Sep 28, 2013

Words for Wednesday

'Words for Wednesday' is a writing prompt held by Delores at Under the Porch Light.
Use some or all of the week's words, write a poem or a story or a fragment, and visit Delores' current week's prompt to let her know you've joined in.

This week's words are:







Here is my story:

Between the beaches of Perissa and Kamari on Santorini lies the stark white rock called Mesa Vouno. 'Vouno' means mountain, but it's a hill. It can be climbed in an hour, if you're young and fit, which I was back then. I climbed it one day early in the summer season, when I had hours between shifts at the bar where I worked. I wore my hiking boots and carried a daypack whose contents I don't remember but were probably a book, a chocolate bar and a bottle of water. 

The sun was hard and bright, and the limestone scree made the climb tricky in places. There was a path but it was easy to lose. It was hard going, but despite the heat I felt good. I liked to be alone and I liked to walk. The trek over this strange, scrabbly white hill was exhilarating. 

At the top, I stopped to catch my breath and enjoy the view. I was alone on the summit and could see Perissa on one side, Kamari on the other, and behind me the island's only true mountain, Profitas Ilias. On the beaches there were people, but up here there was no one. I was gloriously, wonderfully alone.

I shuffled closer to the edge of a steep drop, and looked for the easiest route down. The climb up had been uneventful, but climbing up was easy. Climbing down was hard. I scuffed the loose rock with my foot and a sudden tumble of stones clattered straight down the drop. In a moment I lost my footing and flailed wildly. A spasm of terror. I twisted and landed on my stomach, sliding down; my hands grabbed rocks that moved with me. The crack and clatter of tumbling stones was loud - louder than my shallow breaths and my own blood pounding in my throat. I seemed to slide forever, but it was only a few feet. I lay still for a moment, too scared to move, then sat up shaking. My pants were dusty and torn at one knee. My palms and chin were grazed painfully. 

I stood shakily and looked around me. There was no one else. I was completely, utterly alone.

fitzgabbro/Flickr Creative Commons

(This is a climb I did do, many years ago, and I was all alone - but there was no mishap. I did have a moment though, climbing down the hill covered in loose rock, where I realised if I did fall, there was no one to help me.... This was in the days before mobile phones.
Oh, and Mesa Vouno is actually partially limestone - I wasn't sure but thought it might be. Confirmed in this geological map of Santorini).


  1. That had me holding my breath. Great job.

  2. Delores is right. Ruby-Mae and I salute you.

  3. Thank you very much to all three of you!

  4. I was so afraid you were going to tumble all the way to the bottom! I love this line-"a book a chocolate bar and a bottle of water."
    Really, what more does a girl need?
    I've heard that Santorini is a very pretty place.
    This is a wonderful story.

    1. Thank you! Yes I agree about the daypack - all necessities covered!
      Santorini is a beautiful, magical place. I still miss it sometimes.



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