This post is basically a picspam of Nafplion. There’s really nothing much else but beautiful scenery around here. I wonder if the people living here ever get tired of it? Or at least, be immune to it. Nearly all the Greek students in the program are dying to leave the country; while we Americans would love to move here for this scenery can really be found nowhere else.
This morning we climbed the large, looming castle on the mountain overlooking Nafplion. The heat wasn’t too overwhelming and the journey was made infinitely more fun with everyone going together.
Yay friends! ♥
I love stairways, particularly ones hidden in the middle of cities. They always look so mysterious and promising — cooome, climb me, I offer hidden landscapes away from the little ones down on the ground.
The first set of fascinating stairs are the ones in the Center for Hellenic Studies, the building where I’ll be working (and is hosting us students for this program). The stairs spiral upwards creakily to the attic, leading to an adorable little balcony where we interns like to sit, chat, and chill in the beautiful scenery.
The past few days have been really fun, but also utterly exhausting. It’s hard to believe it’s already Friday, where has the time gone?!
Aside from classes, we also have excursions to various ruins and points of interest. These trips mean that we’ve been kept completely busy from morning to night. And because the Greeks eat dinner very late, one day of activities goes from 8:00am to 8:30pm. As a friend noted to my surprise, that’s 12 1/5 straight hours of activities.
We first visited Mycenae, famous for The Treasury of Atreus and the Lion Gates at the citadel. They were just as impressive as the books made them sound.
It’s strange, but I’ve already spent three nights in Greece! The days have truly passed by really quickly; our schedules are always packed full with activities and with limited internet access, unfortunately there isn’t as much time to do detailed blogging as I wish.
Oo-la-la! The French actually say this a lot. But according to Eva, it’s more like an “oops!” or “uh-oh!” than an expression of amazement. Looks like I’ve been using it wrong my entire trip, since I’ve been saying oo-la-la to everything.
Went solo again on the Paris subway. The train cars are so old that they have no AC, so that the only wind comes from the open windows. The doors are half automatic; to open, you have to pull this handle or push a button. Yet there’s a familiarity in this subway, that reminds me of those in Boston or Shanghai so that I can’t help but feel right at home.
I bought a red beret for 8 euros, only to find one for 4 later. Lesson learned: do not buy from shops right in view of major tourist point! Once out of sight of major tourist attraction, things are much cheaper.
First destination, Notre Dame:
(I’m getting reaaally good at rolling those French r’s. Notrrreh Dam. Merrrci.)
It’s amazing how many things can happen in such a few hours. Elise and Eva took me on a Parisian night adventure. And I have to say…why is Paris so pretty? And so exciting?
The line 6 subway travels aboveground, crossing the river towards the Eiffel Tower. An accordion player snuck on board a few stops behind us, playing what in my mind was perfect Parisian music.
Dinner was ham and cheese crepe. Dessert was nutella and dark chocolate crepe. I learned how to pronounce crepe with their funny little r sounds in French.
Today was my last day with this Chinese tour group my dad found for me. We have traveled through five countries, ordered from menus in three languages, and walked through way too many cities under limited times. Right now I’m back in Paris, catching up on all the emails waiting for me.
I originally did not expect to update because I thought I wouldn’t have access to Internet, but this Chinese tour group I’m with picked a really nice hotel with free wifi. Didn’t bring my laptop though, so no picture updates (yet).
Driving through France is gorgeous.