Greek Sailing Odyssey Day 0: Ostrava - Galaxidi / by Honza Cervenka

The start of the trip was less than ideal.  I was supposed to wake up at 3:30am to catch the 4:30 "Pendolino" train from Ostrava to Prague, but I overslept and woke up at 4:57--classic Honza.  So my dad hastily drove me to the train station to catch the 5:30 train, but then I had to take a taxi in Prague to make it to the airport in time (the driver asked for 1,500 CZK, almost triple of the usual rate--classic Prague--but what can you do when you're in a hurry to catch the plane).

I made it to the terminal at 9:10, just 10 minutes before check-in closed.  My overweight bag was accepted without any trouble, so low-cost airlines aren't always bad.  I rushed through security only to find out that the flight was delayed for an hour.  But, on the bright side, they also changed the itinerary--the plane was supposed to make a stop in Zakinthos and then continue to Patras, but the two were reversed.  Since my destination was Patras, the change in schedule made up for the delay.

Once I landed at the Patras airport, I had to make my way to the bus station in town to catch a bus to Galaxidi, where I was meant to meet with Maurizio, my ship's captain.  Public transport let me down--the next airport transfer was to arrive in 3 hours, which would cause me to miss the last bus to Galaxidi.  So I had to pay for another taxi to get me to the bus station in time for the 6:10pm bus straight to Galaxidi.

The bus ride from Patras to Galaxidi took 2.5 hours. I slept for the first 50 minutes (till the bus reached Navpaktos) and then was up for the rest of the journey.  A Greek girl sat next to me for about 30 minutes as she made her way from Navpaktos to her village . The bus ride was quite scenic, with the gulf on the right and imposing mountains on the left.  We passed countless half-built houses on the way--a scenery that would stay true everywhere I went.

The bus dropped me off in Galaxidi's town square.  Not knowing exactly how far the harbour was (and not wanting to carry my heavy bags aimlessly), I went to a local store to ask for directions.  Once the shopkeeper saw my bags, she yelled down a friend of hers who gave me a ride to the harbour.  There were a number of sailboats in docked there, but I found Maurizio's ship, "Oxalis", quite easily--it hasn't changed a bit since I saw it last all these years ago!  Maurizio and his friend Lisa went for a walk around the town, but came back to let me in the ship.  I unpacked, settled in my cabin and then we all went for late-night walk.  

I went to bed at around 11:30 and slept like a baby--the ship rocket with the waves like a cradle.  Good thing too, I had a big sail ahead.

 Our ship Oxalis moored in Galaxidi

Our ship Oxalis moored in Galaxidi

 The port in Galaxidi

The port in Galaxidi

 An islet off of Galaxidi

An islet off of Galaxidi

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