FIRST FULL DAY IN ATHENS

so my adventure to get here to greece was insane; two changed flights, one almost-missed flight, no driver to the hostel when i arrived, and no luggage. but at last all is well! my luggage arrived this morning, i woke up and it was out on the patio waiting for me!

it’s really wonderful because one of the HISA teachers, cameron, is staying here at the hostel with us and then he’ll ride the ferry down to paros with us as well. so we got up late and went out for a few hours of sight-seeing. however, since i was just here in athens in may i had already seen most of it! it’s always nice to get a little perspective though. so we walked from our hostel in the plaka over to the akropolis and wandered around it for a bit while cameron gave us a brief history about it. what i found most interesting, though, is that since he used to be an architect i got to hear much more about the actual structure of all the buildings in far more detail than i would have gotten form someone else. last time i was up there (with a CIEE trip with my school) it was hot as hell, we had a different tour guide for the akropolis and nobody liked her, the site was packed, and there was no breeze to speak of. today, however, since tourist season is coming to a close there was much more room to look around and take pictures by the buildings if you wanted. it’s also only mid-70’s with plenty of wind, and having cameron as the guide was a huge bonus as well. 

by the time we finished up there we were all starving so we headed over to a little cafe and grabbed some lunch and some shade. i got some tatziki and pita (which was delish) and we hung out for a few hours chatting and getting to know one another. 

so far it’s just four of us and cameron, which made it really nice to have these kinds of chats. daniel just graduated high school and is coming to paros because he knows that he loves art, but he’s not sure what he wants to do with his life. then there’s frank, who has already been to greece five times and goes to college in new jersey. hannah is a senior at a school down in florida and she’s studying drama and all things theatre. cameron is in his late 30’s and has lived in greece for seven years after moving here from california because his job as an architect was stifling his creative side and he couldn’t bear it. everyone seems really interesting and like they really want to be here which is fantastic.

it was weird hearing all their backgrounds though, they all come from such different families than i do. i had never really realized how blessed i was to have two loving parents who were still together and a brother that i get along with, all of whom love and support me and want me to be happy. they all seemed amazed when i started talking about my family and how i was raised. i guess it really is hard to come by nowadays. 

after lunch all of us students decided to just head back to the hostel to relax since we’re all still quite tired and jet lagged, meanwhile cameron went off to wander about on his own. 

later today four other girls are supposed to be showing up to join our group, we’ll see how they are. it’s weird since i’ve already done so much with these people and we’ve already sort of clicked into our own group. watching that dynamic change will be interesting..

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