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Oh, no!... I’m hungry!! (A vacation blog.)

Thursday, August 22, 2013

I know the title may sound misleading, as this is, indeed, a summer vacation blog. But I promise to explain everything in a while.

Summer vacation is over and summer itself is coming to an end. We’re supposed to be feeling rested, re-energized, with batteries fully-charged and ready for winter, right? Well, this year that’s not quite the case.
I could tell you that we had a great vacation, enjoying the woods in my mountain village and swimming at the beautiful beaches of Northern Greece – which we actually did, to be honest – and everything would look wonderful and sound like a dreamy vacation. But I would be lying…

Several things that happened, family issues, some people’s attitudes, spoken words that hurt, worries that we didn’t know how to deal with, all these things robbed our vacation of the most important thing.
In Greek, we have a word for it: xegniasia. It means having no worries at all. Just like the word “insouciance” but only with a positive meaning. Not indifferent, just worry-free. Isn’t that what vacation is all about? It’s about resting the mind, not just the body. It’s about clearing our heads, emptying them of bad thoughts and things that burden us and getting back to “reality” with recharged strength and courage to face anything that life will send our way. This may sound too difficult and it is probably impossible to get rid of all worries. But vacation always helps and to some extent we manage to give our mind a break. For us, this wasn’t the case this year. And what kind of vacation could be promising when it starts with an accident where my oldest daughter broke her front permanent teeth? She’s ok now, she has a smile again, but we have a long road of dental therapy ahead of us.

But let me explain the title. My youngest daughter is a typical 8-year-old kid. Mind you, not a typical girl. She’d prefer climbing a tree to playing with dolls. And she always prefers playing to sitting down and having a proper meal. So, she usually ignores the first hunger signs and only pays attention to them when they’re really becoming unbearable! One afternoon, while we were at the beach and after she had been swimming and diving for quite a long time, the sun had almost set and we were about to leave. So, she came out of the sea, covered herself in her towel, sat down on the beach and with a painful voice and a terrified face she exclaimed: “Oh, nooooo!”
“What is it?”, we all asked.
“I’m hungry!!!”, she shouted as if she had actually been starving for days! We all laughed and this became our summer family joke. Just before meals, someone would say it in the same desperate manner and we would all laugh.
That’s one of the reasons I chose it as a title for this blog. The other reason is that this vacation left us with a feeling of hunger. For more, worry-free, real vacation. For some mind rest. For “xegniasia” !

But as with everything else in life, we’ll have to keep the good moments and cross out the bad ones. And there were good moments. Maybe I wasn’t in my usual picture-taking mood and I don’t have many things to show you but there are a few pictures to share. And thankfully, the shadow of my worries is not visible!

Travelling with our bikes for the first time!

I should have paid more attention to the sky on that day. It was kind of foreseeing. Cloudy with a slight chance of sunshine!

Discovering bike trails through the woods and the prairies.

Water pit stops!

Exploring the underwater world just before sunset. We saw tons of fish, sea urchins and an octopus!

I left the sunset pictures for the end. They were just beautiful! That was the only time my photography spirit would wake up, grab the camera and get click-happy! I just couldn’t resist to the colors of the sea surface. A water rainbow changing from turquoise to emerald green, to purple and silver blue, dancing around the golden trail of the sunlight!

Thank you for reading! I wish your summer vacation has left you with tons of beautiful memories that will warm your heart throughout the winter. And if not, you still have time! It’s never too late to cherish beautiful summer moments with the people you love. We don’t need vacation to create memories.
All we need is smiles and joy.

Member Comments About This Blog Post:
BLOOMINGLENA 9/5/2013 5:48AM

    My sweet Elle! I love the photos! Sunsets are magical and the ones with you and the girls with your bikes look like you had some joyful family moments in nature. Summer vacations are not always worry-free but keep in mind you had some this year (never enough, I know)! We may not have the chance to go away next year! Moreover you enjoyed biking with the rest of the family in the mountains! New activity this year! Nothing is perfect. All our life is full of worries, more or less important. Take a deep breath, look at the beautiful photos and fill your mind with all the good and positive memories of this summer. Kisses to your beautiful daughters!

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JITZUROE 9/4/2013 4:09PM

    Such lovely pics!!!! Thanks for sharing.

As for me, oh noooooooo! I'm hungry!!!!! : )

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WATERMELLEN 8/29/2013 9:13PM

    Dolce far niente: Italian "sweet do nothing" time.

Thanks for teaching me the xegniasia word. I've written it down. My DH loves bowties and always tries to tie them without too much precision: because "insouciant" looks better!!

I somehow didn't get a summer holiday this year (other than 1 four-day weekend in June) . . . but I've tried to enjoy the beautiful moments anyhow. Like the youngish moon this morning, and peregrine falcons hunting over my house, and the spectacularly enormous white cosmos in my flower bed.

