Updated date:

The Vacation – Greek Island – Kathryn’s Choice


The long gleaming white cruise ship idled next to the long white pier, beside long white pathways. Bare legs moved leisurely down the gangplank. Short shorts and sandals, sunglasses and sunscreen adorned those descending. Shuffling feet walked along worn pathways toward the bungalows. Each guest wore a corded string around their necks that held a key. The energy of youth prevailed.

Reaching the complex of rooms, people checked their key numbers, some veered left and some right along warm corridors. When they found their cubbyholes they tossed in their light travel bags carrying bare essentials and went to look for fun.

In the open spaces were tables protected by umbrellas or awnings. The tables held loaves of bread and bottles of olive oil for dipping. Bottles of wine, in multiple shades of gold and roses, adorned the tables. The sound of laughter and general gaiety decorated the air.

Kathryn stopped at a table and tore the heel from a loaf of bread, she spilled garlic infused olive oil onto a plate and dipped her bread. The taste was fresh and enriching, even magical. She spotted people heading down a staircase and decided to follow. In a few moments she found herself in a populated little area, of sand and rock, where she was overdressed in shorts and casual top. Her blush subsided by the time she again reached the top of the stairs.

She twirled the key around her neck with her fingers, as she enjoyed the setting sun and the rich colors dancing in the crystal blue waters. She watched as people seemed to skip along the walkways in their anticipation. The food galleries were filling up, so she walked in and sat down at a table with others she met on her cruise. Dinner was seafood, breads, and wine. Torch lamps were lit as the sun fully set in the Adriatic.

Kathryn licked her fingers as she got up and wished her dinner guest a good night and fulfilling vacation, which brought peculiar looks from her dinner companions. She emptied her wine glass and walked up the pathway towards her sleeping nook.

The sleeping nook was a small space. Barely enough room to stretch out. For a brief moment, she thought about the money her father had spent on this. But what caught her attention were the ten, glass front mailboxes in front of her. Each had a highly polished wood frame and a keyhole. She moved to her knees and peered into the first one, then the second. She was aware of the key dangling from her neck. She scooted down looking into the third then the fourth mailbox window.

Her attention was broken for a moment as ‘oohs and aahs and female giggles, and male bluster’ drifted through the corridors. Still on her knees, she all but pressed her nose against the glass as her gaze was caught by a great library and a man sitting at an enormous desk stacked with old tomes. The shelves reached out-of-sight in all directions. She reached for the key around her neck and twirled it nervously. Scooting around, she peeked out the entrance of her nook. Some nooks were lit up and some nook entrances were dark. She turned again and pressed her nose against the glass. Then inserted the key and swung the door open. The light from the mailbox spilled out into the hall.

“Hark,” it was Librarious, the man at the desk. He did not hear him rustle, but sensed it, “Not another word out of you, Thesurious.”

This made Kathryn smile.

Through a door at the far end of the room a short man led another man into the room. “I have located Professor Pimbleton.”

“Thank you, Nerdious,” called Librarious. “Come girl,” he waved toward Kathryn.

Kathryn looked at Librarious, Thesurious and Nerdious who were all wearing white togas. Professor Pimbleton wore brown corduroy trousers, an unkempt white shirt, a checkered vest and a worn corduroy suit jacket, out of style for decades. He held out his hand to Kathryn, “I am your guide. Are you ready?”

Before the word ‘Yes’ was fully formed on her lips, she and the professor were whisked into a swirling wind. Opening her eyes, Kathryn looked out on a great vista of sea and clouds. She was in the rigging of a three masted sailing ship. She wore a pair of breeches tied at the waist and calves with a bow knot and a scarf about her hair. The wind blew the remaining wisps of hair outward behind her. The air warmed her through and through. The speed of the ship exhilarated her depths.

At the far end of the same mast in the rigging, was the professor, now strong and young. He too was barefooted, with breeches tied at waist and calves. His shirt billowed as it caught the wind, and there was a belt with a sheath that housed a silver blade.

“Where are we?” She called.

He smiled ear to ear and raised his hand to his ear.

“Where are we?” She called again.

He moved toward her along the rope that he perched upon. When he thought he was close enough, he called to her. “This is a ship of souls. It is returning from God’s College. You have chosen to be part of the escort.”

She moved closer to Pimbleton. “Tell me more.”

“We will make our delivery to the Island of Kythria. We may face Illyrian pirates along the way, so keep a sharp eye on the horizon.”

