The classic and hellenistic turbomachine greek souvlaki

Well well well. First of all I want to express my gratitude to life and to the wise and vast universe for giving me the head, the will and the correct people around me to finally obtain a master degree in engineering and get one step closer of being an adult. #IhavenoideawhatImdoing. Secondly, how the fuck are you suppose to wrap up a 10 month adventure in one of the most exotic countries of the globe? May the turbomachinery and science help me then.

Between all this excitement you gotta ask yourself one question…-am I looking for a place to go and have crazy outdoors adventures? Amazing and magnificent archeological sites? Best food ever after the mexican? The beautiful agean blue sea color? Great spots for outdoors sex? Crazy people dancing and shouting opa? Do I feel lucky? Do you? Pppunk!?-. Greece ladies and gentlemen, is the answer to your problems.

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I spent the last 10 months in a country under “crisis”, studying under one of the highest levels of engineering of the world, eating delicious grilled octopus, souvlaki, pilafi, mussels and fried squids among others, drinking refreshing refreshments like ouzo, raki, tsipourou, rakomelo and mastixa, listening to emotional bouzouki, wandering around with the most beautiful women I’ve seen so far (cheers on Greece and your genes H!), travelling around places of the planet I never thought I would go to (cheers on #momondo), discovering ancient mythical greek temples, trying to pet every single street cat and dog I saw as I would scream “oh gatito!”, establishing friendships and bonds that I truly hope last long enough for me to have white hair and learning that life indeed is a journey where happiness and freedom exists. Oh yeah, a hell of a crisis as you can read.

What a ride. What a fucking awesome ride I must say, including the fact that today I know my DNA carries Greece too. #greekmexican #Manolios

Greece is world widely known because of the food like Tzatziki, the music with the Bouzouki, greeks shouting “Opa!” all the time, broken plates on the weddings, magical places/beaches/parties in Santorini or Mykonos and also for anal sex (#culturalknowledge). The truth is that Greece is absolutely way more than that so let me tell you my experience of this awesome country.

As I was on my way back to Azteca lands, Mexico, I was struggling quite a bit cuz I could not find a way to actually summarize an entire year of knowledge, adventures and emotions as the one just passed. But well, putting aside that time is a bitch and went by as fast as possible, I first want to explain something about the greeks; they are indeed probably the most similar culture to the latinoamericans, at least to mexicans as they love living life, eating well, easy money and power. Equally, very strong familiar/religious values, strong pride for their country and an amazing skill of finishing a freddo espresso in 5 hours as they complain about the new traffic lights, taxes and the government. Plus, they do walk veeery slow and are quite informal/relaxed with everything. Oh, and they don’t give an absolute fuck about parking. As said, very similar to mexicans.

 

It is true that greeks have a bit of a temper (it was funny because I didn’t understand shit and I would just smile whenever a greek was pissed at me, which made them more pissed) but to be fair, I have never been in a country with such high hospitality no matter if you were a foreigner, stranger or a drug lord faced mexican like me; they will offer you something to eat and a glass of Raki or Ouzo and ask you about your life and be genuinely interested in it. They will make you feel as if you were home and no less than that. Everything started with my former landlords, who kindly picked me up at the airport, invited me for dinner and would meet on a monthly basis just to chat up a bit and have some drinks, they are absolutely amazing people.

The magic in Greece is that no matter how hot or cold or difficult a situation is, you would listen to “halará” which means something like “chill out bro” and you would enjoy whatever you’re doing/eating/drinking. I must say I was fairly surprised by the scenery of the country as I thought it would be only cool because of the beaches and the unbelievable attractive women, but they have mountains and snow too, very convenient for snow sports and for long cool hikes. The other magic in Greece is that every 5.4 seconds you hear “pu ise re malaka!?” which means “where are you moda fucka?” and “PAME GAMOTO PAMEEEE” which means “let’s go for fuck’s sake, let’s go”. As said, magical.

