Monday, March 15, 2010

Tis the Ides of March

March 12th, 2008, I went with some friends to tour Greece and Italy (we had all just finished classical literature). I had waited over a year to go on this trip, and in 14 days it was over. What remains is the memories and the friendships that were made. So, here's a sampling of our little adventure. :)

Picture it- you've been up for almost 18 hours flying across vast oceans and continents. As you cross mainland Europe, it's complete and utter darkness except for the lights of the small villages you're flying over. As you approach Northern Italy - the sunrise. The fairytale land of Italy suddenly emerges from the darkness as the light swiftly rises across the horizon. Your plane lands at 6:30 in the morning Italy time and you hit the road running to maximize every second of your dreamlike stay.

We were in Rome on the Ides of March, so this Caesar statue was all dressed up for his day. In case you don't know the story, go brush up on your Roman history. ;)

The Trevi Fountain - if you throw one coin in, you will go back to Italy. If you throw 2 coins in, you will also find true love. I threw two in. ;) PS - the romantic rome you think of because you've watched too many movies does exist - underneath all the tromping grounds of tourists. You just have to get off the beaten trail and explore a bit. ;)

The Titus Arch - General Titus earned an arch for him after he besieged Jerusalem and destroyed the last of those 'rebellious' Jews. Because of this arch, we know what the candlestick and many more of the temple treasures looked like before they were taken away (they're all depicted on the inside of the arch)

And how could you go to Rome and not see the Coliseum? That building is absolutely ENORMOUS!!! And to think it was built to make killing people a spectator sport... :'(

This is the Porch of the Maidens on the Acropolis in Athens, Greece. A cool note on the history of the building - when it was built a certain nationality was chosen "because they are the only ones strong enough to support a roof." Well... If you look at the rest of the building anything that the ladies weren't holding up did fall down. Hmm... ;) And an interesting note on the weather - I guess that in the middle of March, winds from the FAR south pick up dust from the Sahara desert in Africa and bring it across the Mediterranian to Greece. That's why the sky is so dusty.

This is the bridge that connects mainland Greece with the Pelopenesse (sp?), the cow-udder look-like peninsula hanging off of Greece. Before this bridge was built it took hours to get around to the island. A special note on the water in Greece - go ahead and jump in when you're at the beach! The water is so clear and clean! Because it was colder when we went, we just got wet up to our knees. ;)
It's been two years... I can't believe that time has gone by so fast! I really hope that I can go back and explore the areas that we didn't get to see very much of.