Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Greece - Days 6 and 7

Day 6 - Ancient Agora, Plaka
Day 7 - Athens to Amsterdam to Detroit to Denver


We optimistically thought we could arrange an island tour, but that never materialized. We got to sleep in a bit, and after breakfast we got on the bus to head back to the ancient part of the city - the "Ancient Agora" - an archaeological site.

Church

Statues inside Ancient Agora

Temple of Hephaistos

Temple of Hephaistos - Looks like the stone was burned

Me, Bill, John outside the Temple of Hephaistos

Turtle!

Hard to believe this was once a "city"

View of Temple of Hephaistos from Ancient Agora

This looked like an alien!

11th Century Church

Bill - causing trouble

Amazing detailed stone carvings!

Original painting inside the church

floor inside church

Right in the middle of a neighborhood!

More Ancient Agora

An example of the graffiti that is literally everywhere
After we got done touring the archaeological site, we stopped in a sidewalk cafe and had some lunch. More bread and Greek salad, and I sampled some spanakopita (which was delicious).

Lunch!
After lunch, John and Bill and I decided to wander through Plaka while we waited for Greg and Jennifer to meet up with us.

Museum of Greek Folk Art

Downtown Plaka
We sat at another cafe and snacked a bit waiting for Greg and Jennifer. They showed up later with Greg's mom and Will. We decided to change clothes and try to head back down for dinner. We didn't want to wait to take the tour bus, so we finally used our free passes and took the tram. Which took freakin forever!!! Stopped at every stop, and since it was rush hour, it was packed!

Me, Will, John
Changed clothes and then took the tram back down. It didn't take quite as long, but it certainly is not fast! We walked a few blocks to Greg's parents' hotel and then headed to a restaurant down the street for dinner.

View of Acropolis from the roof of Greg's parents' hotel
We decided to head back toward the hotel, it was starting to get late and none of us had packed yet. We ran into Alex and Lynda who had not eaten dinner. We sat with them and most of the others ordered some drinks. I had already had plenty of alcohol this trip, so I passed. I was starting to get tired, and most of the others seemed to want to stay out a bit and not sleep tonight since we would have to leave so early for the airport. After Alex and Lynda finished eating, we headed back to the hotel on the tram, the rest stayed behind to drink.

I got to the hotel, packed and got to bed at 12:30. My alarm went off at 3:10 because the bus was to depart at 3:30 am. I was one of the last people on the bus at 3:27. Long drive to the airport and all sorts of complications checking in. Most of the people had traveled with more than one roller bag, and in Athens they were making people check the one that had previously been carry on!

Got on the plane with no major complications (I packed light) and I fell asleep almost immediately. Woke up long enough to have breakfast (a sandwich?) - then fell asleep again.

We were supposed to have a two hour connection in Amsterdam. Plane landed on time but we were in the next to last row and it took forever to get off. At least a half dozen of us were on the same flight, and since Alex knew the airport he walked us in the right direction. We split ways since they had a much longer connection. It took 45 minutes to get through "passport control" since there were no corrals of any kind. It reminded me of the swarm that occurs when you are leaving a concert or something. Totally disorganized. Once we got through there, we only had about 10-15 minutes to get something to eat or shop before getting back on the plane.

Amersterdam airport
I couldn't even buy something to eat since in Amsterdam the security is right at the gate, and no liquids >:( Annoying!!!

The plane was mostly full, so I was VERY happy to find that I was on an aisle seat in the center row and there wasn't anyone sitting by me. SCORE!! I couldn't sleep, so on the flight I watched two movies ("Salt" and "Just Wright") and read a few books.

Arrived in Detroit, had to go through customs again - but it was a LOT easier than in Amsterdam. Landed a bit early in Denver around 4:30 in the afternoon. Since it was rush hour I didn't get picked up until about 5:30.

Another super SUPER long day of travel.

The trip to Greece was a complete success. I had a lot of fun, I met some really cool people, and I had an unforgettable first marathon. Thanks again to everyone who helped make this happen for me!

3 comments:

  1. What an AMAZING TRIP! Thanks for the awesome recap. I hope that what's next is more halfs and more travel. Your adventures are inpsiring! Dang, just reading all this has made me utterly exhausted! I don't know how you handle it.

    One key thing I noticed about this trip: No comments about how far up ahead L was this time. :)

    P.S. I am dying to know what you pack when you travel. You're always traveling so light! I'm like a pack mule wherever I go, seriously.

    ReplyDelete
  2. This brings back so memories! I so need to go back someday!

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  3. Your little tour of Agora and Plaka seems like a very cool reward for doing awesome on your marathon! Sad that everything is covered in graffiti. I guess if you are a local it isn't such an exciting thing to see as it is for tourists. All that food - spanikopita had my tummy growling!

    Glad you made it back safely - sounds like the way home was at least less eventful than trying to get there!

    ReplyDelete

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