25th June 2012
I thought the view from the rooftop of La Palma in Stressa was impressive but this morning I found another view just as jaw dropping. The dining room is on the top floor of the hotel and when the lift doors opened I’m afraid some very “ocker” language slipped out - the view was astounding. The Acropolis was just there in front of us – well, actually it was probably a few kilometres distant but it took my breath away. I couldn’t stop looking at it and marveling that today I was going to see another of those places I’ve been reading and dreaming about for years and years.
We had a huge day around Athens on the hop on hop off buses. First stop was the Acropolis for a few hours – I was just so happy to be there. I feel inadequate that I don’t have the words to express how I feel when visiting places like this but to walk in the footsteps of the ancient Greeks and to see and touch the stones they carved thousands of years ago is truly a dream come true for me. Sharing it with Sarah is a nice change because even though I’ve been with a tour most of the last month I’ve usually taken in the big sights on my own. We took miles of photos, probably none that haven’t been captured millions of times before but we had a great time. A few people also took pity on us trying to take “selfies” – we must look like a pair of dills at times because we usually laugh hilariously at our results. I have to tell you the freshly made lemonade at the kiosk outside the site was most welcome after wandering around out in the sun and is easily as good as the Italian version at Pompeii.
We made good use of the buses, visited more of the ancient sites and found a lovely little shady street full of cafe’s and shops for a yummy lunch and window shopping. After lunch we boarded the bus again and took in the sights down around the port then late in the afternoon made our way back to the markets we’d seen earlier in the day. By the time we got there most of them had packed up so we sat and had a wine and more food because of course we had to keep up our energy.
Then just because it was meant to be we found a few market stalls still trading as we made our way back to catch the bus. Sarah bought a couple of cute old ornaments and I bought a few old postcards and photographs of Athens. They are little treasures, one was posted to Paris on 13/4/36 while another shows the Parthenon and is dated 28/12/52 – not worth much really but great reminders of a fantastic day.