Is it really over?

Or is this just a temporary hiatus, before hitting the road again?

I’m finally back in London, and now (shock, horror) thinking about finding a job. Hopefully I’ll be able to pick something up pretty quickly. The sooner I start a contract, the sooner I’ll be able to hit the road again. I probably could have stayed there longer, but people kept telling me I couldn’t just sit on a beach all day, and spend all night in bars. Not that I particularly wanted to believe them.

I had an absolute blast in Crete – choosing to hang out there for a while, and do nothing, was one of the best decisions I ever made. After spending so long on the road, constantly thinking about where you’re going, how you’re going to get there, dealing with language issues, trying to understand piles of stones that were once a city…it was nice to do nothing. My biggest challenges were choosing which waterfront restaurant to eat at, and deciding which book to take down to the beach.

If you ever get the chance to head to Crete, and I highly recommend you do, visit Chania, go to DNA and say hi to the crew – Helen, Steve, Pia, Linda, Daga, Marina. It can get a bit crazy there, but is a huge amount of fun. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a 60 year old man break dancing before. The girls behind the bar will make sure you’re enjoying yourself – just watch out when they start pouring the shots, they can drink a lot more than you. I might put up some of the photos on my website later, but this is a family show, so they might not all be appropriate…

One of the other things that was interesting there was to chat to some of the Americans serving at the Souda Bay US Navy Base. Some really interesting people, with a different take on America to the stereotype. I learnt a lot about America, and American people from them.

It is a pleasant change to be back in a country where I can drink water from the tap, municipal services all work, most drivers aren’t trying to kill me, and there are Western-style toilets, that I can flush paper down. I might even go and eat food from a cafe later, and not be too worried about what illnesses I might pick up. No doubt I’ll get bored of it all soon enough though.

I’ve already started thinking about my next trips – I want to buy a touring bike and ride around Ireland, then Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos. I also want to go to Austria again this northern winter, and then maybe Canada next year – how to fit it all in?

I’ll write up more of a summary of my trip in the next few days. Maybe just a listing of some of the highlights. I met all sorts of people while travelling, and I think some of those deserve a mention too. I’ll get onto it this week…