Greek Tragedy

Trip Start Aug 20, 2005
Trip End Apr 15, 2006

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Thursday, December 15, 2005

Looking back at our last blog entry one month ago I now realize just how busy Tut (aka hikemeister) has kept me. At any rate it is time for an update. For all of you geography philes a quick rundown on our route. In Croatia we got as far south as Dubruvnik, but because of unclear political and road conditions we decided to retrace our steps a little, go back north to Split and catch a ferry to Ancona, Italy. From there we went to Assisi for a day before heading to Rome. South to Naples then across the boot to Brindisi to catch a ferry to Greece. A couple of days in Olympia and now we are on the coast in southern Greece.

Its so easy to put into a few sentences the miles we have covered in the past month but difficult to put into words the variety of experiences we have enjoyed. The weather for example has run from snow and hail in Split to sunny and warm in Greece. Most of the past 30 days have had some rain but we've managed to drive, ferry, or be in museums on the worst of them plus the van has kept us dry and comfortable. Other days we just put on our rain gear and go about our business.

Campgrounds, although mostly closed, are available with enough frequency to suit us and we rarely have to "camp where u wanna". Campground facilities range from "nicer than our house" to "roughing it" and sometimes that dictates how long we stay in an area. The last couple for example have had abundant orange trees full of ripe fruit for the taking so we have stocked up on vitamin C.

The food in these countries, