ever had

It’s a Friday afternoon when we decide to buy the paint. Pink for Maud, purple for Amanda and turquoise for me. As soon as we have all finished our jobs for the day we meet up and take the car. With the paint and the brushes in the back of the car we drive towards the airport for diner. Close by the airport yet near the sea there is a restaurant called Poseidon where we always enjoy eating the locally made so-called bird nest. No worries, of course it is not an actual bird nest! As our bellies are getting full we start thinking about the stone we are going to choose. Should we each take our own or do we share one all together? Whatever we decide on, we all agreed that this was the best idea we’d ever had.

I wish we brought hiking shoes

We leave the restaurant and drive up to the valley. The road has a small parking on the side and a walking path leads us down to the middle of the valley. The light of the full moon leads us to the stones and as we get closer and closer we start realizing that the stones are surrounded with thorny bushes. Shit! How on earth are we going to get close enough to the stone? We are wearing simple clothes and I did not even bother to change my flip flops for normal shoes, so it seems unlikely that we can manage to reach the one stone we really want.

We keep on walking until we are in the middle of the valley and we start scaring each other with the fact that there might be snakes or scorpions over here.

A giant rock can’t carry me

Then we find one. This one perfect stone. It is located quite close to the walking path and there are some empty spots on the ground around it where we could stand. The stone seems big and has the right shape for us three to make it a colorful one.

We throw the two bags on the ground with the paint and the brushes and start exploring the area around the stone. Can we all stand around it at the same time? Oh, Amanda already started painting – okay, now Maud and I have to combat about who takes the second best spot. Somehow we manage to get all three of us to paint at the same time without having to stand in the spikes, but I have the feeling that there must be a better, an easier way to paint all together. I decide to climb on top of the rock. Then it happens. The part of the rock I am holding on to falls apart. Within seconds I find myself laying in those nasty little thorny bushes, which is also exactly the spot where Amanda left the cover of her paint bucket. My friends check if I am okay and thankfully everything is alright. I stand up and turn my back to one of my friends to start painting again, but she gets a giggle. I appear to have a big circle of pink paint on the back of my top together with a bunch of spikes from the bushes.

Please paint something else on it, so at least it looks like some nice piece of art!”

I tell Amanda. She takes all the brushes of paint we have and starts creating a nice sunshine on my back while Maud tries to remove the spikes.

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Monkey business?

Some cars are passing by the road a few meters away from where we are standing. When we see those vehicles it feels as if we are doing something illegal. We don’t really want anyone to see us here, but actually we haven’t got a clue if what we are doing is okay or not. There are a whole lot of stones in this valley and most of them have gotten a blue or pink color. Probably because someone was pregnant and wished for a boy or a girl. But what about the other kind of colors? There was also a green stone and another one that was orange.

The headlight needs to be turned off as soon as we see another car, but we have enough light from the moonshine anyway.

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How is it going to look like from above when we are driving by the valley tomorrow? Will it seem as big as it looks like from close by or perhaps we are not even really going to be able to spot if from above? It leaves us curious. We will have to pass by tomorrow in day time and try to find out.

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Ever since I left my home country I felt at home at any other place I went to. I enjoy getting to know more cultures by talking to strangers and hearing their philosophy about life. Speaking with gestures when you can not find a shared language, finding places only the locals go to and learn about their customs and values. Hanging out with local people makes me happy. The experience of every new place is a step out of your comfort zone where I like to wander around until it feels like a second home.

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