Summer Days in Aigina
It feels like summer will never end. Yes, classes have started, homework is due, and test dates have been scheduled, but when you’re living on an island with a view of the clear, blue sea from your window, the idea of fall is as foreign as Greece was to me two weeks ago. The sun beams bright overhead, fishing boats sway in the harbor, and the beach is just a five-minute walk from school. It’s beautiful. Definitely not the motivator I need to study for my Greek quiz tomorrow, but oh so beautiful!
I’m spending this semester on the island Aigina (pronounced eh-gee-na), which is just off the coast of Athens and accessible by ferry. Although we’ve only been in Greece about a week and only on the island five days, to me it seems like the people of Aigina do live in a perpetual summer. They can always enjoy a scoop of gelato as they stroll along the sand and most stores close everyday around two o’clock so the workers can take a siesta. They spend the afternoons relaxing on their little balconies or porches and windows and doors are often kept open all day, with little concern for thievery. Even the food feels like summer— fresh tomatoes, olives, feta, pita bread, juicy peaches, and lots of fish. The usual cuisine of a college student is hard to come by, as you don’t find any shelves stocked with ramen noodles or frozen pizzas, and there isn’t a fast food chain in sight.
Winter feels like nothing more than a dream here, though as I understand it, the weather does eventually turn chilly and when we leave at the beginning of December, we might even be pulling on our coats. As an avid lover of both fall and winter, I am looking forward to those cooler, breezy months. Because even if I can no longer go for a swim, I know that here in Aigina, even if the warmth fades, the feeling of summer never will.
This article appeared in a September 2011 issue of Drury University's Mirror newspaper.