One Hundred Miles Away From Water

The lady for whom the precious stroy was written told me that she was afraid of water and I would never get her out on a saliboad… Then next night, she got this

The walk was cool, and I gave you my jacket to keep you warm. You protested like you always do, but you looked so tiny and cute snuggled down inside that oversized coat, that I would have done it just for the pleasure of the view…

The mountain side was steep, and the path just barely wide enough for one at a time, but the grass grew so short and even that one wondered whether it was the goats, or the weather, the height or just the variety of grass. The sights from this height were breathtaking, and at regular intervals we stopped, sat in a rock. ledge, or just grass mound and stared. The others in our party had gone into the city to shop and eat and just run around, but we had already spent a day staring at the old churches and the cool mosaics and shopping held no pleasure.

I reached around and pulled the almost hot tea from my knapsack, poured you a capful, and gently touched your leg as you sipped at the liquid. The valley and the road to the city were spread out far, far below us, and I felt your hand holding my shoulder a bit tightly as we looked down the mountain. Just below us were plateaus carved out of the mountain, growing fields of hay. I mentioned that if we slipped it was just a short roll into the fields, and turned around.. You already knew what the naughty next line was, and laughed, so I did not have to say it, just arced up to kiss you lightly, then, pulling on your arm, helped you up and started on our way again.

The directions that the bartender had given us had been sketchy at best, but I had seen most of the landmarks that he described, and it would be easy to retrace our steps, although to tease you, I mentioned that maybe we should have been dropping breadcrumbs along the way…

Ahead lay the large rock that had been described to me, and although going around the bottom edge looked easier, I took the advice we had been given and went over the uphill edge. It took a good 5 minutes to get around the rock and out onto the large ledge, but it was well worth it. I could see off to the left where the rock had fallen away and the bottom edge path would have become a bit scary, and treacherous if you did not watch your step. I reminded myself to tip the bartender very well that night. I held out my hand to help you down onto the ledge and only then did we turn to see what we had come all this way for… It was breathtaking…..

We could now see the panorama from the east side of the mountain, and peaks spread out before us and to the right going on endlessly as if we had reached the end of the world and this is where the sky was held up. I could see where some of the ancients got their legends, and I was ready to believe it myself. To the center left, there was a widening gap in the range, and, as promised, through the light haze, could be seen the green Aegean sea, just a raised color between a far off pass. I turned to you and said “See, I promised I would get you 100 miles from the water”, and you smiled and hit my arm lightly, but at this height, and with the world spread out below us, you never let go of that arm.

I cleared a spot on a rock at the back of the ledge and we sat down on the cold stone. The sun was very bright, and quite warm, especially back here out of the light wind. I tucked you into my shoulder, and arranged the bottom of the large jacket around your legs. You put your head on my shoulder as you had so many times before, and I did not need the sun for warmth…

“A camera would not do this justice you know”… either the truth, or covering up for the fact that I had not brought the camera along.

“I’ll remember”… a simple phrase from you, but this time the absolute truth.

There are times in life when true and wonderful beauty is laid out before you. This was a time, not to play tourist, but just to appreciate what amazements lay in our world. We just sat and looked for 15 minutes. Silence was like a blanket here.

I felt you leg cross over mine, and I wondered if you were cold… “not now” you said and snuggled closer. I wondered if we were more than a mile up and chuckled at the thought… You gave me that quizzical look, and I just shook my head. I did want to go there, but this was close to perfection and I was not ready to break the spell.

Another half hour went by with no, or very little, movement on either of our parts, neither of us taking our eyes off the view. I did notice the sun was going over to the other side of the rock and finally mentioned that we should start back if we were going to go all the way in full light. You gave me a hug in reply, and a small kiss (well, maybe not that small, but I do not want to titillate the reader) and I wondered how much more time we could spend here…

Once again we took the top route off the ledge, and this time, as we walked back, we did so much slower than our pace out, and hand in hand, side by side. I was beginning to wonder if I could afford the tip that bartender deserved…..

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