Thessaloniki is located at the northern part of Greece and is the host of one of the best universities of the country which means a city full of students, so the average age of the city should go around 27-30 years old, so a lot of activities and epic parties to do in the northern greek lands. Feeling too adventurous and fit? How about a hike to the top of Mount Olympus and greet Zeus? (highest peak in Greece) Feeling like a monk and searching peace? what about a visit to the mythical mountains of Meteora? feeling romantic? how about a taverna night with amazing food and wine at the beach somewhere Chalkidiki or Kavala? Feeling eager to learn history? Visit the museums on Thessaloniki or go around to Pella where Alexander the Great was supposed to be born. Feeling like the last man of the universe? A night out with the Erasmus exchange youngsters or to meet greeks on the Ladadika area will never disappoint.

At the same time, the peloponese area (This is Sparta) as well as the obvious places like Athens, Mykonos, Santorini (one of the most beautiful sunsets you’ll ever see in your life) and the other 3000 and something islands, offer a fantastic collection of relaxing/adventurous activities to do. That’s the beauty of the country, you have the possibility of doing a zillion things despite how high or low your budget is, and fun is absolutely guaranteed.

Then Crete ladies and gentlemen it’s another bloody galaxy. I had the amazing luck of spending days there during Easter celebrations with a very close cretan friend. Cheers on that Mflow & Co. The tradition as in most of catholic countries is to not eat meat for some weeks until Yisus ascends to the skies and then it is celebrated by eating a complete and delicious roasted goat. All of it. Literally. Plus the incredible beach sceneries, undisputed hospitality of the Cretans the absolutely gorgeous cretan females and the alcoholic spirit called Raki or Rakomelo (+honey +cinnammon +hot +love).

From walking around bizantine temples and otoman architecture buildings to going up to the Parthenon and feel like Saint Seiya speaking to Athena (#SaoriSaaan). I had the chance of visiting about 10 islands in total, about 4999 remaining or more and they all gave me something different, like the most delicious Pistaccio ice cream I’ve ever had in my life.

This year I also had the chance of settle what it appears to be a long and solid friendship with a New Zealander girl and an Indian lad. Don’t know when I’ll see the indian, but I will visit the magical lands of New Zealand for 11 days and I’m pretty sure it will be just amazing to run in the same lands as Gandalf. Anyway, I also made a bunch of greek friends which unfortunately differs with my year in Sweden. I thought I made a couple of swede friends, but it was just my imagination as friends I did that year were from everywhere but Sweden. Anyhow, Greece was not the case, as I met smart, crazy, cool and incredibly beautiful ladies. And nice greek lads too. Hehe. People that truly taught me something, that gave me their time, a piece of a heart and that made me taking the flight to Mexico entirely full. That is exactly the way one should leave a country after so long no?

The truth is that it is not possible to tie up all the emotions experienced, but they shall remain in my head and in my heart for many many many years to come I’m sure.

As if this was not enough, after many many many emotional bumps and upside downs, just when you feel like you can do/give/have no more? life said – ha! sucker! – and then love knocked on my door. Again. My best friend says that I fall in love every two seconds and he’s actually not so far away from the truth, the difference is that I do get authentically amazed every two seconds, but love? that shit is way up high on another level. Yet, it seems that I reached that level again after many many many obstacles on the way in the most unexpected and unwanted way possible. That was a good one life, cheers. (Smiling from side to side thinking about a german lady somewhere in the world called H.)

 

Anyways. Greece was a random and unsteady phenomena that stroke me on a daily basis from feet to head. It knocked me out, brought me back to life, knocked me out again and then thrusted me right off to the skies so I could just fly and rumble. From seeing cats resting inside a “closed” shoe store to jump from a 15 m cliff in Matala beach, Crete; from feeling like a total ignorant and stupid incompetent pseudo engineer, to have the best thesis supervisor ever and recover my engineering confidence, from having no clue of what to do with my life to achieve successfully my master in engineering. From thinking that I would never play music again, to buy an ukulele and also play drums and sing in a very talented international band in a bloody awesome gig. From arriving sane, to finish happily insane.

For me, Greece is more than taking a fancy boat in Santorini, more than partying like a maniac in Crete, more than dancing like a beast in Thessaloniki. It is even more than finding a bloody mantis dancing in your ukulele, more than the beautiful greek ladies walking around the streets, more than all the delicious food you can eat in a tavern and more than fantastic beaches, mountains and the color of the sea.

