Tuesday, April 5, 2011


Ready for photo overload? After our week of gelato-eating in Italy, Karl went home (he was on spring break) and I flew to Athens, where I met my friend Laura, who flew over from Madison, and my college friend Carrie, who is teaching math in Athens this year. Laura and I spent a few days in Athens, then we took a trip to Thessaloniki and Thassos, an island near the Bulgarian border where my Swedish friend Lena lives. Then we went back to Athens for a few more days of fun with Carrie before heading home. Many thanks to Laura for sharing her photos with me! I won't tell you which photos are whose; let's just say that if it's a well-composed picture, or if it includes a person's entire face, it's probably Laura's. I'll be honest. I didn't know if I was going to like Greece. But I loved it! It's so beautiful, and it's easy to get around. The water is clear and turquoise, and the fresh produce is unbeatable. Carrie gets hers at the neighborhood outdoor market, where you can also find olives, nuts, honey, and fish. On the ferry to Thassos: It was Greece's Independence Day while we were there! The kids were super cute in their traditional Greek outfits. The high school band played, and there was a parade featuring all of the children. Lena has an art workshop, and we made lots of crafts there. Laura taught us how to make fish out of plastic string. Mine is red and black, which were my high school colors. Don't tell anyone, but it's not a fish. It's a Sauk-Prairie High School graduate awareness ribbon. Class of 1995, you don't have to suffer in silence any longer! One day we went hiking in the mountains. There was a little village there. We parked the car in the village and roamed around the paths in the woods. In every flowering tree, you could hear bees buzzing, and across the mountain, you could hear the sound of goats' bells ringing. I wouldn't have known what the bell sound was if Lena hadn't told us. I really felt like we were in Europe at that moment. Here is the guest room, where Laura and I stayed at Lena and her husband Kenneth's. It was like summer camp! Only more fun because our hosts were Swedish. I love all things Swedish. Laura and I spent a few hours in Thessaloniki, the second largest city in Greece. We went to Greece's largest church: And saw the remains of an ancient market: Back in Athens, we took a bus down to Sounion, home of the Temple of Poseidon. The bus drove all along the coast, and we got to the temple around sunset, which was perfect. We also took a day trip to the Peloponnese. We stopped at a huge amphitheater, built around 300BC. Carrie and I climbed all the way to the top. The acoustics were amazing. A man stood in the center of the stage crumpling a piece of paper, and we could hear it clearly, even from our top-row seats! We climbed up 999 steps to a fortress. The views from the top were worth the climb! Peeking through a rock window at the top of the steps: See that little island in the photo above? This is what's on it: Laura and I had some time to explore Athens on our own. We visited the Acropolis and saw the Parthenon.

We could see the entire city of Athens below us.

We also found the grounds from the 2004 Olympics. We got off the subway and walked right in. There were no doors or anything! It was pretty much deserted, except for a few swimmers and tennis players.

We made ourselves right at home. This is the real athletes' locker room!

We're still not sure if we were really supposed to be there. In the end, we couldn't find the spot where we entered (the place is huge!), so we had to resort to escape art.

Many thanks to Laura, Carrie, and Lena for a fabulous week! It was Laura's first overseas adventure, and she was an awesome traveler!


Case said...

talk so micket for sharing.

I am excited!!!

Anonymous said...

looks like a fab time!

Laura said...

Love the pictures ;). I am so glad I was able to go with you, I had a great trip. Many adventures to remember for years to come.

Elsworth said...

That guest house is amazing! I want to live there.


It was truely great to have you!
Tack att ni kom. :-)