Updated: Sep 12
How we can use random opportunities for new working experiences,
in search of unknown life routes, to help us grow & become wiser.
Having made my first steps in the Travel & Tourism Industry of Greece back in 2000, writing my own blog on my very own website in 2021 was not exactly something that crossed my mind, back then.
It amazes me how much the tourism industry & the travelling environment has changed in the last 20 years (!). How much more detailed & specific our trips have become.
Back then, as a young man studying Tourism Business & Economics, I had the chance to work for three months & gain work experience during the High Summer season on the Island of Mykonos, the Island of Winds for the local population. I simply could not turn it down. When you are so young, all chances to get new experiences matter, work-related or not, in order to build your personality & discover what attracts you & what does not.
After all, I was only looking for some money in order to have a pleasant Winter in Athens & have fun. Was there a better place than Mykonos, in order to make a start?
Although I had no working experience, no idea what customer service was and had never left home without my family for such a long period, I was ready for this deep dive into the unknown. My arrival & first days at the Hotel at Kalafatis Beach, which was my destination, were epic. Imagine how it feels to be inside an international environment, meeting new people all the time & to create your professional profile from zero.
I arrived at the mecca of “anything is possible” & I was breathing the air of freedom. Unknown between unknowns, I could be anybody I wanted. And that's what I did.
Those three months woke me up from the passive reality I had been in; home, studies, everyday University, weekends off. My eyes & mind opened wide: people from all over the world, long term tourists, cool travellers, famous personalities that I knew from TV, diverse people with different languages, various cultures and a huge mix of money currencies.
That was my new world. The island of Mykonos. Working as a beach boy at the huge beach of the Hotel on the Eastern part of the island. Slowly slowly by watching my colleagues, following my instincts and trying to improve myself day after day, I was creating a more mature personality, ready for new experiences, that didn't know were there.
Everyday, because of my job's nature, I was meeting strangers, open to hear their different opinions; simply while wearing only my swimsuit and hat. Finally, self confidence set in. It was a pleasant & profitable period of my life. An undiscovered world was found.
This life experience helped me to decide that I would continue my professional journey in the Travel & Tourism industry. It became a priority for me; I wanted more & was looking for the next step forward. My working seasons started to expand year after year, while my CV was getting bigger & interesting. My professional reputation in Travel Agencies & Tour Operators network of Mykonos, was coming alive.
At the same time, my University studies faded smaller & smaller into the background until my diploma came finally after years. What I find to be an important achievement is that during my studies, I was getting working experience at the same time.
My journey in the Tourism & Travel industry continued since then in Chania, Heraklion, Santorini, Rethymno. Different positions, different skills, different places; they were all welcome. All of them were useful lessons. It is clear now that I want to be present & to create something unique for young-at-heart travellers. Using the word Travellers instead of Tourists is because when leaving home for a new trip, we are travellers & not tourists. Tourism is a part of travel, but not all travel is tourism!
The latest stop, the one with most soul, is co-founding Bonnie and Clyde Urban Tours . An online Travel Agency, specialized in non-touristy tours. Always in small groups of people, highly personable & eco-responsibility, we are creating life moments.
Our Sunset Craft Beer Walking Tour in Chania, is the first ever in Greece. Soon followed by the Craft Beer Stories in Rethymno & the Mini Craft Beer Walking Tour in Chania ( ideal for younger people & short term visitors ).
At the same time, as we wanted to present the colourful urban cityscape of Chania to the visitors of the place, and not only the famous Venetian Harbour, we created the first in Crete: Graffiti & Street Art Tour of Chania. A dive into colours & less-known city routes.
See you out there