When my best friend, Kailey, and I started planning our trip to Greece, we decided to fly in and out of Athens and travel to Santorini and Mykonos. Santorini is known for its amazing views and Mykonos for its night life, so we thought by going to both we would get the best of both worlds in our two weeks on the other side of the world.
The morning we were to travel to Santorini via ferry, we were over the moon excited. We took a cab to the dock and got some good local snacks to bring with us. We found the right ferry and boarded with no problems.
We knew the trip would take a few hours so after about 2 hours on the ferry we started to get anxious to get off the ferry at our destination. The only problem was, they were saying the departure ports in Greek. We thought we heard Santorini, so we gathered our belongings and prepared to get off the boat.
The owner of the hostel we had booked said he would be waiting with a sign with the name of our hostel on it at the port, so we knew what to look for when we arrived. We were brimming with excitement as we waited for the boat to dock. As we walked off the boat we began to search for the sign, we walked up the row of awaiting people with signs twice and could not find our hostel.
That is when panic set in. I started to hear people offer us hotels in cities I had never heard of when they saw we didn’t have someone waiting to pick us up. I then realized, we had gotten off at the wrong stop, on the wrong island.
We turned to head back to the boat and saw the motors had turned back on and they were preparing to pull up the ramp that we had disembarked from. With our hearts racing we ran as fast as we would with all of our luggage back to the boat. Funny enough, we were not the only people doing it. This was probably one of the scariest moments of my life, and it was kind of a blur as we sprinted to the boat. Luckily, they saw us coming and waited for us to drag ourselves and our stuff up onto the boat. I think I cried from relief when we were back on the boat.
We went back to find our seats, somewhat embarrassed. We then decided that it would probably be a good idea to ask a crew member if we were in Santorini before we left the boat. Lucky for us though, the next port was Santorini. After successfully finding our ride and arriving at our hostel, we began to relax and excitedly plan what we were going to do with our time in Santorini.
Looking back on that experience, I laugh. But at the time, I thought it was anything but funny. I was scared shitless. I felt completely helpless, something I absolutely hate feeling. It is just not in my personality. I like to be in control of everything in my life, and this situation taught me that this is not possible. Right after it happened I was mad at myself for letting something like that happen. I was supposed to be the responsible one between my friend and I, and we had done something pretty stupid. But now looking back I realize I wasn’t being stupid, I just made a mistake. I was forced to be uncomfortable and out of my comfort zone, and I think this experience taught me that this was okay. Life happens and sometimes you just have to go with it.