|Photo by Dimitris Koutsoukos|
There is a time on Mykonos that locals dread. No, not winter. And not tax season—though come to think of it I’m not precisely sure when that is, as new taxes seem to flower all year round here in Greece. The time I’m talking about is August.
Yes, the most beautiful month weather-wise for the beach, and vacation time for Europeans everywhere. And where do all these frolic-desperate Europeans seem to head? Yep, you got it, the Greek islands. But it’s not just Greece’s EU-mates who head here; there are Americans, Aussies, and Kiwis making the trip, too. [Note: I hope I’m not insulting New Zealanders by using the adorable name I hear them calling each other. If I have, or did the fruit, little bird, or shoe-polish of the same name, my sincerest apologies, for I did not mean to single you out for the insults to follow.]
If I were to post photographs of what actually goes on here during the few weeks in August when Mykonians abandon their island to an invasion of twenty-something partying visitors, a lot of you wouldn’t believe they’re real. All those virtually naked bodies on the beach during the day, dress up for a night on the town determined to have their tanned, appurtenant body parts prominently displayed. And come sunrise, those dark, seemingly isolated corners of the town thought so secure for displays of how-nice-to-meet-you-thank-you-very-much-bye-bye affection light up with surprises for participants and passersby alike.
In my capacity as a writer—especially with a soon to be released book titled Mykonos After Midnight—I am from time to time the recipient of photographs taken by early rising fishermen and late returning club employees of such an explicit nature you’d think they were posed. Hello out there, everyone on Mykonos has a camera phone these days. But you’ll just have to take my word for it and let your imaginations run wild (think Fifty-Five-Hundred Shades of Grey) because I’m not about to post any here. After all we do have our standards…somewhere.
Having teased you mercilessly with thoughts of an up close and personal take on Mykonos After Midnight (plug #2 intended), permit me to say that my personal early morning routine (these days) is of a very different sort. For I find myself alone with my thoughts—close by one of the windiest places on this island of the winds—inside the town’s soccer stadium, within the small shack where locals come for healing of their aches and pains. I go each day to keep my old high school football injured knee well enough to painlessly maneuver the town’s flagstone streets each night (at the moment the streets are winning).
Pity me not, for I shall soon be back to my old ways and haunts, but still no photos unless perhaps I’m collared in the right mood at Bouchercon and plied with appropriate drink and Icelandic delicacies.