Mini break at Protaras

Good morning, I had an idea! The little sister messaged, a week before I was to finish my CELTA course.

Do you want to book a holiday apartment in Protaras for two days for the two of us to go the first week you are back? Sun, sea, swimming, food, relaxation?

YES, of course. I’ve been desperate for a holiday, I hadn’t had one since Christmas, I was overly stressed planning my last teaching session at the time and I was so tired I was still in bed on Sunday noon, this was just what I needed.

There was sun, sea, swimming and all the things she promised plus (unnecessary) drama and laughter. I vlogged the whole thing, perfect opportunity to start filming again. I’m a but rusty and because there was a lot going on in my mind, I spoke SUPER fast at times, but I hope you like it.

All the places we’ve been:

-Mimosa beach. A little bay hidden behind a hotel (where you can get drinks and food). Quiet and serene most of the time, perfect for a relaxing day in the sun and a swim in the clear blue waters and there is a diving instructor nearby if you are into it.

Light and Blue Marelia apartments. Bright, airy and inspired by Greek island architecture, set on the top of a hill facing Profits Elias church (gorgeous views from their terrace), reasonably priced, we loved these apartments three years ago when we first stayed and they did not disappoint this time either.

-Profitis Elias church. A beautiful little chapel on the top of the hill overseeing Protaras, offering incredible views of the city and the sea. We went at night and the steps were well lit, the ascent only took 5 minutes. It’s definitely worth visiting if you are in the area.

-Pahit Ice. One of the island’s local chains offering scrummy ice cream. I recommend their pistachio ice-cream and their frozen fruit yogurt.

Konnos Bay beach. A gorgeous bay situated between Ayia Napa and Protaras, one of Ayia Napa’s 14 Blue Flag beaches. Clear, perfect temperature water, waterports facilities and a great cafe overlooking the beach. Just stunning.

Souvlaki tou Soukri tavern. A quirky Greek tavern in central Paralimni (a 10 minute drive from Protaras) where all food is served on wax paper. Everything we tried was delicious, especially their fried courgette balls and chicken souvlaki. Excellent customer service, generous portions and great prices (we paid 19 euros for three souvlaki skewers, a sausage, a meatball/’soutzouki’, 4 courgette balls, salad, tzatziki, fries and water) though have cash with you as they don’t accept card. Oh there is an ATM and parking space at the central square, a two minute walk from the restaurant.

Andama tavern. A huge tavern in the middle of Protaras tourist area. One of the few in the centre that offers great, authentic Greek food. We tried their ‘Piatakia'(little plates), their version of tapas (smaller than meze) and everything tasted amazing, especially their Garida saganaki (prawns in tomato and feta sauce) and Politiko Kebab. A bit more expensive than we expected (we paid 40 euros for Politiko Kebab, fried calamari, prawns saganaki, salad, falafel and water) but great service and plenty of food for two, it was worth every penny.

I hope you enjoyed my video, I’ll try and make more over the next few months, depending where life takes me. Next one will be of Rhodes, since I’ll be exploring the island for a few days starting tomorrow.



Summer in Cyprus – Protaras

I’m on the plane, staring at the views of this weirdly wonderful world from above, listening to a beautiful I’ll be your mirror cover.

I’ll be your mirror
Reflect what you are, in case you don’t know
I’ll be the wind, the rain and the sunset
The light on your door to show that you’re home

I’m on my way to Southampton after 10 amazing days back home in Cyprus.

I wasn’t meant to go to Cyprus this summer. I went in May, for the little sister’s musical and I wanted to have a holiday somewhere else. Maybe a Greek island? Would my sisters be able to join me?

It’s not always a holiday when I visit home. And this time I desperately needed a proper relaxing break after all the stress I’ve put myself under the last few months.

I had a plan, a vague plan but it didn’t work out. They never do. So I thought I’ll go home instead for ten days, spend half of it somewhere near a swimming pool, a beach, some of the time continue exploring my little island’s beauties one by one and the rest of the time see friends and family. Will this plan work out?

Wednesday 29th of August

I finally fly home today. I’ve been looking forward to it since I booked my ticket a month ago. I can’t wait to get to the AirBnb the little sis and I chose for our mini family holidays, a modern complex with a huge swimming pool in a quiet residential area (and only a five minute drive from the nearest beach) at probably my favourite area, with the most gorgeous, unspoilt beaches on the island.

I got up early, had a cup of tea, packed the last few things, I double and triple- checked everything, an annoying habit that makes its appearance when my anxiety hits the fan and lingers for a while afterwards, and left for the airport early, in case there is any delay on the train or the bus. I may be late for most things, but not when it comes to flying, you probably know that by now.

