Athens-Kalambaka

It's Greek to Me

August 6, 2005

We arrived in Athens this morning after a 9 hour flight from Bangkok. We left at 12:30 am so we were served dinner at 2:00 am. It reminded us of our college days where we'd eat after the bars closed at the local Perkins. Not good for the waistline. Once we arrived in Athens the entry process was easy and pretty quick since it was 6:00 am in the morning. We had looked for some ferry tickets to one of the Greek islands and they looked pretty booked but we thought we'd give it a try. We took the express bus from the airport to Piraeus and talked to numerous ferry agents and the only ferry available would have left at 8:00 pm and we decided to try another route to get to Istanbul. As we left the port area a nice man helped us to find the correct bus to the bus terminal. While waiting for the bus another woman gave us two free bus tickets as we had asked her if the bus we were waiting for was the right one. The Greeks seem to be very friendly and kind so far. Unfortunately the bus terminal we went to didn't serve the town we wanted so we grabbed a taxi and got to Terminal B and got our tickets to Trikala which would get us to Kalambaka-a village right below the monasteries of Meteora. The bus ride was uneventful and the landscape reminded us of western Colorado and Utah. Very dry and hilly. Once we arrived in Trikala the bus driver told us which bus to grab to Kalambaka and we went inside to purchase our tickets. Craig had some difficulties remembering where we wanted to go so he kept saying, "Trikala, Trikala." The lady behind the desk had a confused look on her face and said "You're in Trikala." I came over and told her we wanted to Kalambaka and we all had a hearty laugh. She asked where we were from and we said the U.S. and she said that we could have seats 1 & 2 since it was our first time in Greece and we'd have the best views. At this point we are pleased as punch about the generosity of the people here. They just seem so nice and friendly. Upon arriving in Kalambaka a man named George approached us to see if we needed a room and we said yes so we followed him to a hotel where we scored a room with our own bath, TV, refrigerator and balcony which looks out to the monasteries. For dinner we treated ourselves to our first authentic gyros and watched the sunset at the unbelievable hour of 9:00pm. What a long day!





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