Halloween in Corfu Greece
I was going to spend Halloween in Rome but then I got an amazing opportunity and a great deal to go to Corfu, Greece with Euroadventures. It was a last minute decision, and although I had some near-death experiences, it was well worth it.
The travel to Corfu, Greece took over 24 hours. We had to take a bus, a train, a cab, a bus, two boats, and a bus to get to the Pink Palace, our hostel we were staying in. When we finally got there it was Friday morning. I quickly signed up for the ATV safari tour that was going to take place in an hour. This was one of the best decisions I have ever made. It was one of the most fun times I have had on the trip. Riding an ATV is such a fun experience, especially throughout Greece looking over the beaches and the beautiful scenery. The tour guides were very fun and took us to fun places and on cool paths! I was absolutely obsessed with ATV riding. I was actually pretty good compared to most of the girls and I felt quite proud of myself.
Later that night when we got back, everyone showered and got ready for dinner. We played a few card games at the bar before dinner and our group became instantly very good friends, even though I had just met them a day ago. We all sat together at dinner, and the food was quite good! After dinner we played a round of pool, which I ended up losing =/. Pink Palace then got pretty fun and everyone was dancing all night and having a great time. After dancing some of us went down to the beach to look at the stars. It was absolutely gorgeous. You were able to see so many shooting stars, I loved it.
The next morning I went on a booze cruise, which lasted all day. There were about 90 people packed on a boat made for like 50. (The boat didn’t even look like it could hold 50). We all sailed off and made our first stop at rocks to go cliff jumping. There were two rocks you could jump off of, a 70 foot one and a 50 foot one. Of course I chose to do the 70 foot one. However, to get to the top of these rocks you had to actually scale up the side of the cliff…real rock climbing…with no rope, ladder, or anything…in a bathing suit and sandals. It was probably the stupidest decision I have ever made in my life. It was quite hard to find a place to put my hands and feet and I was wet and slippery and clinging to the side of a 70 foot cliff…not my wisest decision yet. It was taking everyone a long time to jump and I couldn’t understand why. My plan was to get up there and just jump without thinking. Well I then got to the top of the cliff and looked down, my second mistake. If you ever stand on top of a 70-foot cliff and look down to see that is where you will free fall to, it is pretty freaking scary. So before I could scare myself I jumped. The technique is: half way down the jump you have to make a pencil. You cannot start off as a pencil because you will lean to the side. My third mistake: HALF WAY DOWN MY FREE FALL OF 70 FEET I HAD NO IDEA WHERE HALF WAY WAS AND I WAS NOT THINKING ABOUT PENCILING I WAS THINKING HOLY SHIT I AM FREE FALLING. I penciled too late and landed somewhat on my side. When I fell a friend immediately jumped off the boat into the water because I fell so terribly. As I made my way to the top of the water I thought I had broken a rib or popped my lung. I wasn’t thinking about swimming I was thinking about feeling my body parts. A friend came over to help me swim back. When I got out of the water I immediately had a bruise on my right thigh extending from my knee to my upper thigh. It was about a foot long and six inches wide and instantly purple. I had a huge bruise on my right ribcage and I had hurt my neck. Such an awesome thing to say I did but I would never ever do it again. I was in pain for a week. I was lucky though because the girl who jumped off the 50-foot rock before me actually broke her back and had to stay in Greece to get back surgery a week later. Yolo I guess
Later that night was the toga party at the pink palace. I was in so much pain I did not even want to go but I rallied and went. The hostel gave everyone pink togas to wear and we ate dinner in them and then danced in them. Half way through the night the people who run the hostel put on a show for us. We all sat in a circle around the dance floor and they did tricks with fire, danced a Greek dance, lifted up chairs with their feet, and broke plates. They went around and broke a plate on everyone’s head. They even made a girl volunteer to sit on the ground in the circle and they broke 8 plates over her head at once. It was actually a pretty cool experience!
