Wednesday, April 13, 2011


Just back from trip to Greece. I find it hard to understand how I have never gotten around to this trip before! I love the airports and the flight - great for people watching: from the teenager with the Edward Carlisle hairdo to the erstwhile gap year turned yuppies turned yummy mummies and daddies, the 'lads', the beautiful people - and us!

After some exploratory tourism (see feet wrapped in cold flannels above),  I sat on the balcony seven floors up and watched the sky along the horizon turn from pink to lilac to smoky inky blue as the swallows darted amongst the ruins of the temple of Zeus. I could not help but think of the poem ... "I am Ozymandias,King of Kings, look on my works, ye mighty, and despair" ... on the other hand, 2500 years is not a bad legacy.

As a Saxon-Celt, it seems strange to think of the academe that existed here two and a half millenia ago. Amazing how different societies and civilizations develop and then co-exist.

The next day and it was off to the Parthenon, with all of its associated temples and theatres on or near the Acropolis. Thence to the Agora, Hadrian's Library and the Roman Forum. Even in the current state of disrepair/attempted 'halt and repair', these buildings are awe inspiring and astonishing. What will be here in another 2500 years' time? If we could come back (H. G.Wells style) would we see Morlocks and Eloi co-exist? I have never wanted to live forever but confess to a sneaking desire to see.

Day three saw me atop the other big hill with monastery on top - sadly adorned now with aerials and graffiti.

 We also visited the site of the first modern Olympics - sets the hairs up on the back of your neck.

And on day four it was time to come home, after a quick visit to the amazing Acropolis Museum (the new one).

This city never sleeps (though it seems all the dogs do).  All night, the trams, cars, horns keep going. Wonderful really.

I can see why people come here and stay. I leave a little part of my heart high on a hill in Athens.

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