1. what is greece to you?
Greece is an idea. And by idea I basically mean that Greece is all about the language, the greek “Logos” (language and logic combined); it is all about communicating. Also, Greece is home. I see it as an extension of my living room.
2. tell us one place we should go this summer in GREECE
Go to Filiatro beach. It is my favorite beach on my favorite island, Ithaka. The energy is divine there (but you have to go off-season otherwise it is packed and loses its charm). Go to any beach, actually. If the waters are bluegreen and there is only a canteen in sight then you are there.
3. the best things in life are…
The things you share with love.
4. what songs has the sountrack of your life?
Any song from all of the albums of my favorite greek artists, Foivos Delivorias and Arletta.
5. hungry? in which resto you should take your friend from abroad??
One of my choices would be “Thalassaki” (a “nouvelle” greek taverna in Ysternia), but this involves taking a day trip to the cycladic island of Tinos. In Athens, I would choose any place that combines quality greek “meze” with great view. I would gladly take my friend to “Kuzina” in Thisseion (the corner table on the terrace offers a splendid view of the Akropolis and the menu is inspired). Still, my first choice would be to cook for my friend myself. Greece is about homemade food.
6. a hotel that made you feel like home?
Some years back, I arrived in Koufonisi without any type of reservation. It was impossible to find a room. I slept on the beach, and it was the absolute 5-star experience. (Actually the night sky was beyond starry.) The next day I managed to find a room, the place was called “Galina Spitakia” and I remember it to be a very “homie” and simply elegant place, very clean and traditionally decorated. Also, a few winters back, during a ski trip in Parnassos, I stayed at “Xenonas Generali” in Arachova, a very hospitable place with yummy homemade breakfast, ideal for couples.
7. your next trip will be … where?
In Greece, I would love to take a road trip around the Pelopenese. (Abroad, I daydream about going to San Francisco again.)
8. your secret of having a great time … tell it now …
When travelling, never say “yes” when what you really mean is “no”. Do as you please, especially when on vacation, because you deserve a little time off without anyone else telling you what to do and deciding on your behalf. One important secret when travelling is to pack wisely. It seems minor but you’ll need far less than what you think you will. So, with minimum luggage, a good read and your loved one, there are no secrets whatsoever. Relax and enjoy.
9. five things of greece you cant live without
1. Writing in greek.
2. The view of the Parthenon (it works as a compass).
3. Watching a film in any open-air cinema, while smelling the jasmine blossoms.
4. Greek summer. And not just because of the generous sun (here, eating a whole watermelon with a spoon is considered normal activity).
5. Swimming in the green waters of the Aegean (or the Ionian).
10. which is your favorite spot of the city you live?
I love the mountain of Ymittos. I go there very often, mainly alone, in order to reset my mind while watching the sunset. It takes me less than five minutes to get there by car but it really feels like an escape.
Katerina Esslin is all about communication, writing and sharing ideas. She is a published author (known for her so called “one-minute novels”) and also a freelance copywriter and a blogger. Her 15-year corporate past (since she used to be a creative director in advertising) might as well be her future but lately her focus is on literature. These days she is looking forward to watch the premiere of a theatrical play that is based on her latest book. Her most visited blog is Έσσλιν Έσσλιν είσαι εδώ.