We went back to cabin to exchange some euro and check out the status of Alaska with the cruise desk. Sure enough there are many cruises available and TBG excited called up the Rives without realizing that it was 1:30 in the morning there. Not surprising, they didn’t answer. We watched a documentary on Fred Rogers Won’t You be my Neighbor? and then we decided to strike out on our own. We got outside the cruise terminal and were accosted by the usual number of taxi drivers, but then we were approached by one, George, who was not going to take no for an answer. Anywhere we wanted to go was 20 Euros. We asked him to take us to the Theatre of Dionysus and off we headed. Before we got there, he had talked us into a full day tour for 100 euros, which was much less than the ship, plus we ended up with two CDs and lunch at a lovely restaurant.
First he took us to The Acropolis to purchase tickets, then we went to the Theatre of Dionysus. It was there that Thespis supposed took a step out of the chorus and spoke alone. Before that time, there was only the chorus. This is why all actors are called thespians. Well, the theatre, as one would imagine, was showing its age, but still, it was very obvious where all the important bits were. We got yelled at for taking a photo of Fred there. They said that you couldn’t take photos of any dolls or toys there. Go freaking figure. Anyhow, we sat and imagined what it would be like to be sitting there and listening to a new tragedy by Sophocles. It was really something else.
Then we climbed on, for the Acropolis is on one for the three mountains of Athens and saw the Acropolis and The Theatre of Apollo. This theatre has been reconditioned and even brought up to ADA standards. It was still quite the sight to behold. I was more taken with it than the Acropolis. Afterwards, we climbed down and got around to the front of the Theatre of Apollo and as we were no longer in the site, we took photos with Fred.
Afterwards, we headed back to the parking lot and there was George waiting for us. Next, he whisked us away to The Temple of Zeus, then to the Museum of Art and Science. We paused in front of the National Library and he told us the story of how the White House came to be fashioned after it.
By this point it was after noon, so George took us to Zorba, a lovely restaurant in the old port of Athens. He joined us for lunch and we sat for an hour, eating, drinking and laughing. I never heard him say a bad word about anyone and I felt quite safe in his care. He even escorted me to the bathroom, but what he didn’t tell me was that there was a metal door I needed to push through to get out of the elevator. I went back to the first floor and pounded upon it until the receptionist came and asked me what was wrong. She explained how it worked and I felt a little silly. :P
For lunch, we started with a salad, which was huge by any standards, certainly enough for three people – tomatoes, green peppers, olives, cheese, red onion, and capers. Then came our apps, grilled prawns - heads intact. We ate the usual bits and tossed the heads to the gulls. As we waited for our lunch, we drank wine and fed bread to the fish.
Lunch arrived and it was a treat. George had seafood (shrimp and mussels) and spaghetti. TBG had shrimp and spaghetti and I had penne pasta with chicken and vegetables. All of it was incredible and we gorged ourselves.
After lunch, I was ready to head back to the ship, but TBG wanted to visit a grocery store, so George took us to a Hypermarket, the stories of grocery store. The first floor was fresh meats and vegetables, the second floor, the frozen, cheese, cereal, dried items, like flour, sugar, and pet food. The top floor had detergents, cosmetics, stuff like shampoo, soap, etc. and household items, plus a restaurant and a playground for the kids. It was fun to look and try to imagine doing one of our weekly jaunts there. I was just impressed that you could take the shopping carts up on an escalator.
Then it was back to the ship and had a long crash and burn before dinner. I wrote and quilted, TBG napped and read. It was nice to have a tub so I could soak a bit after all that walking. I have yet to go on a cruise and gain weight. We always seem to walk it off on tours.
Anyhow, I still wasn’t very hungry, but I knew TBG was getting anxious, so we went up to dinner only 35 minutes later than usual. We didn’t get our seat in the corner, instead we got one where we could look out at Athens as we left port. That was very cool. It always amazes me when the ship backs up for some reason. Anyhow, I started with a quail and venison pate with onion jam and followed it with some fried chicken. I didn’t really want fried chicken, but I didn’t feel like any of the other entrées. Lazlo was doing a spicy seafood and pasta dish, which sounded good, but it had clams, so it was right out… except he made a special one for me with no clams. Good manners kept me from refusing it, but between that and the intermezzo, by the time dinner arrived, I was done in. TBG started with mushroom soup, followed it by a Caesar, then the pasta as it was only fair that we share, then he had a rib eye steak… then some of my chicken and then dessert (amaretto ice cream). Oof…
We wandered around and ended up back in the cabin where we found our departure information. We talked about logistics (i.e. getting a last laundry load in) and everything. It’s hard to believe that a week from now, I will be sitting in front of my old computer, dealing with demanding cats and all the usual stuff that results from vacation. Of course, the best is yet to come – I still have Sicily, Pompeii, and Rome to look forward to.