As Alex and Aurelie drove me up the winding mountainside in Akrata, I sat in awe. I had found paradise... or, at least a Greek version of it. Freda moved to the holiday haven twenty years ago to escape city life in Athens. She couldn't have picked a better spot. Purple trees dotted the large green slops. "They're called Judas trees," Aurelie informed me, "because they only come out around Easter." Glimpses of the Mediterranean came into sight from time to time as we'd switch-back. It was as if each angle were competing for the title of 'best view'.
We pulled up the driveway and through the gates into a yard filled with grapevines and olive trees. Upon exiting the car, Alex grabbed my suitcase, led us through a doorway into a courtyard and opened the door to the guesthouse. "And this is where you'll stay," he stated while urging me inside.
Having to pry my eyes away from my temporary abode, we walked into the main house so I could meet the woman who had already accommodated me beautifully. "Thank you so much for letting me stay here," I immediately exclaimed. "Uh, huh," Freda mumbled and then stole a quick glance at the kitchen table dressed for a banquet, asking: "Are you hungry?"
It was then she became my new favorite person.