Crete is a staggeringly beautiful place (as this picture of the old harbour at Xania shows), suffering from tourists and a heat wave (in June/ July 2000). Even the locals were complaining about the heat. Strangely, they were not complaining about the tourists. The only complaint they had was there were not enough of them! There were various theories about the reason for this, including the counter attraction of watching the European football championships.

Not long after I took the picture above at Xania there was a race across the harbour by a group of swimmers, similar to the one in the Guinness advert.

We stayed at quite a nice hotel called the Julia, supposedly in a town called Rethymion, but actually a fair way out of the old town and in a village called Platinas (or Plane tree).

The hotel was run by a guy called Vasilas (pictured with Katy) who could have been a character out of a tv comedy. His mission was to get us to spend as much as possible in the hotel and most of what we bought (for example the wine) was made, grown or caught by his relatives. Vasilas tried to run a quality hotel.

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