Noi6 means "the 6 of us" in Romanian.

We are five, you are the sixth one.

We thank you for joining us in our trip around the world...

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Greek Continent

Our first experience in Greece includes meeting Mom's lifetime friend's husband at the Athenian airport. We take a bus for a while… then have to get off the bus because there are strikes going on and public demonstrations.

Apparently this is the new norm in Athens.

It's kind of weird to say you're in Athens. For some reason, I think of this more as a history-book place, which I suppose is normal, since people do tend to read about it quite a lot in history books.

It does look like an Ancient History type of place, but mostly that's reserved for the museums and the ruins. 

We met Cristina, Maria, and Eleni again, had dinner at a Greek restaurant, watched the Romanian version of the camp presentation, and talked till after midnight.

(Some of us, however, (read 'we girls') laughed hysterically the whole night.)

The next morning, after talking a while longer, we headed to Ermioni (in a round-about way).

It took us 4 days to reach it, despite the fact that the trip could easily be made in three hours.

First we went to Meteora, where we visited 4 Orthodox monasteries.

It is so comforting to be somewhere where you know all the rules and how to act and everything seems familiar. Catholic churches, for some reason, don't feel like places of worship to me. Then you reach an Orthodox church and there are paintings of saints on the walls and icons everywhere, and the altar, and they're so cluttered, in a way, that you feel very very cozy, as if everything's alright and nothing can go wrong.

Next we drove to Delphi, where we crawled through a secret ancient tunnel and filmed our adventures… as well as talked to the oracle, and walked up hills, and watched a great deal of students as they chattered very loudly.
When we got all the way to the top, we saw the stadium. 

It totally looks like the training field from Hercules.

I miss having DVDs at my disposal.

And the next day, off we went to Olympia, which we explored fully before heading to the stadium.

Ioan and I ran it at least twice each— me trying mostly without my sandals, as they slipped from my feet toward the gravelly end.
For some reason, though, the guard stationed there wanted me to put them back on. Apparently, taking your shoes off in a stadium where people used to run around stark naked is not respectful to this holy place.

The fact that in most other places in the world, it is considered respectful to take your shoes off— sometimes not even allowing their soles to touch the ground— doesn't count here.

Maybe they just don't want people bleeding all over the stadium. However, I'm certain that the ancient athletes got hurt and bled every once in a while.

At any rate, after a long "let's see who can stand on one foot the longest, me or you?" (Ioan and I lasted  about 7-10 minutes), we headed toward Ermioni…

And a blissful week of total rest and relaxation and pomegranates.

But, all good things must come to an end, so at the end of the week we packed up and went to Athens again…

We saw the Parthenon, the Agora, the Acropolis Museum, the Greek History museum, more marble than should exist, and played a lot of card games.

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