Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Med Cruise: Olympia, Part 2

Well, we had a relaxing 4-day weekend, which was lovely.  And it's been all rainy and overcast lately (hello England!) and colder so I've been drinking tea like it's going out of style.  And also watching Doctor Who because I've somehow become addicted to it as well as tea.

And then this morning I get to go back and look at my pictures from Greece, where it was nonstop sunshine and warmth the whole time we were there.  And lots of ruins.

If I had a time machine (or a TARDIS), I would totally go back in time to see what these places looked like back in their heyday (though for Olympia, back in the day women weren't even allowed to watch the Olympic Games, so I'd need a TARDIS with a Romulan cloaking device).

I think this part was a temple to Hera but I could be making that up.  Just the one column still standing though.

Click the photo to see it larger...Greek writing.  I think that Greece felt like more of a foreign country to me because of the different alphabet, is that weird?

And here's the original Olympic "stadium", still with the original marble starting blocks for races.  And no stadium seating for spectators!

This is the archway leading to the stadium, only I took this from the stadium side so this is leading back to the rest of the archaeological site.  And next up is my favorite part of the site:

Ok, so it doesn't look like much NOW, but these were the bases for I think 16 statues of Zeus (and, by the way, "Zanes" is the plural of Zeus...who even knew you had to have a plural form of Zeus?).  Whenever an athlete cheated in the Games and was caught, he was fined a big chunk of money and then the Olympic coordinators used that money to commission the Zanes which were put in a row leading to the archway to go out to the stadium.  Better yet, carved into the bases was every Cheater Cheater Pumpkin Eater's name and how he cheated!  Isn't that fantastic?  Public shaming!  Totally a warning to the next crop of would-be cheaters.  I wonder how they cheated back then, did they have ye ancient steroids, or was it more like intentionally tripping other competitors in the foot races...

I think this is what's left of a monument to Philip of Macedon?  Yep, Wikipedia confirms.  We had to stand here for a few minutes to get a photo without a gaggle of tourists in it.

Then we took one with two tourists in it : )

That's pretty much it for the archaeological site at Olympia.  We also went to the museum, which was pretty nice (and also great because air conditioning!) but we didn't take any pictures in there.  Lee and I do this thing at museums where we start out really interested in everything we're looking at and we read all the signs, but after a while our eyes glaze over and we start just skipping around to what looks most interesting because we're getting hungry.  They had lots of little clay figurines, bits of armor, some statues, that kind of thing.  Then we made our way back to the bus to go back to Katakolon; this was the day that the boat left port kinda early so we didn't want to take any chances of missing it.  Because that would suck.  On the way back to the bus, I stopped to get a postcard, and the shop owner gave it to me for free because it was easier for him than actually ringing up a single postcard, ha.  The postcard was funny though, apparently they do reenactments of ceremonies at Olympia like I think they start the Olympic flame there?  But the postcard had a bunch of chicks on it dressed up like extras from Xena:  Warrior Princess, so that was fun.

We took this just because I'm like hey!  That's how you write "Olympia" in Greek.

Back in Katakolon, we walked around till we found a restaurant that looked okay, and Lee had his first experience with baklava.

IS YUMMY.  If you've never had it before, you should go find a place that makes it and try it.  It's like layers of flaky phyllo dough with finely chopped walnuts and lots of honey and sometimes you can get it with ice cream which just makes it that much yummier.

So then we got back on the boat, and this was the one day that the sun set directly off the back of the boat, so we took some pictures.

I like the clouds in this photo and the kind of hazy quality over the island there.  I  just think it looks neat.

And I think this might be the most flattering photo of me ever.

Next cruise port:  Athens!


CCsMom said...

In that last photo, the lighting is JUST PERFECT! I like it, too! Makes me want to go on a cruise (since we've never been). Hope your anniversary is WONDERFUL this weekend. Love you!

Vicki Burns said...

I LOVE LOVE LOVE the last photo! I think you need to find a way to put it on your driver's license and passport. :)

Loving your photos of Greece! Want to go with our friends Vic and Mo. He's Greek. That would be cool! You should meet us there. :)

How in the world has lee never before had baklava? Grew up with family friends who were Armenian. Best baklava EVER. Now I need some...