I arrive at Heathrow well early, have a delicious halloumi and falafel wrap at Pret and sat on a bench people watching and praying for the second episode of Bodyguard to download in time so I can watch it on the plane.

It was an uneventful, smooth flight. First time I used Cobalt, a new Cypriot airline replacing my beloved Cyprus Airways and first impressions were great. Excellent service, comfortable, reclining seats and it felt great to hear some Cypriot before I even get to my little island, though I forgot how loud we are.

Sun, sea and happy parents

I spent, as planned, the first half of my holiday at Protaras, probably my favourite summer destination in Cyprus. Gorgeous, crystal clear blue water, unspoilt little bays and not as touristy and noisy as the neighbouring Ayia Napa or the centre of Protaras or commercialised as Paphos.

On our way there, I noticed a sign on the motorway, whilst I was driving, God I missed driving, of Cyherbia, a new botanical park at a nearby village. I should definitely check that out...

The AirBnb we booked was perfect. Modern, above ordinary clean, comfortable, large enough for five and it had everything we needed AND the host left a bottle of red on arrival. Ah the little touches that make a great host. You can have a peak here.

The swimming pool was just lovely. Large, clean, not too busy. We spent a large part of our day swimming, laughing, relaxing there. We had the most wonderful four days.

The first one, when all five of us, papa, mama and my best friends, my sisters were all together was my favourite. Rosie, the inflatable flamingo little sis and I picked the day before was a big hit!

Precious, rare moments, I’ll always cherish.


During our stay we went to two, Blue-Flag, organised beaches.

First, Trinity Beach. A little blue and white chapel on top of the cliff overseeing a gorgeous picturesque bay.

We spent very little time there as we went just to watch the sunset but I experienced one of those extremely rare moments when my mind completely calms down, the effect of the sea you see, the sound, the views, not thinking of anything else (that almost never happens) but looking around in awe, struggling to believe the beauty my eyes are witnessing, and for that 10 minutes I felt the absolute happiness.


(The little, rock-less, sandy bay, is on the far left, in case you look it up and my snaps confuse you).

We spent our last afternoon in Protaras at Kapparis beach, a stunning bay, perfect for a swim, and of historic or perhaps sentimental importance, or both. The nearest sea to the occupied part. If I were to swim around, I’d be in Varosia (Βαρωσια), the infamous Famagusta Ghost Town, one of the Top Europe Tourist Destinations before the 1974 invasion, which the Turks still keep sealed off since 1974.

I loved everything about it. The Beach Bar at the top that instantly reminded me of a friend who would have loved it, the crystal clear, perfect temperature water.


On one of our evenings in Protaras we walked down the main restaurant and souvenir area and after a delicious dinner (there will be a separate post on food of course) we needed a bit more walking to digest all the food so we walked by the sea.  The warm breeze, the sound of the waves, the beautiful lights, how not to love summer?

Protaras at night

If you ever decide to spend summer in Cyprus, even if you choose to stay somewhere else, I won’t blame you, it’s a tough one, there are so many great places, it’s almost impossible to make a choice, but it’s worth spending a day in Protaras. You won’t regret it.

How blessed am I to be born and raised in such a beautiful island?

PS. On our way back to Nicosia, I could not not make a stop at Cyherbia. I couldn’t stop thinking about it since I looked it up, it looked magical, and I’m glad I went, I had the BEST afternoon, I’d never expected what happened, coming up next!)


Hanging… and reset

A dirty plate on the dressing table stool, an empty mug on the bedside table…

It’s almost 2pm, Saturday afternoon, I just had some toast and coffee and I’m back in bed.

What a bittersweet but wonderful day Friday was.

Lunch saying goodbye to Charlotte, one of the craziest, funniest, sweet, adorable ladies I’ve ever met (who introduced me to Yoga with Adriene, without a question the best thing that happened to me in 2017), followed by a big group of us at Tapas taking over two of their central tables, chatting, laughing, on a sunny Friday afternoon after work. I missed all of us going for drinks after work… It felt like a reunion, I loved looking around seeing everyone having a good time.

Sad to see friends and colleagues leaving but happy I got to know new people I’ve haven’t had the chance before, and end the evening with a cider and heart to heart conversations with my brother. I miss seeing him every day, having a laugh in the office, walking home together after work…


Today I’m struggling though.

I didn’t drink much but a busy week at work, lack of sleep and not sticking to the same drink last night took its toll on me. I feel exhausted.