It's been a long time since I travelled in Greece, but I loved it too: such a wonderful country with such amazingly warm and welcoming people. One thing that struck me in the ancient ruins was the persistence of flowers that (I was told) were probably once planted and have self-seeded over the centuries since: poppies, of course, and hollyhocks and . . . so many others.

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TRAVELGRRL 8/29/2013 7:55PM

    Your pictures are beautiful; maybe it wasn't completely "worry free" but it looks like you have plenty of lovely memories!

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WENWIN 8/25/2013 3:12PM

    You have a true gift for words and expressing your feelings without going over board.
I loved how you started out with a negative and as your blog progressed it all seemed to get into a better place.

One way or the other,you will have some wonderful family memories.

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_JODI404 8/24/2013 3:13PM

    Although it wasn't xegniasia, you still managed some good times!

I love all your pics, especially those sunset ones-- stunning!!

Hopefully with the continued dental therapy, all will be well again with your daughter.

I really am looking forward to some time from work to recharge my batteries. It's a goal to work towards to be "worry free". Away on vacation, or in daily life -- worry is a taker of valuable time and does not deliver us anything of value. Meditation does help me a lot.

Wishing you more enjoyable times together as summer starts to wind down. It just doesn't feel like time for the seasons to change to me.... perhaps that will change soon.

Have a great weekend!

Comment edited on: 8/24/2013 3:14:14 PM

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GEORGE815 8/24/2013 12:37PM

    Recent vacation was great. This last work week was tough though.

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THOMS1 8/22/2013 6:03PM

    I enjoyed your blog and your wonderful pictures. emoticon

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FIT_MAMA_2_FOUR 8/22/2013 11:20AM

    I think it's common to have ups and down on can be stressful trying to please all outside of your everyday element. You seem to handle it beautifully. Love the biking vacay-wonderful. Thanks for sharing.

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MICKEYH 8/22/2013 11:13AM

    Absolutely beautiful!! emoticon

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FUNLOVEN 8/22/2013 9:45AM

    Sorry to hear about the stress that faced you just before you left for vacation. From the things you have told us in other blogs about your youngest daughter I thought for sure she was the one who had the mishap. What a surprise that it was your oldest daughter!

Your vacation looks like it had some redemption to it for you. What fun to be able to ride your bikes and swim in such beautiful surroundings.

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FITFOODIE806 8/22/2013 9:28AM

    I so appreciate your honesty. Sometimes vacations (or any part of life really) adds worry and stress that wasn't planned. The important piece is how you deal with it. Looks like you have a beautiful attitude! Love the pictures, can only imagine seeing an octopus!
Hope the healing process for DD goes well. How scary.

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KANOE10 8/22/2013 9:21AM

    I love your beautiful pictures. I am sorry there was stress on your vacation, but glad that there were good moments of enjoyment with your family. My summer vacation also involved family stress, so I can understand your hunger for a peaceful one. Your little daughter sounded cute and I envy her ability to becomse so absorbed in things that she forgets her hunger until the last moment. I am glad your older daughter's tooth can be fixed.


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BAKER1009 8/22/2013 9:04AM

    Thanks for sharing the photos Elle! I love seeing you and the girls! Makes me feel a little closer to you even with all these miles between us. I am sorry that the vacation was not as restful as you would have liked. I know there is so much going on with you right now and I wish I could give you a great big hug and we could share that morning cup of coffee we always joke about. Move to Canada already, LOL!!!

Sending you warm thoughts today and big hugs!!

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123ELAINE456 8/22/2013 8:31AM

  Sounds like You had a Wonderful Vacation regardless of what happen that was bad. Glad your Older Daughter is okay. Your Younger Daughter sounds like she can be very Funny at times. I love the pictures. You have Great Memories of the good times you had. God Blessings to You and Everyone. Have a Wonderful Week. Take Care.

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KELLIEBEAN 8/22/2013 7:54AM

    Beautiful pictures. Any time I can look at water, I am instantly at peace and relaxed!

Hold on to the good moments and memories of your vacation. Block out the tough parts.

I'm glad your daughter is okay!

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MJREIMERS 8/22/2013 6:55AM

    What a great way to get your "fitness" in while vacationing. You are lucky that your entire family likes to bike. I couldn't get my husband to bike anywhere! (He is beginning to "stroll" with me, but that's a story for a blog.)

Greece looks beautiful and I hope you had moments of xegniasia. The pictures are gorgeous and your daughter sounds delightful! emoticon

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HAKAPES 8/22/2013 6:18AM

    Wonderful location. I've never been to Greece yet, but it's planned for next year for a conference. You have a lovely daughter! :-)

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JSTETSER 8/22/2013 5:53AM

    What a great vacation!
I love the photos!

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GHOSTFLAMES 8/22/2013 4:14AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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WEARINGTHIN 8/22/2013 4:02AM

    It looks like you have the kind of summer vacations families were meant to have. You must be doing the right thing to give your family and yourself such treats in life. Way to go. Glenn

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