12 June 2011

Greece Days 6-7

Yet another deluge of photos :) I seem to be averaging 30-40 a day, which is going to add up to, well, a shit ton at the end. These pics include the temple to Afea on the island of Aigina, some day-trip fun in Aigina, the temple to Olympian Zeus in Athens, various pretty things in Athens, the only remaining Trireme in Athens (as far as I know) which was recreated to do various speed tests for historical purposes, some photos from the Pireas museum in Athens and finally a few pics of the beautiful (yet torrential) rain storm we had this afternoon.

I've got some time right now because I'm skipping dinner (noodle bar leftovers ftw) so I'm going to go through and actually weed out the good photos from the mediocre, and talk a little bit about each one. I didn't bring a good travel journal with me so this blog is going to be transformed into a greek travel blog for the next 4 weeks haha. hopefully you all will still find it interesting :)

Be sure to check out my last two greek photo posts as well, as I'm going to go through and do the same thing (deleting bad pictures, adding descriptions, etc) for them over the next couple hours.

 The above set is from the Temple of Afea on the island of Aigina in Greece. It is a long bus ride from the port where the ferries run through fields of pistachio trees, orange trees, and lots of other beautiful foliage. The busses in greece are a bit insane, though, and on the ride back down to the town from this temple we nearly had a head on collision with a bus going the opposite way. In the last pic you can see a little dust devil that randomly picked up and got quite powerful and then dissipated. Where I was standing it wasn't windy at all... weird.
 A to scale model of what the temple would have looked like in antiquity. I thought the little people/animal models were cute haha.

 Pics from the museum at the temple. Not a ton to see. What's pictured is stuff they found around the temple that originally would have been part of the temple itself.
 beautiful, beautiful island beach ^^
 I'd say about 70% of the people in greece ride scooters. They look so wonderfully european leaning up against white washed walls among brightly colored flowers everywhere.

 I really liked the vines growing along the power line in this pic. aps would flip.

 some of the lovely ladies on this trip with me :)

 crystal clear aqua marine water the temperature of a heated pool. It makes me swoon. how PERFECT does this beach look? oh, and there are some of the boys on this trip as well :)


 the boys decided to do jumping pics. the water below is only 4-5 feet deep, but sandy. and the jump wasn't really that high.

 triple chocolate gelato. to die for! and only a euro fifty.

 we thought this guy was naked at first, but it was just the wood strategically blocking out his swim trunks haha.

 One of the boys giving his site report on the temple of olympian zeus.

 the above are all pictures of the temple of olympian zeus which is only a few block from our hotel in the heart of (ancient) athens.

i love these purple flowers.
 One of the wonderful street dogs that decided to attach itself to our group. One of the boys named it Sprinkles. Athens has a TON of street dogs. there are a few cats too, but you literally see a dog on every corner. When we got to the temple of olympian zeus today there were so many of them in different colors and sizes hanging out in a little pack that it reminded me of the movie Oliver and Company. Apparently the humane society (or something) goes around putting collars on the street dogs so that they don't get captured and killed... it's sad that they don't have ownders but they honestly all seem happy and well fed. They also get to hang out in the temples while the humans have to stay behind the ropes haha.
Sprinkles found us across the street from the temple while we were talking, and decided to bark at people passing by us. When we went to cross the street, Sprinkles stood in the bike lane and barked at passing cars, as if trying to get them to stop and let us cross. When there was finally an opportunity, we crossed and sprinkles trotted along happily next to us, and followed us around the temple for the rest of the morning. <3

 This adorable little pink and yellow bus was parked next to all the ugly tour busses.

 The only remaining Trireme in Athens (as far as I know). It is part of the Greek Navy and was constructed to match those used in ancient greece.

 A rendering of an amazonian woman, whom the greeks would sometimes fight.
 The above (and below) statues are from the Pireas Museum. A lot of the statues were found in the ocean after the ship they were on sunk hundreds of years ago. You can tell where the statues were exposed to the water (versus burried in the sand) by where the marble is porous and eroded like sea rock. In some of them you could even see old sea shells that had gotten stuck in there over hundreds of years at the bottom of the ocean. So, so cool!

