Saturday, August 30, 2008

The Acropolis Day 44 30/08/08

Day 44 (slide show)

(Must See Video)
I received a call this morning from my Couch Surfing friend Maha. She has some folks who want to go to dinner tonight at 7:30 so I think its a good day to see the Acropolis. I walked around for a few hours in the morning trying to get a better feel of the city. I found a tourist open air train that would take me up the hill but the walk is much better. The weather is perfect. I arrived at the site around 11:30 at what I guess is parking area. I feel I got lucky because the crowd hadn't arrived yet. Once you leave the parking area there are many different trails to get up to the ruin. Most tourists take the steps up but the trails wind through Olive trees and small ruin areas. The only word I can use is stunning. The Archaeologist have all the stones marked with numbers to make it easier to find the right location for the pieces. Its a giant puzzle. The Theater was my favorite place. I wish I could see a performance there. I walked around the whole mountain. There is even small trails through the neighborhoods. Afterwards I found a nice little restaurant and sat down for a Greek Salad and a glass of wine. (This was my second Greek Salad in as many days) I meet Maha and her friend for dinner later that evening. His name is Constantinos Gofas. I great guy who is a rock climber as well as a trekker. He had just returned from a climbing trip to the Dolomite's in Italy. We ended up at his house to review some maps. I told him of my plan to trek on the original Athenian trail to the summit of Mt. Olympus. "Never heard of it" he said. "Come, let's look at the maps" He had not climbed Mt. Olympus since he was a kid, some 20 years ago. I think he felt a little ashamed he hadn't been up to the mountain more. Its a great symbol of pride to the Greeks, even those who don't climb love the mountain. He said he had a friend that he would talk to about the Athenian trail and get back to me. I had a great night talking about the mountain with him and Maha. O' and one more thing is they were very worried about me and my plan to leave Greece by going north through Albania. Both he and Maha were quite emphatic that I not do this. We left it at that and I went back to my hostel. This is Saturday and I have to wait until Tuesday for my credit card to arrive at the hostel. I extended my stay to get it by UPS. I don't like it but I had no choice.