For Whom the Church Bells Toll, They Tolled for Me!
I woke very early on a Sunday morning in Oia. To let Rebecca get some needed rest, I decided to go out and grab a coffee and see if I could find some fresh baked treats to bring back for breakfast. While I struggled to find a bakery, let alone one that was open, I was treated to an amazing experience that I won’t soon forget.
I’ve mentioned in more than one post that rising early and walking the streets of a new town is a special treat. Ones gets a completely different view and perspective on the life of the city or town by watching it wake. Whether it’s in a big city like Brussels, an ancient walled city like Dubrovnik, or a sleepy cliff-side town like Oia on Santorini, there’s much to be seen in the early hours.
As I walked through the twisty narrow white paths of Oia, I watched as restaurants and cafes opened for business, the tourist shops began to put out their tschotskes, and just a few other people take in the moment. A few blocks away I heard church bells ringing and went to investigate. Expecting a view of a nice church I was instead treated to a beautiful square where on one side was a simple but charming white and blue church. What I did not expect was to see a very old priest actually ringing the bells himself using long ropes that draped up to the bell tower! As you can see in the video below, he wasn’t just clanging one bell, but rather multiple bells with multiple ropes creating a beautiful sound that seemed as if it could be heard throughout the island. After the ringing was complete, he shuffled slowly back into the church with the help of a small boy, completing an unexpectedly private and memorable moment that I remember vividly to this day.
That moment is one of the reasons why I travel and a great reason to explore during the early hours, wherever you may be.
Night Views of Santorini
Santorini, especially Oia, is a very special place at night. The lights and buildings play so well together creating a very romantic and peaceful mood. There were so many little tucked away places at night that seemingly everyone could find a spot to be quite and reflect on that day that passed. The winding passageways, stairs and walkways gave us an endless supply of routes to explore that it seemed we never saw the same spot twice!