 A funerary stele. These are EVERYWHERE in greek museums.
 A bronze tragedy mask.
 A bronze of Artemis
 A bronze of Athena. There are not many bronzes left nowadays because much of the metal was melted down to make weapons/bullets etc during the war- so these full bronzes are very impressive!

 Artemis once again
 A herm- herms are generally just a block, like you see here, with a head at the top and usually some male genitalia where the hole is. Very strange statues, and the butt of many a joke these days :)

 A wooden coffin. You can the reflection of me taking the picture!
 When we got out of the Pireas, we saw that the sky had turned dark and stormy! It was so beautiful against the sailboats in the dock and the crowded white washed hill of Athens.

 Love these little cars. After about 5 mins on the bus, the rain started pouring down.
 They have gorgeous trees here- they're like japanese cherry blossoms but with purple flowers instead of pink! and about 2-3 times the height.
What else have I been doing? hmm...Well, I've been sitting in many a greek taverna splitting jugs of wine with all the wonderful people on this trip and eating my weight in pita bread and feta cheese. Feta is about 1-2 euro here at dinner and they give you a slab of it drenched in olive oil and sprinkled with herbs. I tried a souvlaki gyro but the beef made my usually vegetarian stomach cringe so the boys let me trade my souvlaki for some of their chicken, which was very good.

OH! so 2 nights ago a bunch of us wanted to go check out the Athenian night life. We went out to dinner where I got some white wine, pita (which is 20 cents per bread),  and a spicy cheese dip which was just feta pureed with olive oil and hot peppers. it was really good but very filling, and as much as I hate to say it I'm getting a bit sick of feta cheese. (we ended up getting noodle bar last night- asian food in greece is surprisingly good!). anyways, after dinner we attempted to walk to a club we had written down directions for, but it didn't seem to exist. At this point a few of the people we were with (not me, luckily) were already drunk and acting kind of ridiculous. We wandered around for about an hour, looking up different streets and asking people for directions. We got some advice from a couple of greek girls to go to a dubstep club called ZAS, where they were planning on going later. We tried it and since it was so early (like midnight) it was basically dead. we left after 5 minutes. Eventually we stumbled upon a group of three american boys, who were doing the same thing. They got some advice from their hostel that there was a strip of clubs called the gaza, which is near the Kerameikos- about a 15 min walk from where we were. Us ladies were in heels, but we were determined so we decided to give it a shot. We eventually found a pretty cool bar with an open air second floor, but by that point we were all so exhausted (we have been getting up between 6-7:30 every morning and not going to sleep until at least midnight) that we just ordered one very overpriced drink (8euro for a gin and tonic? no thank you) and headed home. Of course, the cabs here will only take 4 and by this time we were a group of 5 so we had to walk the 20 mins back to our hotel. There were definitely some annoyed people that night haha... but I had fun and I'm glad we went out and tried.

That was a really long story. Anyways... yesterday was an island day which was amazing. I forgot a towel and bought one at a dusty little shop in the beach town- the store looked like no one had bought anything in years and they had random crap... like one of the guys bought a phoenix suns hat there haha. All the towels appeared to have loony tunes and disney characters on them which was interesting.. i thought mine was just pink flowers but when I unfolded it I found a large picture of minny and mickey mouse! ah well, it will be conversation piece of a towel i suppose haha.

tomorrow we hit the road and don't return to athens for three weeks. first we will drive around the mainland to places like delphi, olympia, etc.. and then we will island hop. I'm loving everything about this trip but I can't wait to get to the islands because it will become much less school-y and much more vacation-y at that point :)

Everything is beautiful and delicious and amazing, and I'm loving every second. The group of students is great and we've already become really close and comfortable with each other. I'm excited to see how the next four weeks play out :)

Love, love, love!

Kali spera,


  1. Hi Lulu! Thanks for taking the time to post the pictures and the commentary. So glad you are having a good time! Enjoy your adventures ahead. Love you lots! P.S. Is your phone working OK?

  2. I love these pictures. I have always wanted to visit Greece or just Europe in general. The water in your pictures is just amazing!!!!

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