Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Hello from Athens!

We made it here safely after a very long trip. We left Calgary Sunday evening and spent 9 hours on the plane to Frankfurt, 3 hours in the Frankfurt Airport, 2.5 hours on the plane to Athens, then 2 hours trying how to figure out how to get to the hotel by train. So we finally got here around 9:00 Athens time on Monday, which would be around 12:00 noon Calgary time. The hotel is really nice; it's one of those designer hotels and is quite modern. They have really great little shampoos and stuff. If you know me, you know that is my favorite part of staying at a hotel. Once we got here, we showered and got dressed and went to the roof top restaurant for supper. It was a really nice place with a great view of some of the ruins (like the Parthenon) all lit up. Then we crashed and slept until 10:30, waking up only once around 4:00 AM.

This morning we got ready and went walking around Athens. We grabbed some donairs from a very busy (which means popular which means good) restaurant several blocks from the hotel. Then we made our way to the ruins and stopped off at several of those, finally making our way up to the Parthenon. They are very beautiful, and it's quite amazing sanding on an area that people stood on thousands of years ago. The only unfortunate thing is that many of them are being restored, so there was a lot of scaffolding and building supplies everywhere we went.

After the ruins we wandered around Athens for a bit and bought a few souveniers and some clothes (of course) for myself. Then we stopped at a little bakery and bought some mini pizzas and meat buns and ice cream for supper.

We met a really sweet British couple yesterday while we were trying to find our way on the train. It was handy because they had a good map, and Lowen had some information they needed, so we pooled our efforts and helped each other find our hotels. They are staying only a few blocks from us. Then today when we were wandering back from the ruins, we saw them again! The lady had just bought some strawberries, so she shared them with us and we caught up on what we had done that day. That was special.

Lowen forgot his hair wax, and I forgot any kind of hair product all together, so today we made it our mission to find something. It is so humid here, so my hair is a massive ball of fuzz so I desperately need something to tame it down. It is actually quite difficult finding something like that in another country... they have different brands and of course I don't read Greek, but after going into several drug stores, we both found something that suited our needs.

One thing I can't get used to is all the smoke. Everyone here smokes! And they smoke everywhere... restaurants, hotels, churches, everywhere. I stink all the time from it.

I'm pretty much exhausted again, and my plan is to go organize my purchases from today and then go to sleep.

The plan for tomorrow is to head over to the islands. Maybe we'll spend a day on Crete and then head to Santorini. Hopefully I'll get internet access again soon so I can write another update!

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