With one more stop at sea and one overnight on land left to go on my grand European Adventure, it is only fitting that the climax of this trip just happens to be on my "bucket list". For quite some time now, I had placed Santorini Greece near the top of my so called bucket list. You can rest assured that I will be on that first tender to go ashore in the morning upon our arrival.
I have been so blessed already to have visited so many coastal areas of Italy, France, Croatia, the country of Montenegro and the upcoming stint in Greece. In the process I have already captured about 3500 images with my cameras and so very many more with my eyes. I really feel that my works from here are some of the best of my long journey into the craft of photography and art. The biggest reason I would want to return home would be mostly to print and mount some of the new works I have done. Then to see them hanging in the gallery downtown will be a way for me to relive and remember this past month forever.
Throughout the four cruises I have just had, it has certainly been filled with so many wonderful memories. I have met and encountered some very dear people to me now and will have a spot in my heart that will seem empty from the loss of them in my everyday life. For the first time in a very long time, I made myself available to people like I typically do not. I enjoyed times goofing off, partying and talking about silly stuff with Captain Alan, that I haven't done in many years. And there was some very wonderful personal times I spent with people I met or the crew/staff of the boat that will reside in my mind forever.
For a while, it seemed like I was living in a movie, so many events and moments just seemed to fantastic to believe were really happening. I know throughout this that I will be returning to Tennessee a somewhat different person. Maybe those that know me and that I encounter in life there will not notice the change, but in my own mind I will know so very much more about life and what it offers.
Besides the unending amount of visual orgasms I have experienced, I can smile at the remembrance of things like having a steak in a street cafe in St Tropez or the Champagne and Pizza in Cannes, France. And who could ever forget celebrating Alan's birthday in the crew bar with him that includes stories not for public consumption. Of course the clubbing action with friends in the old city of Kotor, Montenegro at night and the couple glasses of wine I had in a cafe in Trogir, Croatia.
Then there is the walk to the castle atop the city of Kotor that was just incredible to experience with my awesome two singing friends. And that day in Hvar.... And I really can't even begin to express the emotions, feelings, events and everything that went along with those few days. Certainly they are marked in my mind forever with the grandest of smiles I can ever produce.
You may ask... "Is there anything I didn't like about the adventure?"
Hell No... Even on the couple days like this where we were at sea all day, I took advantage of by catching up on processing images and writing out thoughts such as this.
Yet still to happen is a day on Santorini Island followed by a day and an overnight stay at the King George Palace in Athens, Greece. Then on Sunday I will be catapulted back in time 7 hours to face real life again. Having to leave behind this reality of a fantasy I have been living in the last month. And of course with Facebook, Email and Viber, I will be able to keep in contact with many that I have met these last four weeks.
It has also been a joy to me to see the many people that have enjoyed my images and notes I have posted over the last four weeks to Facebook and the gallery of images on www.thephotographyexperience.com