Sunday, August 30, 2009

Its greek to me, or in other words - Opa!!

Wow, thanks for the gelato suggestions you guys. Btw, I finally found a flavor I don't like so much - banana.

Have I confessed on here before that I often wonder what it would be like to be illiterate? Its one of those things that I try to pretend about sometimes but it is really hard to think about what it must feel like to not be able to read when you can in fact read. Until you come to Greece. And now I know what it feels like to be illiterate. Because with this crazy greek alphabet I don't know how to sound out what a triangle or an upside down horseshoe sounds like. At least in Italy or France we can sound out words and seem like we have some clue what we are talking about. Here we just have to point unless there is an english translation alongside whatever it is we want. Its pretty strange.

So last night, Paul and I spent a really glamorous night in the Athens airport sleeping on the floor. Bleh. I am super tired right now, even though I actually did manage to get about 3 1/2 hours of sleep. When we were planning this trip, I found a website called "sleeping in airports" or something that touted the idea that airports are the biggest waste of space, totally empty at night, and we should just sleep in them rather than pay for hotels. The website specifically mentioned the Athens airport as being particularly accomodating to airport sleepers. I, being the sucker I am for an adventure, thought this sounded awesome. So after some convincing, I talked Paul into trying it. Our flight from Rome left at 8:00 pm and got to Athens at about 11:30 pm Athens time and our connecting flight to Thessaloniki, in nothern Greece, left at 7:00 am. Perfect, I thought, for getting some shut eye. We got off the plane, and sure enough there were probably 50 people camped out on benches or laying on the marble floor catching some shut-eye.

But we just couldn't be satisfied sleeping in the same terminal as everybody else, so we went looking for a better spot and somehow left the main area of the airport and entered international ticketing, "leaving" the country. There was just a booth where an attendant stamped passports to go into the "A" terminal of the airport, and we could see that there were lots of open benches there, so we thought, "why not?" Only after we went through and laid our stuff out did we stop to question why we were the only ones there. When we figured out what we had done, we couldn't get back in to Greece! There was a big guard sitting on one side of a glass wall (the Greece side) who kept waving us away and wouldn't talk to us and it took some persuasion and about an hour to get past the border control and get readmitted into Greece.

Anyway, it was not as fun and fabulous as I am sure sleeping on the floor of the airport sounds for those of you who are thinking of trying it.

Now we are in Kalambaka, Greece and spent a day traveling around with a Canadian couple on their honeymoon (who coincidentally have spent two nights of their honeymoon sleeping in airports). We met up with them on the bus here and ended up staying at the same hotel and will probably be hiking trails between monasteries with them tomorrow. Its fun making travel buddies.

And can I just say that Greek food rocks my world? Because it does. Souvlaki and baklava, here I come.


  1. Ha, that's hilarious. Nathaniel and I were going to sleep in a van in Hawaii, but decided against it and for that I am grateful.

    I would love to try fresh pita bread. I really want to go to Greece just for the food.

  2. Hey guys! I haven't been to your blog in a while and I am so jealous of your travels! That is so awesome. If you haven't gone to Istanbul yet, you have to go to the Cinar Carpet shop. We had their friend as an exchange student with us for a year and they have the best carpets. More to look at because they are very pricey, but beautiful. We went there for 3 weeks a few days ago and toured the country. It is awesome. Have a great rest of your trip!


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