Saturday, July 20, 2013

Athens in a Day!

After our lunch and shopping, we walked to the ancient Agora.

First we went to the museum which is in the best preserved building in Athens, the Stoa of Attalos, dating back to 2 BC! The museum has many of the artifacts that have been found at the site.

Here the open square was transversed by the Panathenaic Way, a covered walkway, surrounded by public buildings. The Agora was a center for social and religious activities, commerce, theater and athletic performances were held here as well.

We walked to the Temple of Hephaistos, which is also very well preserved, I believe it was at one time a church, which helps to keep the ruins preserved.

And then we left the Agora...can you believe our day in port still wasn't done? Nope, we still had one more stop to go! Our next stop was the New Acropolis Museum.

We then zoomed through a flea market to meet our driver for a ride to the museum.  This next picture is blurry, which I really like about it.  It's just how the walk felt...a big blur!  Chaos!

At this point, my dad was getting tired of walking and standing. He has a bad knee and with the 55,000 stairs we had climbed already that day, or what felt like that many anyway! He decided to skip the museum and he and my mom went to a little café for some beer and snacks! The rest of us went to the museum. The museum opened in 2009 and houses the artifacts of the Acropolis.

As you walk in you are walking over excavations of ruins that were discovered while building the museum. 

We went through the museum with Georgia and she explained many of the pieces there, beginning with the pottery and what the different markings meant as far as the dating and history. And then we moved to the various statues of offerings to Athena. Then we moved to the statues of the Porch of the Maidens. The originals are here – the ones in Greece anyway! They are currently being restored and you can see how they are doing that process. 

Then we moved to the top floor where Georgia told us what the panels on the top of the Parthenon meant – what the mythology told us and showed us how the gods were represented. 

If you like mythology, archaeology, ancient history – this was a totally fascinating day! For me, it was absolutely amazing!

After the museum, we made our way back to the ship in plenty of time. We relaxed a bit on our balcony for sail away. We'd now gotten used to ordering some snacks from room service when we got back to the ship- the cheese platter was a hit. 

We had dinner in the Main Dining Room. Once again the staff was wonderful. We really glad to have chosen My Time Dining. We had no problem getting reservations when we wanted them, and were seated at "our table". Our waiter automatically brought Alex a plate with two steaks - no sides. Love it!

After dinner, my parents went their way, Keith back to the room - he's not one for shows - it seems he'd rather watch the limited tv and movies in the room. He likes his downtime. And the kids and I went to see the Ice Show. 

It was really good. Who would think they could pull off an ice show of that caliber on a moving ship? It’s a very small rink, and they still manage to do some pretty impressive moves!

Afterwards Alex of course left to go to the teen club, the rest of us went to bed. 

Tomorrow, another big day of ancient history!

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