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Flashback Friday: The Colossus, the boot, and the bracelets

Updated: Jan 9, 2022

Several years ago, ATB#1 Mady and I started a short-lived blog for friends and family while we were travelling around Greece and Italy. We would sit in a cafe or restaurant, drink copious amounts of iced coffee or other beverage and write using our Ipads and a tiny wireless keyboard. Today, I share one of those blogs. This was written in Rhodes, Greece after we had spent several days rerouting around a massive earthquake that had destroyed several of the islands on our itinerary.


After an essentially sleepless night (not counting the uncomfortable pair of hours spent "resting" on rock-hard airport benches, waiting for our connecting flight), we made it to our Rhodes digs. The Stay Hostel was voted the top hostel in Greece for 2017 and it's easy to see why: effortlessly relaxed, manned by charming, lean young men of indeterminate nationality, and offering pizza night, running and walking tour maps, and a complimentary fresh-squeezed lemonade upon check-in. We were just glad our room was waiting for us, and flopped onto our beds for an instant catnap.

We have only ever associated Rhodes with the Colossus. Our Lonely Planet Greek Islands guide for this island contained a great story about how the huge bronze statue (which took a dozen years to complete) was toppled by an earthquake in antiquity only about a century after it was created; then nearly 800 years later, it was broken into pieces and sold to a foreign buyer - who used 900 camels to cart off all of the ruins.

We'd have liked to have seen that particular convoy.

So since the most recognizable icon of this island is now scattered to the winds, we decided to wander the Medieval Old Town. A very different look from the blinding white and aquamarine blue of the Cyclades...

The winding streets were a riot of influences and cultures, including Arabic, Ottoman, Italian... and British, as we were lured to a shady bar at noontime with the promise of a cool Strongbow cider. It promptly arrived... in a pair of glass boots. Pro-tip: drink slowly from the side.

Later, we wandered into a rather exclusive jewelry boutique, Meandros Gold and Silver. Mady had been encouraging Lyn to purchase some flowy dresses and Lyn got Mady back where it really hurts... in the wallet. So while Lyn picked up a pretty silver and sea opal bracelet (that her daughter will have to prise out of her cold, dead hands) and against Mady's better judgment, she bought a stunning silver and garnet bracelet that's a replica of a piece found in the Greek Museum of Antiquities, and which cost more drachmas than the average Rhodian Colossus-builder made in a year, probably. Still, at least now she will have a lovely heirloom piece to wear and (IF SHE BEHAVES) hand down to her daughter... which is a hell of a lot more than this island has to show for 12 years of bronze casting.


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