I can’t get out of bed, my body aches, my back is killing me. That’s what happens when I don’t do my yoga for a couple of days. My mind and body complain.

And the emotional hangover: at its worst. Scientists still cannot fully explain why anxiety and depression symptoms hit you in the face after drinking, imbalance of chemicals and nutrients in your body apparently. “At the cellular level, your brain is mad, agitated. And you just feel bad.” Susan Scholl, a health and wellness professor once stated. No shitting.

The thoughts were there I guess, the alcohol then decides to bring them up, exaggerate, go crazy and f**k you up.

The weather doesn’t help either. It feels like the longest winter of my time on earth… I miss the sun, the warmth, summer dresses and sandals, the feel of hot sand on my feet whilst running into the crystal clear cool water, red, sunburn face, beers and a cig at the beach at night, I miss summer…

I just got a voice message from Sheba, telling me about her day, chatting about everything and anything as we do every day. I love listening to her messages.

Today she is emotional. I’m emotional.

A lot to think about, a lot to do, but not today. Today I just want to stay in bed and not see anyone. The people I really want to see today and hug and have a laugh with are miles away.

That’s what I did, most of the day. A nice long shower, clean bedsheet and back to bed.

In the afternoon I message Artemis. She is coming to London in May, a mini break with one of my favourite people, at my birthday weekend. So, very excited. It’s been years since we did this. A holiday, just the two of us, wandering in London.

A couple of hours later… the little sister wants to Skype me. It’s almost time. It’s Easter weekend back home. The family is at the midnight Easter Service, they’ve just lit their candles with the Holy Light and the priest is about to sing the The Paschal troparion or Christos anesti, the Easter hymn every single person born and raised in Greece and Cyprus knows by heart. I just remembered, I posted a blog on Greek Orthodox Easter two years ago.

Χριστὸς ἀνέστη ἐκ νεκρῶν,
θανάτῳ θάνατον πατήσας,
καὶ τοῖς ἐν τοῖς μνήμασι,
ζωὴν χαρισάμενος.

Christ is risen from the dead,
Trampling down death by death,
And upon those in the tombs
Bestowing life.

I hum along. I wish them Christos Anesti (Jesus has risen) and we hang up. I’m emotional again. I can’t put in words how much I love them. I was telling Sheba about it on my message earlier. But I know if I start crying in front of them, they will. So I hold it in. For a moment I feel proud of myself for learning to control my feelings.

11pm. I just finished watching the Crown. I’ve learned a lot from this show, although today I didn’t pay attention, it was more of a background noise.

I want this day to end. I know I’ll be OK tomorrow, the emotional hangover will be over. Bedtime. I’ll finish this post tomorrow, I wonder how… I don’t even have a title. Inspiration has abandoned me today.


I wake up and go back to sleep, wake up and go back to sleep.

Is my bedroom door open? Terrified. No, it can’t be. Is it? I turn the light on, it’s closed. It was a dream, a really bad dream, I get them a lot lately. Brain overloaded.

9:30am. I’m awake and can’t fall asleep again. I check my phone. Easter messages from friends and my family and a voice message from Shebs. Then my phone rings. Is my star sister, Stella. She usually calls without warning when she had an accident. But today she just wanted to wish me Happy Easter. We have a laugh, I can’t wait to see her in a couple of weeks.

Today I feel better. I’m not as emotional.

I put my Spotify on, Hunny is This What Adults Do, Lauran Hibberd…

I don’t want a stroll on a Sunday and I’m a sucker for unhappy Birthday… But all my darling friends, I don’t feel OK, ’cause they are all having bunnies or babies and I don’t want the same… (or I think that’s what she sings)…

I giggle.

I message Shebs back, I book a hotel for Artemis and myself and after I finish this post, it’s me time. How much I need it I can’t say.

I loved my week off, three amazing days in Bordeaux and a lovely weekend in London. I loved being on the go, packing, unpacking, exploring, wandering, catching up with loved ones.

I find it hard to adjust to ‘normal’ life but I need to. I need to reset, that’s exactly what I’ll do. I need Yoga with Adriene, hours on my guitar, read a book, catch up with friends, write more, I missed writing, I already feel better writing this. What a cathartic, therapeutic experience it is for me.

But I also need adrenaline… make new friends, sing at the top of my lungs, run until I can’t breathe, dance until my feet hurt, try new things…

I think I may have come up with a title…

I’m ready. Whatever this week brings.

Χριστός Ανέστη to all my Cypriot friends and family.



Last day of summer.

I can’t believe is the last day of August already.

