The Blue Star Patmos arrives at Mandraki, the port of Nisyros at 11pm. On the way there we had pulled into Symi and had noticed the post office van disembarking, offloading boxes and mail bags and then boarding again and we see it do the same again here. Cars are lined up at the port and a small group of travellers chomping at the bit behind the metal barriers waiting to board. The extraordinary life of a ferry unfolds before our eyes.
This is my fourth visit to the island but it has been seven years since I was here last. It will be the first time for my sister and her partner who really wanted to see the volcano. The ferry times and the fact that my sister gets seasick on the catamaran means that all of our ferry journeys over the next 18 days will be via the Blue Star Patmos. It also means that we only have two nights and one whole day on the island so tomorrow is going to be a busy day!
I had booked my sister and her partner into the Romantzo very close to the port. I had stayed there before so knew it was a good quality basic hotel and perfectly located. My husband and I were booked just a bit further down the same road at the Haritos Hotel. I hadn’t stayed there before did realise once I got there that I had used their geothermal pool last time I was there.
When we arrived at the hotel there was nobody in reception. We scouted around but couldn’t find anyone to check us in. Whilst we waited, we noticed groups of men coming and going through the hotel. It felt a little odd but at the time I didn’t really think more about it. Anyway, it didn’t look as though anyone from the hotel was going to materialise so I found the telephone number of the hotel on Booking.com and phoned them. The lady that answered told me that we were in room 17 and that we would find the key in a bowl on the reception desk. And sure enough there it was. What a shame this hadn’t been communicated to us before we arrived. Not to worry. We made our way up to the room where we collapsed in exhaustion.