I’m now onto the third day of my A to Z Blogging Challenge. I’ve started scheduling posts from here on out for two reasons. Firstly, I have a meeting today that’s going to be emotionally challenging. It’s fully possible that the next couple of weeks are going to be spent going over this in my head, although I know I shouldn’t. That’s just what happens when you’re upset about something and you feel powerless. The other reason is that Luke is on spring break from school and we’re heading down to England on holiday. I’ll be keeping up to date with what other bloggers are writing but it’s going to be more difficult to write my own, especially on two sites. Today I’m writing C is for Cyprus.
Cyprus is a country that is dear to my heart. I’ve been there too many times to count. It gave me comfort when I needed it and inspiration when I was blocked. The thought of going back there motivated me during dark days and when I’m there, I feel like a different woman. I feel like the woman I always should have been. It’s also where my son was conceived, I think. It might sound odd that I’ve put Cyprus on my wish list posts then, but it’s not strange at all to me. I want to go back. It doesn’t matter how many times I go, I will still want to return.
I first visited Cyprus in 2008. I had a really hellish 2007 and a shaky start to 2008 but the trip to Cyprus in March that year marked a new beginning for me. We arrived to grey skies and I wasn’t sure I was going to enjoy myself but that night the heavens opened to a dazzling thunderstorm and I knew I was going to love the island. The last time I was there was in April 2016 and since the day I left, I’ve been thinking of ways that I can go back. Unfortunately, the one thing that keeps me from returning is the financial situation. It’s an expensive place. So, for now, it has to remain as just another item on my wish list.
Whenever we go to Cyprus, we stay in Kato Pafos, which is in the Paphos area. Since Luke was born, we started to think about all the things that were important in a holiday when travelling with children. At first, our usual aparthotel was ideal because the staff were really child-friendly and there was a little baby pool. We always go self-catering because of allergies so that was another positive aspect. Around the same time that Luke became aware of being in another country and started enjoying things like water features in pools and slides, we realised that the place we had been travelling to for years didn’t have any of the things that were important to Luke. The hotel itself changed too and now they are offering luxury, all inclusive, ultra-expensive packages that we just can’t afford. That’s life, isn’t it? It changes and you outgrow places and people and sometimes, places outgrow you.
We have certain traditions when we visit Cyprus.
- Our nightly walks down the harbour for a Magnum from the wee wooden shack paper shop that sits on the harbour
- Lunches at Central Point Cafe in nearby Polis
- Hiring a car from a guy called Nestor in Coral Bay
- Lazy mornings drinking coffee in the Debenhams cafe, which had the best public WiFi in Paphos
- We used to always get our drinks from Aphrodite’s Secret if we were buying them on the move or we would sit at La Boite 67, where the banter was excellent and occasionally a pelican would drop by
- In the early days, we would get take-away chicken or chips from Mr. Chicken. We didn’t go to Mr. Chicken last time we were there but I can’t remember why. Perhaps it closed or was under new management and that put us off.
Another tradition we used to have was visiting Petra tou Romiou. The photo on the front of The Tangled Web was taken there. My husband was the photographer. Legend has it that it was the birthplace of Aphrodite and if you swim around the rock three times, you will meet your true love soon after. Well, I’ve met mine now and I can’t swim anyway but I did like going for a paddle in the sea. I used to pray to Aphrodite every time I was there and I always got what I asked for, although I usually wished that I hadn’t later. Last time I was there I didn’t know what to ask for, so I simply said that I wanted to get back on the track I should have been on, had I not been derailed when I was a teenager. A few weeks later, I started studying for my degree. Three years down the line, I feel like I’m definitely on the right path now. Which means I must be ready to go back to Petra tou Romiou…
In more recent years, I enjoyed visiting the Kings Avenue Mall. They had an Yves Rocher shop there which was great, and a Costa Coffee on the top floor with a balcony that looked out over the street. The Carrefour supermarket was pretty cool too and stocked lots of international foods. Last time I was there I remember thinking that I wanted to fly to Cyprus with an empty suitcase next time and buy a whole new wardrobe from the mall. It’s still a dream to do that.
If you’ve never visited Cyprus, I highly recommend going, especially around April or May when it’s not too hot. The humidity can become really oppressive in summer.
Tomorrow I’ll be writing about D for Dark Nights and Fairy Lights, (link won’t work until the 4th of April) which is not a travel post this time. If you’re interested you can visit my previous posts which are listed below or you can hop over to my author site and read about the A to Z of Nanowrimo.