1. The water sports on the beach
My mum refused to go on the crazy shark with me, so we settled upon a nice, leisurely canoe trip. As we made our way towards the starting point, I was sceptical. It was only when I saw the toned, tanned employee standing beside the canoes that my reluctance was appeased.
He steadied the boat and pushed us away from the safety of the beach. We had begun. We quickly reached a steady rhythm. Left. Right. Left. Right. Left. Right. Further and further out we went. Deeper and deeper the surface became. Smaller and smaller the toned, tanned Corfiot boy became.
‘Left right left right…’ for an hour? Bit repetitive, I would have thought. But, surprisingly, time seemed to disappear. Out in the sea, we had an hour to escape the beach bustle. At least if global warming really does melt Antarctica, I will be content to spend the rest of my lonely days floating about in a canoe.
Zefyros! Our holiday was a bit like a sandwich because we ate in Zefyros on the first night and then the last night! And why did we do that? Because Zefyros was zeeeeeebarilliant. The menu was as expansive as the sea that mirrored it (it was a seafront taverna) and the staff were as delicious as the Tzatziki served. A boy who, for some mysterious reason, reminded my mum of Lorcan (hi Lorcan if you’re reading this!), fulfilled his dutiful role of refilling our glasses, though this admittedly made me feel slightly guilty whenever I drank any water.
And not only was this culinary experience shared with my mum; it was also shared with the claw-some company of stray cats, as well as a few flies. I considered sharing some of my tuna with the cats but my groaning tummy convinced me otherwise.
But Zefyros is not the only contender along the seafront. Several other tavernas avidly fight for the title as BEST TAVERNA, and in all honesty, I cannot be the judge as I only tested two! But Zefyros, you were mighty wonderful.
3. The Fruit Market
Arguably my favourite Corfiot lady, the owner of the fruit market made my heart dissolve. She was adorable, with a little tip basket, labelled, ‘For the kids’ and a stylish, one-of-a-kind pronunciation of ‘Thank you’, which made me giggle every time. Much of the produce was homegrown and I always managed to fill the woven shopping baskets until they were brimming.
4. Cheap and cheerful
I bagged myself three carrots for 10 cents. A meal for two (obviously with extra drinks as I went with my mum who has a notorious affinity to white wine, red wine, blue wine, green wine…) costed a wallet-friendly 20 euros. And with a little haggling, we managed to save 81 euros in the leather shop. Not bad, eh?
5. The people
They may be a liability behind the wheel; they may serve alcohol to 16 year olds such as myself; they may queue-jump in the supermarket. But the Corfiots are the coolest people on the planet. We may have been stupid to put our trust in the precarious cabbies, but we survived whilst they took us for a literal spin around the island. I was able to run errands for my mum. No need for adults to trek down to the shops for Mythos; just send the kids! But if you do go to Agios Gordios, beware of the motorbikes that can be found charging down the FOOTpaths. My poor mum and I had quite the shock when we were suddenly face-to-helmet with a crazed motorcyclist…
I hope my beautiful words have entranced you. Don’t lie; I can already see you typing ‘lastminute.com’ into Google (or Bing if you’re a hipster) and shoving the other hand far down in your pocket to dig out any spare change to fund your travels to Agios Gordios. But I promise you that it will the best spontaneous decision you have ever made…