This summer went fast but felt painfully slow at times.

I went home for 10 days, I climbed Snowdonia for a local charity, Solent Graduation, theatre nights, 31 Yoga RevolutionSouthampton Pride, and Summer in the Square were some of the highlights (check my homepage for much more).

But it’s been rough at times.

Most people enjoy routine. I get bored. Every couple of days I change my route from and to work. I try to do something differently every day so one day doesn’t feel exactly the same as the last one. I’d do much more if I could afford it.

And is no secret I’m in desperate need of career change. I love Solent, I love my colleagues but what I do day to day is brain numbing. My mind craves for more.

But it’s not that easy to move on. I cannot just leave. At the end of the day it all comes down to money. Yes, money doesn’t bring happiness. But is the means to an end.

I cannot just quit and get experience in a brand new career path without taking a hit financially, a hit I can’t afford right now. And I don’t know exactly what I want to do next.

I love Social Media, creativity, I love writing, I love interacting with people, talking to people, helping in the community, I love being out and about and not behind a desk all day. But I have no ‘professional’ experience in any of these.

I do these at my free time or through volunteering for events through work. I make zero profit from any. I only do them because I enjoy it.

I’m no professional singer, or guitar player, restaurant reviewer, book reviewer or social media manager (I spent an unhealthy amount of time on Instagram checking out places, interior decoration and food, lots of food). And I’m no professional blogger. That’s why I haven’t blogged since Monday. I only blog when I feel inspired or want to share something. And any shops, brands or services I happen to mention it’s because I genuinely like them.

Anyway that’s my situation. But  I started to think that maybe…

Everything is as it should be.

Because it motivates me, it pushes me to make changes. And at the same time not rush into things just for the sake of it.

Because being in this position right now got me into Yoga that is now part of my daily routine and never fails to give my brain a break. It led me to learn more on Digital Marketing, I had one of the most motivating conversations on LinkedIn (thank you for the Irish Luck sent over!), inspiring conversations at the park with strangers, it pushed me to be more open and try things, it made me a better person.

And I have high hopes for September.

After my week in Italy and Friendsfest (I cannot wait!!!!) I’ll try my best to make more changes.

For now, I take every day as it comes. It is quite rare that a whole day will be bad. There are always small beautiful moments even on a crappy day.

And today is payday!!!

I already ordered my absolute favourite perfume, Roses de Chloe,  that reminds me of hot summers in Cyprus when I used to spray grandma Stella’s face with rose water (I was looking for this perfume for a while and only found it early this year), I’ve done all my holiday essentials shopping, getting a new book and got my Jaba hug 🙂

Today was a good day.

And everything is as it should be. For now.



What a summer it’s been…(lesson learnt: #nomoremissnicegirl )

Usually my posts have a positive, optimistic tone, but this one does not, well most of it doesn’t. But life is not always full of roses and you can’t always be nice.

It’s been a while since I last posted… I promised to myself I will only post when I feel like it, as the only purpose of this blog is to share lessons I learned worth sharing with everyone… I  felt the need to post a couple of times but when sharing through my blog or other social media that are public means everyone in the whole wide world can read and some things I only want to share with friends (that’s what’s FB for).

But anyway… after the bank holiday, summer is officially over!

It’s been one of the best summers I had in years…  or maybe ever… A big, fun, crazy adventure! Celebrations, birthdays, christening, nights in playing the guitar, reading, daydreaming, nights out dancing, crossing a motorway, jumping off a wall and sprinting through a bridge over the Thames, Jason Bourne style, to catch a Shakespeare play under the stars in central London at midnight, the most amazing time back home, sunny days at the beach, sunny lunches and picnics at the park, spending time with friends and family, making new friends, wandering around, music, always music, finding out more about British culture and life in general (thank you Donna!), learning new life skills such as how to jump start a car or change bulbs, lots of fun and laughter…

But summer is over! And it feels like an end of an era!

It’s been challenging at times but I feel better than ever…

And I got my confidence back! A couple of months ago I’d never imagine posting a video of me singing or playing the guitar let alone both (I’m novice at both as you can see if you watched my videos). A friend told me they would never be confident enough to do it and my response was “I wouldn’t either a while ago, but I spent years doubting myself and worrying what others might think. And it was not worth it”. If I want to post a video of me singing a song for my best friend because she had a bad day and I wanted to make her feel better and declare my love and support publicly, but someone doesn’t like it, or doesn’t like me so what? It’s human nature, we can’t and don’t like everything and everyone and not everyone likes us. And it’s OK. I’m not everyone’s cup of tea nor are you.

