Alive In Athens With Iced Earth – Day 7

January 26th, 1999

…woke up a little more than an hour later, since someone was knocking on our door. It turned out to be Jon. It was 7 A.M., and apparently hardly anyone else had gone to bed at all. As the rest of them had been sitting down in the bar (and drinking more and more), someone came up with the great idea of going out to an island. Somehow they convinced our native Greek tour guides, Stella and Mary, to look at the ferry schedule and see what they could come up with. Thus, Jon Schaffer was standing at my door at 7 A.M., rather drunk, saying “Hey, we’re taking a ferry out to an island, it leaves at 7:30, so if you want to go, you’ve got five minutes to get your shit together!” Of course, I was all for it, so I quickly threw a few things in a bag, and in five minutes was in a cab on the way to the ferry!

A few people were too tired (or maybe not drunk enough) to go, and some others we had to leave behind because we knew they couldn’t get ready in five minutes, so it ended up being me, Jon, his wife Wendi, his dad Tom, Matt, Mike McGill, and Stella and Mary on the six hour ferry ride to Mykonos. We all ran onto this boat with basically no idea where we were going, no idea when (or if) we would be able to come back, no idea if there’d even be places to stay there, and most of us had hardly any Greek money. Finally we managed to be free of all the fans for a little bit, although I was somewhat surprised that I didn’t see a bunch of them jump in the water to swim after the boat! In the words of Mike McGill, “Man, we used to do spontaneous shit like this all time, it rules!” Thus, we found ourselves in the middle of a room on the ferry, surrounded by people quietly reading the morning paper and drinking their coffee, while we quickly made a pile of empty beer cans at our table and made complete asses of ourselves. Since we were being so loud, someone from the boat came by and turned up the TV by us really loud, so a little while later, Jon got up, and since he couldn’t find the volume to turn it down, he just shut the thing off! We soon moved to another area of the boat. Every five or ten minutes, Jon or Matt would spontaneously belt out “STELLA!!!!!” (a la “A Streetcar Named Desire”) as loud as they could, much to the embarrassment of Stella. It was quite a fun time, and actually the guy from the ferry by us seemed to like us, and he even would have played some Iced Earth on the boat if we would have had a cassette. I was also treated to Matt singing wonderful versions of “The Love Boat” and the “Gilligan’s Island” theme.

Eventually, we arrived on Mykonos. Since it was winter, almost everything was shut down, and it took us a little while to find a hotel where they weren’t completely ripping us off. Once there, Tom instantly passed out in his room, so the rest of us just kind of hung out in the hotel bar (once again). Eventually, we made it out of the hotel and walked around looking for a place to eat. We ended up at a Mexican place (well, sort of Mexican), which was sort of cool at first (they played some Black Sabbath for us), but then Jon almost got in a war with them because they wouldn’t take Mastercard. Again we returned to the hotel, where we hung out for a while talking and drinking, and I actually learned a lot about the whole Iced Earth family that I didn’t know. I wanted to see some of the island while I was there, so even though it was night, I went out walking around by myself. It was definitely an interesting place, and quite eerie since everything was closed up. When we finally went to bed that night, we calculated that Stella and Mary had been up for 40 hours straight, and somehow they looked just as good as they always did.

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