Sailboats glide along Santorini’s caldera near the village of Oia.
Santorini days are bookmarked by some of the most majestic sunrises and sunsets I have ever seen. During the ten marvelous days we spent on this legendary Greek island, our only task was just to decide how to spend the time in between. And so we filled our agenda with a cooking class, learning how to make Cold Tomato Soup with Cheese ‘Ice Cream’ and Santorini Fava. We swirled glasses of mineral-rich Assyrtiko and Athiri wine; and in hot springs, we washed off the volcanic soil we’d picked up on our feet during a promenade on a still-active volcano. We also whipped up Greek-inspired meals in our studio apartment, strolled lanes in quieter villages like Firostefani and Imerovigli, and soaked up the island’s fascinating history through visits to the Akrotiri archaeological site, and prehistoric museum which is studded with Akrotiri finds. (Akrotiri is known as the ‘Minoan Pompeii’ and predates Pompeii by more than 1,500 years.)
In the late afternoon sunlight, the small shrine’s mosaic-adorned walls shimmered like precious gems. As I shifted my footing and perspective – moving only mere inches at a time – different vignettes were illuminated by the vibrant rays. The Buddhist shrine – on which the cut glass portrays Buddhist imagery – is one of twenty structures in the Wat Xieng Thong monastery compound in charming Luang Prabang. The temple is not far from the Mekong River.
‘Twas a lovely manner in which to be greeted in our newest home away from home city: a tangerine-colored sun swiftly slipping behind the mountains, slow boats gracefully coasting along the Mekong, and merchants carrying hundreds of baskets of oranges from the boats to trucks waiting on the quay. Ah, lovely Luang Prabang!
Tuktuks pass by the exterior of Phnom Penh’s Royal Palace compound, just before sunset.
The opulent structure was built in the 1860s.
Photography & text © Tricia A. Mitchell . All Rights Reserved.