The first time Oliver had too much wine on Santorini, he teased with Craig about building a bookshop. Now we have too much wine, and tease Oliver and Craig for actually doing so.
Like a beautiful Frankenstein, Atlantis Books is seemingly standing on her own feet now. Although guided by Chris and others from very afar, she’s feeding off of the trials and errors of new idealists now. There’s even a manual, or Bible if you will, on how to feed and bathe her. With weeks behind the till, days unpacking boxes of books, hours in front of the computer, and endless initiative, she guarantees to give back, whoever steps over her threshold with open eyes, a sense of wonder. Fundamentally, a wonder of why and how the fuck “they” created this place. This wonder is you disbelief hitting a wall of realized dream, really. Although you didn’t believe it could happen, and still don’t know why or how it did, Atlantis Books is standing. Personally, I’ve felt this wonder a few different times here: when I saw Quinn’s stone ladder again since the last time on an afternoon in 2004, when I tried to pay a simple bill at the bank and it took eight bus tickets, three faxes, and help from people of four different countries, and when I ate a thick piece of warm baklava after a long day. This is real life.
Who cares about the inexplicable why and how at this point; it’s still here providing cheap white wine and poetry readings on the house. Really?
Something’s fishy. Well I do admit it; I was damn ready to go home, ready to say goodbye to the old Greek men who have enjoyed the summer of ladies at the shop, to the tourists who wonder where the English books are, and to the lack of shady trees. So, I got the hell out of there. Bye-bye Oia.
Now I write this under fluorescent lights, with a sweatshirt on because the dorm’s AC is set on 60 Fahrenheit. But up, up, and away! to bigger and better things like studying, and lobbying, and networking! I’ll be the change I want to see in the world! surely I will… but once I do that, can I go back to reading for pleasure, to showering in the evening to clean myself before the day’s first glass of wine, and to watching the water ripple past Ammoudi’s island?