About endings and beginnings.

The most annoying thing about endings is that they come too soon when you don’t want them to. This is widely known and very obvious, as time flies by fast when you spend it in great company and in a great place. And so, my stay on Paros is coming to an end – only four days left on the island, and at this time next week I’ll be in a bus to the airport, partly sad about leaving, partly excited about my next destination.

During the past two months I have managed to: loose my passport and make a new one, see Athens, eat fresh figs from a tree for the first time, teach 29 students, learn some new tricks, kitesurf in 45knts, get in an accident, try a surfboard, see a sea turtle, make new friends and see old ones, make my first vid, get interviewed for national TV, decide a few important things, eat the best cheesecakes from the best bakery on Paros…

…and the biggest achievement so far, the number of sea urchin spikes in my feet in 2012: ZERO πŸ˜€

The season has already ended and practically no one is here anymore, so it does not feel wrong to pack my bags and go. But the thing is, I already got used to everything here, to the apartment, to the surroundings, to all the sheep I see every morning from the kitchen window… it feels very comfortable and home-like and when I think I have to trade it for something new and unknown I am not that excited to do so. But I know very well that I ALWAYS get this feeling, every single time, but as soon as my feet land on a new ground it all goes away and all that stays is hunger for new and unknown.

This time I’m gonna spend in Egypt around 2 months. I’m staying in Hurghada again, but hopefully I’ll be able to go to Safaga, Luxor and Marsa Alam as well as I have some friends over there whom I want to see πŸ™‚ And yes, this time it will all be different and no, I’m not gonna be an idiot anymore. Compared to Paros, Egypt is not the windiest place on earth, but that does not bother me really, especially that I have a little vid project in mind that has nothing to do with wind or water… When you know you’ll be kiting in a month and two and four and more, your point of view on some things changes greatly πŸ˜€

It’s nice to finally be on the right path.

May wind be with you,
Suzana

I KITE IT VIDEO #1: Another Day In Parosdise

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA! It’s here, IT’S HERE!!! My first video ever, straight from sunny and windy Greece! There’s a lot of ranting, some riding and maybe one or two closeup shots of sheep… πŸ˜‰ It was so much fun while shooting, and even though it’s nothing “super pro”, I hope you’ll enjoy it and maybe consider visiting us on Paros next year πŸ˜€

So without further ado:

I started shooting this video very late in summer when the season was practically over and the island almost completely deserted, so I did not manage to capture the usual atmosphre and liveliness of Paros when it’s in its prime… I guess my talking about it will have to suffice πŸ™‚ Next video will be from Egypt and this time I’m gonna film from the very beginning and focus on local lifestyle and the real life over there… so there’s gonna be less me, more other people πŸ™‚

Big thanks go to all the people who made this vid possible.

filming: Alex Tetsis, Sandra Schnegg, Zuza”Suzana” Czaplinska, Joanna Dee
editing: Zuza “Suzana” Czaplinska
music: Work Drugs – Dirty Dreams

Thanks for all the support:
George Georgoudakis
PAROSKITE.GR

you can follow my adventures more closely on the FB page:
I KITE IT Facebook

May wind be with you,
Suzana

I’m gonna be on national TV and shooting a vid is fun!

Oh boy, oh boy, where do I start? πŸ™‚
So, the national TV. Okay.

So yesterday a group of Polish journalists from one of the major Polish national TV channels suddenly appeared in our school, asking for an interview about Paros. They wanted to know about our wind conditions, the school and kitesurfing in general… and since I’m the only Polish person in Paroskite at the moment, they asked for my participation. I was out on water and shooting some footage at that time – lycra, boardshorts, wet hair, water dripping everywhere etc… not exactly the perfect state for an interview, but my boss dragged me out of water, they attached some cables and this little funny square microphone to the back of my shorts and pushed me in front of all those huge pro cameras… All the filming crew was very nice though, so despite the fact that it felt a bit weird I enjoyed it a lot πŸ™‚ After the interview they took some footage of me riding on water, then gave me their card and told me that after they release the episode about Paros on TV (December) they will send me a DVD as a souvenir… and after that they packed all the cameras and microphones into their van and -POOF- they were gone.

