YOUR HOLIDAY DISASTER

Tina Walsh wanted two weeks of peace on a Greek island. Was that too much to ask?
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The Independent Travel
Two Weeks of sloth. It should have been the perfect holiday. Just me and Jane, a friend I'd known for ever, on a 14-day orgy of drinking, sun-bathing and sleeping off hangovers on the Greek island of Poros. Instead, it turned into an epic ordeal when Beryl, who worked in Jane's office and had just been dumped, cajoled us into letting her and "one or two" friends tag along.

Initial misgivings were confirmed when I turned up at the airport to be met by 10 people who looked like they'd just stepped out of Hi-De-Hi.

Halfway through the flight, Beryl, who could have doubled as a marquee at a UN hospitality function, decided to harass the cabin crew by jamming her finger on the alert button and downing the plane's supply of alcohol. She later threw up all over herself and the two people either side and, just before landing, had to be laid out in the aisle after passing out.

That night, after booking into our pension, we set off into town in an explosion of pink, yellow and orange ra-ra skirts, white stilletos and (mis)matching handbags. Jane and I trailed behind, trying to think of a way to lose companions. This proved difficult, however, as you could count the number of watering holes on one finger.

Two hours and 20 bottles of Retsina later, things didn't seem quite so gloomy. Even Beryl had a kind of iridescent glow which had nothing to do with the spangly top and skin-tight Lurex skirt.

We staggered back to the hotel and made our way to our respective rooms, to be woken half-an-hour later by someone yelling and screaming in Greek. Beryl, after the day's traumas, had got so angry when she couldn't get her key into the lock, that she'd kicked the bedroom door in.

Appeals to the owner's better nature fell on deaf ears and he sensibly decided to throw her out, along with the rest of them. Jane and I were tucked up in bed at the other end of the corridor, so could thankfully plead innocence.

They managed to find someone else mad enough to take them in but, although we were now on opposite sides of the town, we still couldn't throw them off; it was hard to miss a crowd who appeared to have been dipped in radio- active custard.

From then on, things degenerated: Jane and I weren't speaking to each other, one girl was caught in flagrante with a 15-year-old waiter and nearly forced into marriage by his furious mama, and Beryl had some kind of breakdown and was flown home.

Poros, and any island within a 50-mile radius, has become a definite no-go zone, and the smell of ouzo still gives me palpitations.

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