I’m Ioanna and this is what happened today…

 

A good friend of many years, suggested I should write more.

Here’s part of our conversation:

Me:        …I don’t really know what to do more about my blog other than write, that’s what I’m good at.

Jimmy: You need to write more. You’re a very talented writer and I enjoy reading them. You need to put a bigger effort. Grab your readers’ attention.

Me:        You are right. I just don’t want to write if I don’t feel like it cause the result sucks.

Jimmy:  You have it in you. I believe you have a lot to offer.

Me:        Lately I’m more into writing again.

Jimmy:  You’re not posting enough.

Me:        Maybe I start writing fiction! Hahaha..!

Jimmy:  Noooo. Be you! “I am Ioanna and this is what happened today”

Me:        I am me, but if I write more about my past and stories like that, it will not be happy stories.

Jimmy: No past. Today! What happened today. Write about it. Leave the past out. …I went to the beach… I saw this person… I spoke to an old friend today…

… I’ll tell you what. Write what happened today and send it to me before you post.

 

So. Jimmy. Here I am, not keeping my promise to send you my post before I post it, but keeping my promise to describe my day. Actually, it’s been very a very interesting day!

 

My alarm went off at 5:58 (don’t ask why I put weird times like this instead of, say, 6am sharp..dunno). I checked my emails on my phone, sadly there was nothing there. I went back to sleep. Woke up again at 7am and went straight to the fridge. Made my standard breakfast – 1 banana, 1 scoop of whey protein, 1 scoop of linseed, cinnamon, 1 cup of yogurt and 1 teaspoon of chia seeds. Delicious, filling and healthy!

I sat on my bed, took my laptop and logged on to Skype to chat with my bestie. It’s been over a month that I haven’t had decent internet to be able to talk with her so, since I got it yesterday in the studio I am renting, we had a lot of catching up to do. I played my favorite playlist in the background and did some admin work as she was doing her work at the other side of the world too. I was complaining again about not having a lot of work (or any work, to be more precise) in the last couple of months, and my mind was trying to find alternative solutions, as usual.

We were interrupted by my landlord knocking at my door. He wanted to pick up a TV he had left in my studio (which by the way was not working). I took the opportunity to show him the little one-on-one moment I had with the cockroach wandering on my bed the other night and that the sink was not working properly and the water would stay for hours without being drained. God, this studio is such a disappointment in comparison to the one I was renting last time I was in Jeri. But, hey, I am still grateful I have a place to stay paying a monthly fee and I am lucky it is in a good location with good, quiet neighbors. Most of them are permanent residents, families and girls that work in the local hotels. One of my neighbors, Myller, is the guy I was introduced to by Chris (the only Greek permanently living in Jeri) when I was looking for more information about the crossfit-type training offered in Jeri. It’s a small world, and Jeri is just a dot on the map!

Back to the landlord. On the day I came here, he explained that I could only have the apartment until the end of the month as he wanted to rent it on a daily basis for the high season (as everyone does around here, wanting to make the most of their season, of course). He said he would make me an offer for another studio he manages, but I should also look for alternatives. That was a bit of a surprise as I thought I could have it for 3 months before having to start looking for other accommodation. Anyway, since he told me that on day-1 I started asking around. So, a couple of days back he came with his offer for renting it until after the New Year’s, which I told him I would consider. In the meantime, a friend of mine here told me she has a contract for her apartment until March, but she is considering moving to Spain for a few months therefore I could maybe sub-rent it but she needs to check with her landlord. I have not seen her place, but the price is good and the location too, so I want to wait to see what happens with this before accepting or rejecting my landlord’s offer.

A bit of info about my studio. It is actually one room with a bathroom and kitchenette on the first floor. My bed is not a bed rather a mattress on a wooden frame, the bathroom has no washbasin, so I use the kitchen sink to brush my teeth etc. It is generally not maintained at all, the walls are full of holes and unused cables and the ceiling… well, there’s no ceiling the way you know it. There are roof tiles, which I can see (no proofing) so I can happily say ‘air-conditioning’ works perfectly, lol!

When I slide my wooden door open to get out (which has no lock btw but a sort of safety nail which I slide to prevent anyone from coming in) on my right side there is no handle or protection wall but the garden of the next door hostel, which means that if, say I am drunk or sleepy, I could easily fall off the first floor… lol (note to self, don’t drink too many caipirinhas or, if you do, don’t go home!)

So, here he was telling me that if I decide to keep the studio, he will build a little protection wall, he will fix the sink, paint the whole place, have someone spray the place to get rid of the cockroaches and insects and bring me a proper bed. Well, now this made his offer much more tempting! To be honest, the first 10 days I didn’t like it here and was happy to move to another studio, but if he does what he promised to do and I can have it all to myself and actually functioning as a normal house, it could feel like home.

A small parenthesis. On Sunday, coming back home from the beach, Myller, my neighbor invited me to a bbq in front of the house (on the street) as it was his birthday. I was happy to join and had a great time meeting some of his friends and our neighbors, not to mention the delicious lobster and meat I was offered! It was so nice to be able to communicate a bit in Portuguese and at one point I realized I could actually form a couple of whole sentences in a row. Proud me!! (End of parenthesis)

Today, talking to Angeliki on Skype I realized I’ve started feeling at home again. I went to the supermarket, got some stuff to clean up the house a bit and some food and decided I would spend the day in, doing nothing. Well, I wanted to watch movies. I haven’t had the time to watch movies since Canada and that was only a couple, so I’d be happy to stay.

And this is usually how the busiest of days starts! (and it was only 11am still!)

A friend paid me a visit at noon (and brought me the necklace featured in the picture above, which was an unexpected and so sweet gesture) and another person I met just the day before (Franco, a traveler from Chile visiting Jeri) invited me to go to the beach. By that time I really was in no mood of going out and I can say I was actually feeling like ‘shutting down’ and talking to no one. But. I remembered that every time I get like that, the best thing to do is get out of the house and resist the urge to be alone. So, I accepted his invitation and suggested we go to the Hurricane, an amazing hotel with an infinity pool on the quiet side of the village, where we could be pampered and have some good caipiroskas and snacks.

We ended up hanging out there from 3pm to 8:30pm and then had a burger before he would take the bus to leave Jeri to go to Pipa.

This morning, when adding stuff to my excel sheet of expenses, I noticed that in just 4 days it will be my 1-year anniversary of travelling. Many thoughts crossed my mind about all this time since I left the Netherlands one year ago, many memories and the faces of people that have come my way. I can only feel blessed to have received so much positive energy, so much unconditional help, so much support and kindness. These thoughts were the topic of all my conversations today, with Angeliki, Franco, Jimmy, with myself too.

No, I still don’t get any thoughts of going back to Europe, but I do feel I want to stay in Jeri for a bit longer. I think this second year of my story as the new Me, should be more focused on giving back. Giving back the love, the support, the caring, the positive energy. I am thinking of ways to do that and have already a couple of projects on my mind (plan A, plan B… etc.). I don’t know to what extent those are yet feasible, but I know that when there’s a will there’s a way. And I have a lot of will.

Laying like a lazy lizard in the sun all day is nice (when there’s no work to do, of course), but I realize there is more to life than that. I am more than that.

How was that for a day’s diary, Jimmy?

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