Part of me feels that I am too young to seek out this kind of experience, that I should save it until I am too old, tired and rich to shiver on a moist ledge, 15 pitches up, with only a sweat crusted Houdini and half a stale Clif Bar to get me through the night. I mean come on, only a few short years ago I was living out of a Chevy Corsica, bivvying in the pine needles and bear shit in Camp 4, climbing walls, eating good ol’ pb and j several times a day and duct taping my climbing pants together so they would make it up one more offwidth. What happened to me that suddenly I want to spend my holiday time doing something that even non-climber, non-mountain types could envy?
Well here I am, in May of 2009, in my bikini on my own private marble-tiled balcony, tapping away on the keys of my laptop while less than 100 m below me, the clear blue waters of the Mediterranean lap away at the rugged limestone shoreline of Kalymnos, Greece. Although I still have no answer to the question posed above, I haven’t spent much time trying to figure it out. My days are far too full: first I climb pitch after pitch of super-ultra-mega-classic climbs until I can no longer hold onto even the hugest of smooth, limestone jugs, then I wander on down to the sandy beach where I go for a refreshing dip in Mediterranean before wandering up to the bar for a celebratory cocktail and some Greek salad (every day I am lucky enough to spend here is reason enough to celebrate), up to my cute little studio apartment for a shower before meeting up with a posse of friends new and old for a long, leisurely dinner of delicious Greek food at one of the many restaurants within a 10 minute walk, then wander back home to fall into bed, exhausted, happy and ready to do it all again the following day.
Today is day 7 of my 27 day climbing vacation here in Kalymnos with Evan. If life gets better, I can’t imagine how. I’ll keep you posted.
Sitting on the plane for many hours (and forking out oodles of dough for a plane ticket) is all you gotta do to get to heaven
Evan wolfing down some delicious Kalymnian fare
You can hold onto the rock here with everything, and I mean everything (future post on that)
Enjoying some melon and Vergina after a sweaty day at the crag
The view from our apartment, the Grande Grotta climbing area upper right