Pimbleton’s smile fascinated her. She looked out along the horizon of the Adriatic. She looked down at a different perspective of the ship's deck with men tightening the lines and cleaning the decks. She looked with intrigue at the Captain, behind the helm, wondering who exactly steered the ship of souls.

Pimbleton, showing off, climbed upon the yardarm and sat. He held tight onto a rope and took in what he viewed as the creation.

Kathryn stood on the ropes looking out at pure majesty. “Look, she lifted one arm and pointed. Ships!”

Pimbleton returned to the ropes and gazed in the direction that Kathryn had pointed.

“Pirates aft,” he called. Looking down, he had not received any attention. Kathryn and Pim, swung down the ropes, hand over hand. “Pirates,” they called. Second in command on the bridge looked at the two young mates, then looked past them towards the horizon.

Pim and Kathryn quickly climbed to the crows nest and resumed their watch. The captain surveyed the opposition, judged their capable speed based on their sails and determined the ship of souls could not be overtaken. Nevertheless, he stationed his contingent of Marines both starboard and port.

“I’ll be back soon,” Pim told her, as he descended the riggings.

Kathryn stood and watched him go. Then watched the three ships that were following. She felt assured that the ships were not getting closer as time went by and realized what the captained had accessed hours ago. In a very short time Pim returned carrying a small basket. Inside were bread, and wine; imagination and mystery; romance and rhapsody.

“Too bad this has to end,” Kathryn lamented.

“It does not have to end immediately,” he replied. “Look at that island, we are going to pass fairly close. It will be close enough to swim. No telling what we will find there. Do you want to go for it?”

A most mischievous smile came to her face.

A few hours later their replacements arrived in the crows nest. Kathryn and Pim climbed down the rigging. They walked along the starboard side. At the exact same moment, they turned and gave each other a reassuring smile and both gracefully dived overboard toward adventure and the unknown.


Eurythmics - Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This) (Official Video)

Carole King So Far Away 1971


mckbirdbks (author) from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas on February 13, 2018:

Hello Shy - Ever so sorry to hear that your husband is again in the hospital. Sending best wishes for a suitable recovery. You can turn those emotions into words for us. As always, thanks for the blessings.

Shyron E Shenko from Texas on February 12, 2018:

I would love to go on that adventure with Pim.

Glad to see you writing again. Hubby in the hospital again so I guess HP thinks I should be writing at the same time.

Blessing always

mckbirdbks (author) from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas on February 05, 2018:

Hi Paula - My job is done here :)

Suzie from Carson City on February 05, 2018:

Oh yes you do know what's funny! You just cracked me up with the comment about your mother!....spit out my coffee!

mckbirdbks (author) from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas on February 05, 2018:

Hello Paula - Maybe it was my mother who told me, "Limit our pleasures." It is all a blur at this point.

mckbirdbks (author) from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas on February 05, 2018:

Hello Gypsy - I felt certain that most of us could use a break from winter, in all its forms.

Gypsy Rose Lee from Daytona Beach, Florida on February 05, 2018:

Enjoyed this. Made me think that we must hold on to our dreams, live life to the fullest and always expand our horizons otherwise we will not have lived at all.

mckbirdbks (author) from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas on February 04, 2018:

Hi Paula - See, I am just not a good judge of what is funny. Happy Sunday.

Suzie from Carson City on February 04, 2018:

Limit our pleasures?? Oh hell, I knew there was a valid reason that I don't (and never will) read the bible!

mckbirdbks (author) from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas on February 04, 2018:

Hi Paula - I am no expert on this subject. (Or any subject.) I think it is written in the Bible that the followers must limit their pleasures. Luckily for all of us, that HP has no such fine print in their t.o.s. (This is supposed to be funny, but, I can never tell.)

Suzie from Carson City on February 04, 2018:

OH my poor bro.....My allegiance is widespread and I have enough love to share with all my favorite writers. Where is it written we must limit our pleasures? Never fret. Variety is the spice of life. If that were not true, I'd have been murdered long ago, not to mention, pretty lonely.

Speaking of old songs; "If you can't be with the one you love....love the one you're with." That's my wild side, which should not surprise you bro, since it runs in the family!! :)

Now that I know we're GREEK, it all makes sense!! LOL

mckbirdbks (author) from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas on February 04, 2018:

Hello Martie - We can all dream. Right. A Greek getaway would be nice. A nice bungalow in Italy would suit me just fine. (Recently priced at $32,000 USD) It would be a great starting off point for parts unknown. Thanks for the visit.

