Adventures and rebranding

It’s been more than a minute since I put up anything new in the blogosphere. No excuses. I just wasn’t motivated. Mainly, I was bummed out at the lack of opportunities I was having for trying new things. With so many closures and limited re-openings and changes in how to access events and experiences, I ran out of enthusiasm for trying new things. 

That’s a bummer because stagnation definitely will not increase my luck.

However, change is inevitable. We can choose to fight it, thereby leaving us in a rut, or we can embrace it. So I’m going to embrace change and rebrand my blog a bit from Try Thirty New Things to Tam’s Tales. What that means for readers is that I’m still going to try new things and report on them here. And I’m still going to encourage you to try new things. I’m also going to be more consistent hanging out here, which means I’ll be writing about other interests beyond trying out something new. Much of what I will focus on will be authorly stuff related to writing and reading. But I’ll be open to writing about ideas that might be a bit controversial or more opinionated than I like to be on social media where entertainment is the order of the day. In other words, this space is going to be a little more eclectic than it’s been. I’m excited about that. 

Having said that…

While the plan is to rebrand this blog, today’s focus is on some recent adventures that added some things to my list. Last fall, CruiserMan and I were able to exit the country and spend about three weeks in Greece. While we’ve visited there before, this time we added two islands we hadn’t seen to the list. We spent time on Mykonos, the Ritz of the Greek islands, and a day on Delos, an island that’s been uninhabited for 2,000 years. Quite a contrast, yeah? While on Mykonos, we got a kick out of window shopping and marveled that people actually spend upwards of $1,800.00 on a pair of sun glasses and $1,000.00 on a scrap of cloth to cover up an equally expensive scrap of bathing suit. The yachts at anchor in the harbors told a story of another world. No wonder billionaire romance is so popular. After our Mykonos visit, I have all kinds of material for writing one.

Delos, however, was more impressive. At one time, it was the banking center of the Mediterranean. In some of the buildings that archaeologists have uncovered, the divots are still visible in the marble from where the iron bars of the windows of the banks were lodged in the rock. Indoor running water and sewer systems show a modern civilization that appreciated the same amenities we do today. The configuration of the streets and buildings of the main city on the island are the same as modern Greek cities. What is left of the temples and stoa—the building housing the agora or marketplace—indicate massive structures that could be seen from miles across the sea. The ancient amphitheater where plays in honor of the gods were performed held 5,000 people. It would be a perfect place for my fictional rock band Balefire to play today. Who knew a deserted island could be so vibrant?

http://The Lions of Delos
http://Amphitheater on Delos
Sing For Me, Book Two of the Balefire Series, at the Amphitheater on Delos

Working Vacation

While we were on Santorini, an island we visited before in 2019, I was actually attending a writing retreat through Insiders Tours, so it was a working vacation. One of the fun things we tried one evening, though, was a fish pedicure. It sounds kind of gross to have little “kissing fish” AKA Garra Rufa nibbling your dry skin from your body, but it was an excellent experience. It tickled and watching the fish was oddly soothing. Plus, my skin has never been so smooth as when I stepped out of the tank. CruiserMan and I enjoyed the experience immensely and highly recommend it. 

Kissing Fish pedicure

While we were in Athens, we visited the oldest distillery in the city, Brettos. When you’re sitting at the bar, you feel like you’re inside a lava lamp. All the liqueurs the distillery makes are kept in shaped bottles and backlit on high shelves. Since they make liqueurs from everything from apricots to limes to the sap from a gum tree, the colors are surreal. The specialty drinks one can enjoy there include a limoncello and ouzo martini that I can’t recommend highly enough. That was probably the most delicious martini I’ve ever had. Of course, one does have be open to lemon and licorice together, but for my palette, they make a stunningly lovely drink. 

The inside of Brettos looks like a lava lamp

Limoncello and ouzo martini at Brettos

The other new thing we tried while in Athens was catching a movie at an outdoor theater. This isn’t a drive-in movie theater. It’s a massive cement projection screen in front of an open space filled with tables and chairs where one can watch a movie while having dinner and drinks with friends. We enjoyed the most recent James Bond flick, No Time to Die, with our friends Aleka and Kostas, the owners and guides for Insiders Tours. 

Outdoor theatre

Change is inevitable

It’s the end of February, and I’ve only tried ten new things so far this year. That only sounds impressive until you remember that my thirty new things year starts on May 1, so I have two months in which to find and try twenty more new things. From where I’m sitting, that has a low probability of happening. Not saying it can’t, but I’m not counting on it either. Even at ten, though, I’m still three times ahead of the average person who only tries 3-4 new things a year. It’s always good to aim for above average. As of this writing, I can add another new thing: rebranding. I’ve yet to do that, but now that my blog is evolving into something bigger than where I began, I think I can count that. Perhaps there’s hope for nineteen more. . .

Until next time,


Tam DeRudder Jackson

Author of the Talisman Series and the Balefire Series

Love is worth the risk.

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