Unfortunately I don’t speak Greek, a situation I hope to remedy over the next 3 years.
When I take the dog for a walk and the obligatory espresso freddo we communicate via the English language. Much appreciated by me!
What confuses shop keepers and cafe owners is what the hell am I doing hanging around in Athens during the summer holiday period.
Conversations usually go this way:
What are you doing here in Athens?
My wife has a job here and we will be here for at least 3 years.
But why would you do that?
Because it is exciting and a new experience for us to live here.
Ok. When are you going to an island?
I am not sure. We have just arrived in Athens and my wife has just started and it is the busiest time of year for her?
Are you going tomorrow? Which island will you go to?
You get the gist. There was a two week period in August when I think we were close to the only people left in this city.
We haven’t been to an island yet. (Last time we were in Greece we did have a weekend break in Santorini – brilliant!).
We will do it soon. I am confident. In the meantime we have been exploring the coast on the mainland close to Athens.
Here are some highlights.
Lake Vouliagmeni (sunken lake) in the heart of the Athenian Riviera, 20km south of the city, is a warm water lake and a therapeutic spa. It has a load of seats with umbrellas around the edge and boasts food and drink table service. Small fish bite at your feet while you are swimming removing the dead skin cells. An interesting experience.
On a recent weekend we hired a car and ventured further. This time to Cape Sounion, 69km south-southeast of Athens.Weirdly we didn’t end up swimming this time, just couldn’t find a beach that suited, but we came across some stunning scenery , views of the Aegean and the Temple of Poseidon ruins pictured.
I have left the best for last as far as the perfect Sunday outing. Last weekend we went to Porto Germeno, 48km northwest of Athens, a coastal settlement surrounded by forested mountains.
A relaxing swim in the strikingly blue sea and a pleasant Greek seafood lunch at a beachside taverna. Hard to beat.
We have just purchased a car. More day trips are on the cards and island holidays in the planning. I promise!
Cheers and Yiassas