After Tenio’s blood sample is on its way to the laboratory, we are off to the sea again. But wait, just “around the corner” there is an archaeological site to visit, Epidauros, which is said to be worth seeing because of its theatre. Therefore, on the way from the vet to the sea, we stop at the ancient former sanatorium.
The huge visitor car park gives us an idea of what must happen here during the peak tourist season. Now, at the end of January, the number of parked cars can be counted on two hands in the free car park. The reduced entrance fee during the winter months makes us happy and almost makes us forget the cool temperatures of around 5 degrees on this day 😉
While only the foundation walls remain of most of the buildings on the site, the 2400-year-old theatre is fascinatingly well preserved. Because of this and its dimensions, it impresses us very much! We climb the tribune of the 12,000-seat theatre in complete peace and quiet and without any other visitors. This is the best way to test the repeatedly mentioned good acoustics for ourselves. In fact, without amplification, the sound is transmitted from the stage to the highest tiers!
Afterwards, we spend a relaxed week at a beautiful spot between vegetable fields and the beach. As soon as the sun appears, a corner sheltered from the wind is enough to make it very comfortable outside, even with the current cooler temperatures. These cooler daytime temperatures actually bring even sub-zero temperatures for the night and light snowfall for a short period – while at the same time you can hear the sea roaring. An exciting experience!
Feel free to click on the following gallery to “listen in”:
As the water supply slowly runs low, we set off again and drive to the northern town of Nafplion. The harbour town has three old fortresses and of course all the advantages of civilisation.
Here, at the latest, we discover our love for Greek baked goods 😉 Shortly after entering Greece, we were delighted to discover that there is at least one bakery in every town in this country. So we “sweeten” the next three weeks by enjoying the Greek winter sun at various beautiful campsites in and around Nafplion. It even gets warm enough to bravely take a short swim in the Mediterranean Sea, which has cooled down quite well.
Click on the following picture to open a gallery with pictures from Nafplion:
On a drive outside the city, we discover a truck scale between countless orange plantations. This seems to be intended for the harvesting vehicles. There is no one there, but the scales and digital display are working.
Finally the opportunity to find out how much our motorhome Silvio actually weighs in everyday life! When the motorhome was accepted in June last year, it was 2645kg. But at that time the cupboards were still empty and no tanks were installed for water and the additional diesel of the auxiliary heating. So we now estimate the weight incl. occupants at around 3.0 tonnes and are amazed when the scale spits out the result: 3160 kg
So we don’t have much air left to reach the max. permissible total weight of 3190kg 😉
Slowly but surely, the day for Tenio’s lab result is approaching. We therefore move back in the direction of the vet’s office and visit Mycenae on the way. The ancient fortress and city had its heyday around 3,500 years ago. Therefore, there are many ground plans of the former houses and palaces to “marvel at” 😉 The fortress wall and entrance gate are well preserved, with a correspondingly old relief showing two lions. If you get closer to the wall, it becomes clear how huge the rock blocks used to build the city fortifications are! It is therefore not surprising that it is also called the Cyclopean Wall. We will especially remember the graves on the extensive grounds. In addition to two “burial chambers”, there are also real burial chambers, which are built like oversized beehives and are partly still intact. Huge and very impressive!
The following gallery contains a few impressions for you:
At this point we have already been in Greece for two months. Well rested and curious about new discoveries, we would like to travel further to Turkey. The only thing that “still” prevents us from doing so is the unavailable test result of Tenio’s blood sample. After the four weeks mentioned for the evaluation are already over, we call the vet’s office every day from then on. Eventually, the laboratory result is available, at least in digital form, and we are more than relieved and in good spirits to soon be able to travel via Athens towards Turkey with a short detour.
Unfortunately, we made this performance without the hurdles of bureaucracy! -.- Suddenly the laboratory result has to be verified by an official veterinarian! Until then, we thought this could be done in the practice where the blood was taken. But there they had “put a flea in the ear” and we had no choice but to go back to Nafplion. Our plan B, to simply visit another vet, helped us to get a bit closer to our goal, but could not spare us the trip to the authorities.
An attempt to contact them by phone failed because of the language barrier. English could not or would not be spoken.
Therefore, when we arrived on site, we were already prepared for a long or, alternatively, unsuccessfully short afternoon in Greek officialdom. To our surprise, we met a veterinarian who had studied in Munich. This facilitated communication immensely, but not immediately the achievement of our goal for the day. At first we were put off until the following week (after all, they have to check in detail what the requirements of Turkey are…), but finally we were able to leave the office again after an hour with all the documents. So we leave Nafplion again the same evening and drive half the distance to Athens.
There we arrive together with early summer temperatures around 20 degrees. With a view of the Acropolis and the sea of houses in Athens, we enjoy a first coffee before taking a long walk in the green heart of Athens, the Philopappos Hill. The next day, our first stop is the launderette and then a bioethanol shop. Up to now, the “fuel” for our spirit cooker was very hard to come by, but here we can fall back on 5-litre canisters.
We get closer to the history and the most important buildings during a 2.5-hour guided tour of the city. As in Ljubljana, there is also a “Free Walking Tour” on a donation basis. A great concept where locals show tourists around their city. We have an enthusiastic and knowledgeable guide in the form of a studied archaeologist and experience the tour as a successful conclusion to our time in Athens.
Click on the following gallery to see some of our impressions from the capital of Greece:
We would have loved to take a ferry from Athens to Izmir in Turkey. After all, these two cities are geographically on the same level. But unfortunately, the ferry connections between the two countries have been suspended for several years for political reasons. So it is a good 1,000 kilometres ahead of us to reach the Turkish border. Looking in the direction of the crescent moon, we are heading for new adventures and look forward to reporting to you soon from the Orient! 🙂
Greetings from Chris&Sophia