Vacation-part 1

Oh Greece! How I love thee! Let me count the ways:

1. I love thee for thy wondrous food. images images-1
The vegetables that taste so exceptionally fresh, prepared so simply. Why doesn’t Greek salad taste like that at home? What DO they put in that coffee?!? Could calamari even get any better? Baklava is just the best dessert on the planet. (But I cannot stomach ouzo. It is just too licorice-y, and I do NOT like licorice at all.)

2. I love thee for thy exceptional weather. DSCF0220
Living on the Wet Coast of Canada, it is such a treat to wake up in the morning, look outside at the blue, blue sky and just know that it’s going to be another hot, breezy day and that I’d better put sunscreen on. It may rain, true, but it will likely last all of ten minutes, then it’ll be back to sunny, hot and breezy. Love, love, LOVE it!

3. I love thee for thy art and antiquities. DSCF0047
As DD said, if she lived in Greece, she would be constantly digging up her back yard, finding pieces of marble statues or columns and inviting the local archaeologists over to have a look. In so many areas of Greece, ancient ruins are just part of the everyday scenery. Living in such a new country as Canada, this is a mind-boggling concept. The museums are all chock-full of absolute treasures, just waiting for you to go and admire them in the flesh rather than in a textbook.

4. I love thee for thy ancient history. DSCF0101
Again, living in Canada (Western Canada, yet, which has even less history than the East – except for the Native culture, I suppose), I find the whole concept of a building being in use for 500 years almost unbelievable. And to be at, say, the site of the ancient royal palace at Mycenae, and to see all the stone foundations for all the buildings that were constructed there in something like 1280 BC – it just scrambles my brain to think about it!

5. I love thee for thy Acropolis and the Parthenon found thereon. DSCF0038
My first sight of it was walking down the street from our hotel the morning after our luggage-less arrival. There it was, a scant ten-minute walk away, towering majestically above the city! Seeing it all lit up at night is even more memorable. And to actually walk up the steps to the top and stand beside something that you have studied at school, seen a million photos of, have just absorbed into your body of knowledge over the years is simply amazing (despite the ever-present scaffolding around the Parthenon). DD was awestruck (and speechless for about a minute – no doubt a record for her!) and I had to pinch myself to accept that this experience was real.

6. I love thee for thy colours. DSCF0236
Although I have seen the Mediterranean Sea before, its azure blue colour never ceases to stun me. It’s just so blue! And it’s a very floaty body of water too: it’s much easier to float in than the Pacific Ocean. Is it the salt content maybe? And olive trees really are – um – olive-coloured. Now I see where the name comes from, or else the colour. (I guess the trees came first.) And the white or pale buildings of Santorini are so picturesque that I just couldn’t take it all in! All those houses perched on the cliffs, with their predominantly blue doors and shutters are so beautiful and so quintessentially Greek!

7. I love thee for thy mountainous landscape. DSCF0239
It is an incomparable experience to arrive at one of the docks in Santorini and look up. Way up. Because the road goes up to the top of that cliff in front of you, and all the towns are along that volcano ridge up there. The road is narrow, with few guardrails, and many, many switchbacks on its arduous journey skyward. In a big coach, gazing out the window, this can be scary, because all you can see is the blue-green sea and way, way, way down to the port, with nothing in between. Of course, being a BC resident, I am quite used to mountains, but this was something else!

Just a taste, people (don’t want to bore you – looking at someone’s holidays pics can be quite tedious, after all), but there is a bit more to come. Like Istanbul. Like what I didn’t like (that’s a pretty short post). But I need to go nap now …


15 responses to “Vacation-part 1

  1. Sigh.

    That is all. πŸ™‚

    • Ricardipus – So I’m thinking you don’t really want to see the rest of the photos, do you? I’m pretty perceptive about things like that …

  2. Justme – I would go back in a heartbeat too, but I would do more of the islands this time: more of a beach holiday, as opposed to a cultural holiday. I suppose I’d have to drag Porsche Guy with me for that instead of DD … should work!

  3. That would be GREECE! not Geece….sigh!

  4. Geece is one of my most favorite places! Your post is making me want to go back soon. I am so glad you had a wonderful time! x

  5. XUP – So many good-looking Greek men, so little time …

  6. Where are your photos of swarthy Greek men dressed in flimsy white cottons?

  7. Looks like you had a great vacation. I was in Greece many years ago and I think I need to go back.

    • Linda – And of course, coming from France, Greece is just a three-hour flight away for you. Not three flights totalling fourteen hours plus connection time as it was for me. But it was still very much worth it!

  8. Irene – There’s also the glorious yogourt mixed with honey, the scrumptious olives, the sweet watermelon, the freshly-made tzatziki … should I go on?

    Jazz – I understand exactly what you mean about being anchored to where you live. DD and I are history buffs, so we were absolutely enthralled with the thought that we were walking where people had walked a couple of thousand years ago!

    Hannah – A few people actually tried to discourage me from going in July – too hot, they said! Yes, it was hot, but we honestly didn’t find it unbearably so. And yes, let’s try to meet! That would be fun! I’ll send you my email in a comment to your blog (as long as you don’t publish it! LOL) and we’ll see if we can make something work.

  9. Wow! Those pictures are great! Greece is great, but it does actually get cold there. ( I know for a fact, I went in March)
    Nowhere near as cold as here, but still I think you went during a better season. πŸ™‚

    P.S. We’ll be in Vancouver next week. Do you want to meet up for coffee or something? Or will you be too busy getting back to normal after your trip?

  10. Ah, good Greek food and wonderful weather – pictures of that could never ever bore me.

    It must be strange to live in a place with so much history. Somehow it seems I’d feel much more anchored to where I live.

  11. Well, I’ll tell you one thing, you make me want to go there really bad for all those reasons and I can’t just pick one. I’d go for the baklava…

  12. I know what you mean about wrapping your head around something that has been around for hundreds – thousands! – of years.

    Santorini looks beautiful – but wasn’t all that white blinding?

    • VioletSky – The white IS bright, true, but all you have to do is switch your gaze to the blue sea and your vision is fine again. I would have to say that Santorini was my favourite place on the trip. I’d really like to go back there for a longer visit.