After breakfast I walked again to the ferry booking office but there was still no real news about the Express Skopelitis so we reprised our debate about the itinerary. We could skip Koufinisia altogether and go directly to Ios or we could spend an extra night on the small island, reschedule our dates at Homer’s Inn and reduce the stay in Antiparos from three nights to two. We went through the various combinations but it became too difficult and in an indecisive way confirmed that we would just go to Koufonissia as planned.
And so after this debate we took a long walk around the north side of the harbour past sun-bleached doors and blue domed churches and across pleasant secluded beaches where we continued to collect driftwood and finally arrived at a hard to reach bay where normal access is by boat from the harbour but our route was over the cliffs that required the sure-footedness of a mountain goat because one false move and there was a fifty metre drop into the sea via the rocks.
The beach was a bit untidy and it was unlikely to achieve blue flag status (there are none on Amorgos) but there was a wonderful sea with a gentle gradient to the deep clear blue water with an abundance of fish for snorkelling amusement. But shortly after midday the beach was getting rather full as more and more boats pulled in and set down their passengers. The beach bar was closed for the season and there was nowhere to get any refreshments so we walked back the way that we had come and had a drink in a bar next to some fishing boats resting in the gently undulating water.
In the company of a handsome tortoiseshell cat we had a simple lunch on the balcony of the room and then squandered the rest of the afternoon sitting in the sunshine. My interest in the ferries was becoming something of an obsession by now however and I did slip down to the boat terminal to see if the Seajet crew had returned to work after the strike and sure enough the soulless pink and white monster arrived, completed an efficient turn around and left in a hurry on to the next destination.
Except for the fact that the Swiss guest in the next room had to walk across our balcony to get to his room it was private and secluded so I thought that this would be the perfect opportunity to work on the all over tan so taking the precaution to sit close to the stairs so I would be able to hear him if he returned then I slipped my shorts off and found the best position to get the best of the rays. Well, this man must have had Cherokee blood in his veins because I didn’t hear a thing but all of a sudden he was at the top of the stairs and I was caught good and proper with my pants down. Luckily he found it amusing and after I had made myself decent again he stopped and chatted to us for a while about his whistle-stop three islands in four days vacation.
We did nothing for the rest of the day while we waited for sunset time and a stroll around the horseshoe shaped harbour and then we returned to the same taverna as the previous night and had an another simple but delicious meal. We went to bed early tonight because in the morning we had a six o’clock ferry to Koufonisia.
It was still dark when we made our way down to the harbour and joined a line of passengers flocking onto the Blue Star Paros and we made our way to the partially covered seating area on the top deck of the boat. As we watched from the deck rail we watched what resembled a sort of Pied Piper activity as people emerged from rooms and spilled out of little side streets all heading in the same direction and making their way to the boat.
It left on time and slipped out of Katapola into a surprisingly rough sea and as the sun rose behind us the wind whipped up the foaming waves and sent them high enough to crash over the sides of the top deck, the ferry lurched alarmingly from side to side, the Greek flag was cracking like a whip in the wind as though trying to detach itself from its pole and we were rather glad that this was only a forty-five minute journey.
The Blue Star arrived in Koufonisia on time and it was a bit of a concern to us that there was a large crowd at the ferry terminus because it seemed as though everyone was leaving the island just as we were arriving. Did they know something we didn’t?