Martie Coetser from South Africa on February 04, 2018:

Mike, I admire your imagination! Living on a Greek Island is surely everybody's dream.

mckbirdbks (author) from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas on February 04, 2018:

Hello Bill - I never heard of a stronger allegiance than between you and Paula. I think you are safe. Your stories that don't veer into the dark side are among the best on HP. That is proven by the legions of followers that flock to your pages. So, not to worry.

This story is about a little escape to the sunshine and away from the troubles we all face. It is no wonder that it is well received.

mckbirdbks (author) from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas on February 04, 2018:

Hello Peg – Thanks for noticing my gag names. That, to me, was part of the charm of this story. Ha, I have a weird sense of humor. This was a fun, and quick write. Lucky for me, as my attention is pulled in too many directions. The Ship of Souls set my imagination on fire. I am trying to avoid starting a series.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on February 04, 2018:

I see Paula has switched allegiance. She always told me my stories were the best. LOL My sister has stabbed me in the back....but....she's also correct. I hate it when she is.

mckbirdbks (author) from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas on February 04, 2018:

Hello Paula – Oh, oh, oh, a Greek peasant girl, or is it a Greek pleasant girl? Funny how these DNA test seem to enlighten so many of us how go down that road. I kid with my sister with the sentence, “When I used to be Italian.”

Thank you for your nice comment about my story. This one was easy, the readers were invited down a gangplank of a cruise ship disembarking on a Greek Island. Who would not want to follow along, just in case something interesting might happen. Also, it is cold all over the country, so a little sunshine and light conversation would be appreciated by all.

Thanks for the visit, nice comment and the hugs

Today's music has nothing to compare with the music from our generation.

Peg Cole from North Dallas, Texas on February 04, 2018:

How delightful to find another Mckbirdbks adventure on the high seas this morning! Wonderful! I loved the names Librarious, Thesurious and Nerdious and Pimbleton did a fantastic Clark Kent transformation from Corduroy Professor to Fabian on a ship. I can imagine this Ship of Souls will carry many more to their destinations of choice. Smiling. Love the music, too.

mckbirdbks (author) from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas on February 04, 2018:

Hello Genna – Happy Sunday to you. Sounds to me like we all own ourselves a great vacation. Sunny days and breezy evenings. Thank you. Carol King is a long time favorite of mine and Sweet Dreams seem to fit the story.

mckbirdbks (author) from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas on February 04, 2018:

Hello John – The Greek Islands should be on everyone’s lists. I have not been there, but we can dream about them.

mckbirdbks (author) from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas on February 04, 2018:

Hello Verlie – Yes, right about now a Greek vacation sounds just like the thing to do. The Mediterranean and Adriatic are beautiful sights.

Suzie from Carson City on February 04, 2018:

Mike...You create the best stories ever. I feel carted away & dropped off smack dab in the middle of it all. Reading your work is an actual adventure.

I can't even imagine the breath-taking beauty one would discover on the Greek Islands. OH! Which reminds me, my first cousin had her DNA studied by Ancestry.com....& reported to me that on the family side we share....(her Dad & My Mom are siblings) we are predominately "Greek"....which was a total shock to us.....pleasant but shocking!

BTW...both songs you added happen to be 2 old favorites of mine. Thanks for the nice Sunday read. Hugs, Paula

Genna East from Massachusetts, USA on February 04, 2018:

Ohhh..I want to go on that "vacation" and the sail the possibilities into the unknown -- filled with an imaginative sense of adventure. I love the way you write, my friend. :-) Great music, by the way.

John Hansen from Gondwana Land on February 03, 2018:

What an enthralling and imaginative story, Mike. Your writing never disappoints. I always wanted to visit the Greek Islands .. maybe in my dreams.

Verlie Burroughs from Canada on February 03, 2018:

Ooh, whisked away on a Mediterranean (Adriatic?) dream holiday. Lovely, smiling. What a treat Mike. Thank you!

mckbirdbks (author) from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas on February 03, 2018:

Hello mar - Thanks for stopping by. Kathryn chose wisely, for her vacation into the unknown. What an adventure indeed to sail along in the rigging with her eyes on the horizon. It took as long to pick the music as to write the story.

Maria Jordan from Jeffersonville PA on February 03, 2018:

What a lovely treat - you're welcome, by the way ... LOL!

Kathryn has so many choices ahead of her - what an exciting adventure she is embarking on with Pim into the unknown.

Love your song choices - listening now. Hugs, Maria

Related Articles