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Greek Workaway: Living on the Fragrant Island of Chios

Arriving late in the night at the smallest airport we have ever seen, we were greeted by our kind host Yannis who came to pick us up. After having our first true Greek kebab on one of the side streets of Chios town, we headed to our new home for the next 3 weeks. About an hour of driving up and down the mountains on narrow curvy roads, we arrived on the north side of the island, a few kilometers past the town of Volissos.

The air was filled with the most unique blend of a sweet fragrance that I have never smelled before. After getting to know the island a little more, I assume this mixture of fragrances to come from the citrus trees, mastic trees, and countless types of flowers.

On our first day of work, we headed to one of our hosts' large gardens, about 10 minutes from the house. The garden was magical - scents of citrus wafting in the air, butterflies playfully flying from flower to flower, and ripe pomegranates, cracked open from the sun, sparkling in the sunshine. The olives on every tree donned a thousand different shades of green and dark blue. The dog that watched over the garden didn't have a name so we decided to call him "Skillos" - the Greek word for dog. In his joy at seeing us, he managed to always get our clothes dirty before we even started working. Bryan figured out that carrying a water bottle was the trick to keeping him from jumping on us!

Simi's first day on the job consisted of collecting and cracking open all the walnuts. There was nothing more peaceful than being out there in the sunshine collecting these brown gems and then seeing the magnificent perfection in their resemblance to the human brain. How marvelously mother nature has designed them! How lucky we are to live on a planet that provides such delicacies to fuel its inhabitants with energy!

The second day Simi got to collect pomegranates to later make fresh pomegranate juice with. Cleaning out these pomegranates was a joyful but time-consuming task. Four hours later we were able to make three bottles of freshly squeezed pomegranate juice - so delicious!

The beach village of Limnia where we lived was an oasis of peace and calm. Even though it gets much busier in the summer, when we were there in October, the harbor was relatively empty. A few locals could be spotted every now and then drinking their coffee in the morning and playing cards at night.

Most of our days during the three weeks on the island were spent working outside in the olive groves, harvesting olives. This was a labor of love amidst such a beautifully peaceful setting. You can read more about our olive harvesting experience here.

Greece: The Land of Cats One of the fascinating things about Greece was the amount of cats we saw. Every town seemed to be filled with hundreds of cats lurking behind every corner. Some were cuddly and just wanted some love while others didn't give a hoot about our presence.

Each morning presents an infinite menu of choices for how you can perceive life. You can continuously choose anew. Perhaps one morning you may awaken with such a love in your heart that it shakes up the core of existence itself. Perhaps you could revel in the fulness of life in all of its expressions..from the smooth texture of the pebbles on the beach to the smell of honey that fills the air as the flowers dance in the breeze. To not only breathe but to be breathed. To know thyself as a co-creator of this life, your life, humanity's life. To trust in the process. To know that your perception is the veil that separates ordinary from wonder-full, mundane from bliss. To smile deeply from within as inner guidance arises, leading you to the next full immersion in the here and the now. To embrace the contrast, understanding that everything you do not want is allowing you to define where you do want be. You know how to get there. Your heart knows. Life knows. Open up to it. See its wonder. That is all life desires - to see itself in everything. For it isn't enough for the beauty of life to exist, you must be there to see it, just as you remain an inextricable part of it. You are the all, reflecting the all...even as you are looking out from one point of consciousness where you are at the center of everything that is perceived. There is nowhere to go. It is a return back to you. A return to consciousness. A return to love. You are that love. Feel it. Be it.


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