Traveling, Sketching and Painting
Today was our last day of traveling and painting but boy did we make a day of it. In the morning we packed our bags and headed to a church near Naoussa called Ioannis to paint. This was an area that we hadn't been to and even Irene, who lives in Paros, hadn't been there! I got to paint on some rocks that the church was built into with a gorgeous view of the sea. Boats were sailing around, people were swimming and we were painting. Around one we all went for a swim right there outside of the church. Essentially we were at the church's little beach area and it was wonderful! I was so hot because I was sitting right in the hot sun for my painting so it was a relief to be swimming in the crystal clear blue cool water! Once I tried to sink to the bottom to see how deep the water was and I didn't go anywhere. I tried to sink and wasn't successful! The water is so salty, making it easy to float. Also next to the church was a boat repgair place, it kind of looked like a boat graveyard so I just had to grab a picture. I wish I could show you! You will just have to be patient and wait for me to get them up on Facebook.
Our next stop on the island was Lefkes. We went there last week for lunch at a place above the town called Floras. Today we walked around the town and went up to the church that I fell in love with last week! It has two tall towers on either side of it. It just looked gorgeous from afar and it was even better close up! Greece had a holiday on Monday so there were fun flags hanging across the courtyard in front of the church, which made me love it even more! I took a ton of pictures and posted one that you may have already seen! I'm totally in love with the church. After our tour we went up to Floras to paint the view of the town. I definitely included the church, it is small because we are so high up but I made it bigger than it actually is to emphasize it in my picture. After a couple of hours of painting we ate a very late lunch there. Everyone was ravenous so it wasn't hard clearing off the table.
When we left Lefkes our instructor Jun took us on a quick tour of Paros so we could see the entire island. It was so sweet of him to do this and we loved seeing all of the different parts of the island. We had already made it part of the way around the island during the first part of the day and there are a few towns we have been to already so this was just filling in the gaps. He also drove us to see some amazing views of Parikia, the sea and the setting sun. By the time we made it back to Parikia we only had a couple of hours before we had to leave again. Our class and people from the other classes decided to go to a festival in Aliki. In May everyone makes wreaths with the May flowers and they keep it around for a couple of months. When they are dried out they pile them together to make a bonfire. Apparently you are suppose to jump over the fire and it will make you fertile and if you jump over it three times it makes the demons go away. There was traditional Greek dancing, which we participated in! I felt like I was really a part of Greek culture fully! I always watched Irene's feet to make sure I was dancing the right way. I also jumped over the bonfire with my friends! It was exciting and a lot of fun. People even said Opah! I have been waiting to hear a person say Opah in a regular situation!