Greece is something outside of this world.

Greece is home malaka.

Yamas!

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The histrionic chronicles: Bergamo

This section is purely devoted to those awkward, emotional and strange moments of my life, that gave me a nervous laugh while feeling head over heels for someone. Some come from life, some others are extracts of my travel journal. Hope you enjoy.

Bergamo, Italy. 29.10.16 at around 12:00 pm

I just found a lovely bench to sit down on the eastern side of the city, and take out my journal to keep documenting the first days of my “all around the world” trip. As I was enjoying the sun and watching and old lady feeding some cats, it happened.

A blonde, tall and blue eye enchanting girl sits on the bench in front of me. She has a black and white stripe dress, black tights and black nike sneakers and she is eating an ice cream. I am flabbergasted.

On the other side of the bench, there is a metal fence and then a cliff, consequence of the upper city architecture. Out of the blue, a black donkey emerges from the hill and approaches to her, seeking to be petted. She smiles, she takes a picture and indeed pets him. Her smile denotes tenderness towards the cute donkey and this is the first time she looks at my stupid face, fascinated by her and her smile. I drop my pen and become clumsy. -What is her favorite band? What is her biggest dream?-. I think to myself. I don’t want to look like a stalker and a perv, but I cannot stop looking at her and I bet my face is the one of a total fool. Very discretely, basically undetectable, she moves her eyebrows and her eyes as if she is having a tremendous internal debate with her, as if she is talking with herself. It just looks as crazy as when I do it with myself.

She looks at me another second and yet again, I cannot maintain her eye-sight and I look down. It is fucking embarrassing, and the only thing I do is to drink water while my legs are just not responding. I don’t even know how to approach her and she knows, I know she knows. She finishes her ice cream and leaves. I managed to stand up 3 min. after but of course, she is not anywhere close. I said to myself that if I ever see her again I will talk to her.

I sigh.

Around 4:00 pm

I find myself right in the heart of the “Piazza Vecchia”, eating an orgasmic salmon kind of pizza, an amazing “merengue” candy and singing “Stairway to heaven” of my favorite band as a street musician goes crazy with the solo. I close my eyes, look up, take a deep breathe and smile as the song finishes.

And is if it was part of a bizarre high school theatre play, there she was, walking a couple of meters towards the “Duomo”. I freeze and think that it is one of those moments when life smiles, like when your mom agrees to take you to SixFlags after 3 months of trying everyday. Hence, my brain gave me an electrical chill and said “go and talk to her”. She was standing right in the middle of the piazza and as I approached, she looked at me and laughed discreetly. Again, I knew she knew.

Ciao! Parla italiano? Or english?- I said. -Hi, english yes, a little bit!- she responds smiling as my brain just got literally electroshocked and there is a “Technical fault, please stand by” message in my head as her blue eyes point towards me. Her name is Tiana (or maybe Tjana?) and is from Austria, I start talking very fast and asking many questions, one of them is that she looks like a very interesting person and if I could interview her as part of my travel, to what (obviously normal) her reaction was to laugh and an expression of “what the fuck?”. She responds kindly that she would definitely like to go and talk somewhere else but that unfortunately her train is leaving within the next minutes and she was already on her way to the station, (which takes a while if you’re walking or if you wait for the bus). -Well that’s a pity but no worries! I do wish you a lovely trip- I said, while my internal systems were still struggling to keep it together. -I’m so sorry! Really I would stay but I need to go – she says. I grab her hand, tell her that it was a pleasure to meet her and we both leave.

As she walks down towards the exit of the square, I turned to see her again. She turns too. I smile and she smiles back as she keeps walking.

I did not ask for her number, or fb or anything, because I wanted it to remain it that way. I will definitely never know if she was indeed attracted/interested towards me, if this was just another typical episode of saying “not interested/fuck off” politely or if this was indeed a corresponded emotional moment. A pure and authentic moment that I will never forget.

Un amor de esos que duran sólo un instante, pero que te hacen sonreír por siempre.