So here it comes the most important lesson I learnt over the last few months…

A couple of weeks ago I was lying on the grass at the park, had my headphones on, enjoying listening to my music whilst having my lunch in the sunshine and then this guy comes over, gets off his bike and starts chatting to me. I took my headphones off so not to be rude, but it was VERY obvious I’d rather be left alone. I hardly spoke to him or made any eye contact, my answers were short, I didn’t even ask for his name until he was about to leave just out of politeness but he still sat there chatting to me for 15 minutes. It wasn’t even an interesting conversation. In the end I had to say, after he turned the convo where he wanted to and said he was “looking for a partner to drink ouzo with (as if all Greek/Cypriot people only drink ouzo, what a cringy pick up line, don’t ever use that on Cypriots, it doesn’t work!)” that I was not looking for an “ouzo-drinking” partner.

He wasn’t rude but he should have left me alone. It was OBVIOUS I was not interested. And it spoilt my lunch, it spoilt my ‘me’ time enjoying the sunshine and the music and watching people, making up crazy, fun stories about them, it just spoilt the moment.

After that and other incidents recently (worse than the one I mentioned above), which I cringe even thinking about so I won’t mention, I decided I won’t take anything from anyone anymore even if it means being rude, which I hate doing but it’s sometimes necessary.

I don’t know if that’s across the whole country but people here are too polite most of the time (not always) to show their annoyance or disagreement and are afraid they might come across as rude or inappropriate if they are honest and say what they really think even when chatting about everyday life issues.

So lesson learnt!! DON’T TOLERATE ANYTHING THAT YOU DON’T LIKE/ ANNOYS/UPSETS YOU.  When someone is being annoying or creepy tell them off, show it. Just do it. Don’t ask for help or if anyone offers to help you deal with it, just say no and do it yourself. You don’t need anyone to protect you, because you won’t always have someone to do that, learn to deal with it yourself, it’s a basic, essential life skill!

Don’t get me wrong, I hate moaning and I’m nice, friendly and polite most of the time but there are limits.

I live on my own, I have no family close by and when things break or I accidentally hurt myself-all the time-(accident proneness/string of bad luck whatever it is the result is the same) or I get ill or run out of milk or money, I’m the only one responsible and the only one who can help myself (yeah I don’t like asking for help either, I am too proud!). So I won’t take sh** from anyone and I’m not willing to let anything or anyone spoil my moment. I won’t be nice if you are mean to me or sleazy or make a weird comment or you behave inappropriately.

Lesson I learnt again these last 2-3 months: Learn to say NO! Only hang out with people you really want to and do things YOU want to. Life is too short to compromise and waste time on things you don’t really enjoy just to be nice! If you don’t want to reply to that message or go somewhere, then don’t. And don’t feel guilty. Everyone does it! If you feel bad being completely honest (although my advice is just be honest!), make up excuses everyone does and have a universal meaning everyone will get such as: “I’ve been very busy”.

And last lesson for today: “age appropriate” is nonsense (not to confuse with being immature!). I’ve been given valuable advice which I appreciate on how I need to start thinking about my future as I’m getting older and do things people at my age should do like buy a house (and other related “life goals”). But I won’t. I can’t sacrifice my present so I can have a better future which I might, probably not even get to live long enough to enjoy. Sad but true…

The last 8 months have been a big adventure, not a single dull moment and I wouldn’t change that for anything else. I don’t ever want to go back to how my life was a couple of months ago. So I’ll take my chances. I love taking risks and that’s what spices up my life. Who knows what the future holds. I hope mostly nice surprises!

I want to AGAIN thank all of my friends, old and new and my family. You can’t imagine how I appreciate and value the support and love you show me. I love you all so much words can’t even describe and those of you I am far away from now, know that I really miss you and can’t wait to see you again soon (maybe sooner thank you think!).

So that’s what I learned over the last few months. I learned to be feistier and not tolerate anything I shouldn’t. And I got my confidence back.

I am definitely not the person I used to be even a couple of months ago. And I am glad. I’ll never be that weak, scared person ever again. I rarely say “never” but in this case I’m sure. That wasn’t me. That was a person I let others turned me into, but not anymore. I’m never going back to that. If that means I might sometimes come across as rude or cruel or selfish or crazy then let it be.

So here’s to the last 3 months of 2016! A lot of exciting things coming up and I can’t wait! I hope the last few months of this year are amazing for all of us!

PS Love you to the moon and back Shebz!!! I am sure you are having an amazing time but I already missed you very very very much! xxxxx


Love you all! x