Do Places Change or do We?
Some years ago, my husband and I went to stay in Crete for some months, on our search of where we could relocate to. Though lovely enough as a beach resort, Paleochora didn’t seem to provide the key will elements crucial at least for me: community, a venue to play music, a place to dance (even Greek dancing, something I learned years ago in New York, is hard to find in Greece except at a festival) and a way to be of service.
The first days, eager to meet the people living there (both Greeks and internationals) mostly I heard: “If you want to live in this town, then find a way to be on your own. If its community you seek, you won’t find it here.” We’d already paid for a month’s rent, and just settled in to having a nice time. The weather was splendid, and soon my husband and I were in a good routine of writing in the early mornings, and exercising and swimming in the afternoons, and me playing some music for myself in between.
Maybe just knowing we wouldn’t be moving there gave us a sweet sense of time and freedom. And life flourished anyhow as it tends to when you don’t try too hard. Many evenings, in the balmy cooler air, we’d walk through the colorful streets. Getting to know the various street musicians, they seemed to like when I spontaneously danced to their music. Including one guesthouse and Taverna run by a lovely Scottish woman who on Saturday nights has a good Greek trio playing. And then she invited me to come to her place to officially dance, to inspire her guests up and out of their seats. The musicians, who already knew me smiled at the idea. The evening was a huge success and at the end, all the people surprised themselves by dancing (I only did easy steps so no one would feel foolish). Even my reticent husband joined in!
Invited to come every Saturday to get the crowd dancing, we booked to stay another month. So you just never know when the life you’ve been trying so hard to find, finds you.