The next morning I was in so much pain I just wanted to lie out on the beach and tan. Clouds were out, however, so that plan was a little hard. IN addition, Corfu had so many bees at this time of year I could not even sit still without being attacked by a bee. I am allergic to bees so I was constantly worried that I was going to get stung. My friend Joe asked me if I wanted to rent ATVs and go off on our own. I said yes, even though I knew it would hurt a lot and I would be in pain. We went through all of the paperwork, got o out ATVS and set off. Joe asked me which direction I thought would be best and I chose right…mistake number 1. We got about five feet and both ATVS shut off, we had to go back and get other ones…mistake number 2. We had been on the ATVS for about eight minutes and Joe said lets try this path (we were going to do a bit of off roading.) I was excited so I said sure…mistake number 3. We went up the path and it was a hill going up. It looked like a path that was going somewhere but it did not. We got to the top of a steep path and it went nowhere. We then had to maneuver our ATVS around in this small space so we could go back down the hill. I went first, only riding my break down the hill. I thought about walking it, but I seemed to be doing a good job and having a handle on it. When we got farther down, my ATV was going a bit faster because it was steep. A slight turn in the path came and the path became narrower. The side of my wheel went off the edge that was covered in grass. It started rolling down the side of a cliff and I had to jump off. I tried to grab the back of it with my hand to pull it back up but I did not even realize how heavy an ATV can be! I watched it roll a bit but I thought it would stop and Joe could help me bring it back to the top…WRONG. It rolled for about a second and then dropped 50 feet off the side of a cliff. I saw it smash onto the highway upside down, break into so many pieces and actually bounce off another cliff off the side of the highway. I was in absolute shock. My mouth dropped. I didn’t make a sound; I could not even believe what I just saw. Did this really happen? Did I just wreck a $2000+ ATV, did I almost just die? Did it really just fall off two cliffs? I looked at Joe and we both started laughing! You would think I would be crying but I did not believe what I just saw. I ran down to the bottom, slipped down the dirt path and scratched up my legs and everything and ran to the side of the second cliff. I could not even see my ATV. It flew down 50 feet and landed in someone’s backyard that I could not even see! Two men saw the ATV fall and stopped to find the driver. They saw that I was okay so they tried to help me look for my ATV. They couldn’t speak English and I couldn’t speak Greek and we could not get our points across so they just left. Then it all started to kick in. I started shaking and crying. We were sort of far from the hotel, far enough for me not to walk. I walked back to a nearest gas station and Joe took his ATV back to the hotel to get someone to help us. When he got to the hotel he said to the receptionist after they asked, “back so soon?” he said my friend rode her ATV off two cliffs. Their faces I heard were priceless.
I sat at the gas station for 45 minutes waiting for someone to come. I was crying and bleeding and shaking. A nice woman at the gas station was from England and spoke English and she talked to me for a while and offered me something to clean up and some water. When the people from the hotel came I got in the truck and showed them where the ATV was. They were shocked. How did this even happen? They had to climb down the hill and drive down someone’s driveway around the corner to try to find this ATV. When it came back up it looked much better than I had actually anticipated. The frame was still there, the wheels were still on. It was missing all of the lights and was pretty banged up and all the wires were torn though. I let Joe go off and do more ATV exploring and I went back to the hotel. I immediately started hysterically crying because it was becoming more and more real.
I walked down the beach and saw one of the Euroadventures guys and he was very very nice to me. He helped me get some ice for my hand that I hurt and he calmed me down. He then went to the front desk with me while I got the bill and walked out to the ATV with me to assess the damages. Thank goodness for him because I felt very alone and he made me feel a lot better. They told me it was about $750 to replace the parts. That absolutely sucked. I could think of a lot better ways to spend that money. However as many people point out $750 is a good price to pay for still being alive.
For the rest of the day I really just relaxed, and thanked god I was alive. It was time to leave in a few hours to go to the long 24-hour+ ride back to Rome. The ride home was a bit painful, especially sitting in airplane seating with all of my bruises. It was fun though, we played some card games on the boat ride back and I enjoyed spending time with all of my new friends.
I still keep in contact with my new friends and I have hung out with them a few times while I was in Rome. It was one of my most favorite and beautiful and adventure packed trips I have ever been on. It sucked it had to pay so much money but hey I got a great story out of it. The men from the Pink Palace said that this was their record-setting week. They have never had someone get so hurt jumping off of the cliffs before (the girl who broke her back) and I was in the worst ATV crash that they have ever seen. YOLO?