Lately I’ve had so much free time I didn’t know anymore what to do with it. It was windless for a whole week (for the first time since I came here!) and on top of that my shoulder was screwed up pretty badly, so I couldn’t really go and do anything active… In the end I started playing with my camera, filming this and that around my house just to kill time and forget about the pain. One thing led to another, I got back on water yesterday (yay!) and my friends filmed some more scenes of me riding… and I think I will make a small edit out of all that. It’s pretty fun to walk around with the camera and film things, so I’ll just continue for a while and see what comes out of it. My riding is still as lame as ever, but who cares, shooting a vid is fun! (…and my boss said I can take all the new 2012 equipment for the vid if I want. Not that this is the reason I want to make the vid. Or maybe a little. Okay, a lot. Best Kiteboarding GP c-shape kiteys all for MEEE, in all sizes I want~!)

Some screenies below πŸ™‚

May wind be with you,
Suzana

Water is your friend. Dirt roads… not necessarily.

Wow, it’s been some time since I last posted something… Greece has been treating me good, for the past 2 weeks it’s been mostly get up, eat breakfast, bicycle to school, teach a few hours and then ride ride RIDE. It was warm and windy everyday, with a few occasional clouds here and there as the September weather is finally kicking in. So basically, it’s been good and it’s been everything I could want and hope for. I think I have finally progressed in my riding, it really makes a huge difference when you can ride consistently everyday… I got a few pictures from Anny Barlow, a very talented photographer who’s also my crewmate at Paroskite πŸ™‚ You can check out her other pictures HERE. Unfortunately I had only a few minutes to ride back then (and then I had to teach when everyone else was photoshooting…damn), so that’s only some raleys from the warm-up, but at least I can finally prove that I actually DO kitesurf sometimes… πŸ˜‰

I had an accident today while bicycling to school, which left me with my right shoulder, elbow, hip and hand raw. The brake in the bicycle broke as I was making a turn on a dirt road, the bike lost its grip, I fell headfirst into the stones on the road and the bike fell on top of me. Hurt like hell, but after a quick rescue action from my friends I’m fine now πŸ˜‰ It’s a good thing the wind stopped blowing yesterday and won’t start again until next Friday, because I have a week to make sure the wounds heal… Gotta be ready to ride on the first windy day after all πŸ˜€

Apparently bicycles are not safeat all. Poo poooo.

I’ll have a lot of free time this week, so expect some non-kite related updates… I went on a short trip to Naxos last week and I still have something to say about Athens as well… So until next time!

May wind be with you,
Suzana

Aliki, a place where time stops sometimes.

Since the wind has been down today for the first time in a while, I begged my boss to give me half a day off and decided to finally go to Aliki and hang out there for a bit. I found an old bicycle at school and took it – one of the brakes doesn’t work, the pedals make weird noises and the chain creaks like it’s about to break, but the bike serves its purpose all the same and helps me move around a bit faster. There is something positive in using an old, rundown bicycle like this one, it does fit the ever present atmosphere of ‘simple life’ around here…

My high performance cruising machine… move around town like you own it!

Aliki is a small town close to Pounda. It’s one of those quiet family-oriented places, with tiny restaurants on a boardwalk, colorful playgrounds for children and with boats, big and small, parked everywhere in the little port next to the beach. It’s a perfect spot to grab your book and a cold can of coke and just sit on one of the wooden benches and read. And the best part is the sunsets, when the water lits in all shades of gold and the boats seem to shine like little lightning bulbs. You can’t help it but just stop whatever you’re doing and stare, long and hard, until your eyes get watery from all the brightness around. I like beautiful places. I like to BE there, see it, breathe it, touch the golden water with my bare feet. These are little things, but they matter. And I wish I was a good photographer enough to share it all with other people who can not be there in person.

On Monday I’m going to Athens to apply for a new passport. I’ll have a little time to walk around, see the city and finally visit Acropol. I’ve never done it before, because I’m always carrying all my kite gear with me when I pass through Athens, but this time I’m gonna go sightseeing for sure. It is a bit lame after all to be in Athen so many times and never really see them… πŸ˜‰

Below are a few pics I took today. I don’t have much time to take any pictures when I’m at school, but maybe next week I’ll actually TRY…

May wind be with you,
Suzana

Greece is as I remember it

Greece is one of those places that are always sunny and warm during holidays. I’ve been on Paros since Tuesday morning and it’s just such a nice change from Poland. I can finally walk in a bikini all day long and teach in warm water, with just my short 1.5mm wetsuit on. When I ride, I ride in boardies and lycra, while in Poland I always had to have a long wetsuit and still it would feel a bit cold… The crew this year consists of people from last year and new ones and everyone is really cool. I’m so happy I have my friends from last year here, I was really looking forward to seeing them again!

This year I’m staying in an instructors’ apartment on the suburbs of Aliki, a small town about 10min ride from the kiteschool. The apartment is on a top floor of a small, greek-style building, with a HUGE terrace around it. It’s pretty quiet and the view is amazing… I love staying here, especially when I get to drink my morning coffee outside, looking at the sun warming up the hills around πŸ™‚ There are four other people in the house, but it doesn’t feel crowded. And another extra good thing – we have WiFi here, so I can keep in touch with everyone πŸ™‚

On Tuesday, when I was leaving the plane in Athens, I was stupid enough to leave my passport in the pocket in front of my seat. The last few days have been a bit hectic, trying to call people from the airlines, asking around and just hoping the passport will be found. Thankfully, yesterday we got a call that my passport is at the police station next to the airport, and so now all I have to do is contact them and retrieve it somehow.

It’s been pretty windy lately, and even today I woke up a few times at night because the wind was howling and smashing against the windows of our apartment really hard. Yesterday it picked up to such high levels that Ian, our manager, told everyone to stop their lessons. It is good though, as I can get experience with teaching in very strong wind conditions… I have some from last year, but still it’s good to practice from time to time πŸ™‚

Check out some snaps I took during the past few days:

May wind be with you,
Suzana

This and that and also something else. Oh, and a gallery.

I haven’t been posting for a while, huh? Well, it’s kinda hard to post about anything kite-related when you’re back to the so called “real life”, with university, postgraduate studies and all that jazz… I love Warsaw, but seriously, could someone take me somewhere with wind and warm water already? Anyway, I have 3 pieces of news I wanna share:

1. On 27 January I’m going to Hurghada (Egypt) with my very good friend Asia! 2 weeks of Egyptian goodness! We’re going to sunbathe, see the pyramids (How sad is it that I’ve been to Egypt twice and I have not seen them? Please, don’t answer.) and of course spend as much time on water as the wind allows us. I’m giving myself these two weeks to learn a certain new trick I didn’t have time to try on Paros… provided I have not forgotten how to unhook haha.

2. This friday Regis, a crazy French/Italian guy who was hanging around paroskite a lot during summer, is coming to visit me for 3 days! πŸ˜€ We’re going to jam around the city, eat Polish food (haha, pierogi and ogΓ³rki kiszone… you better be prepared for that, Regis :D). A shame it’s not snowing yet, would love to take him snowkiting 😦

3. And finally, to put the cherry on top of the Paroskite cake, I present you the complete gallery from Paros 2011! πŸ™‚ There are a few people missing on the pictures, but I’ll try to do something about that later… as for now enjoy, and those of you who have been there with me – do you remember all this?! πŸ˜€


I’ll post a separate page for the gallery later, especially if I find a few more nice pics…

May wind be with you,
-Suzana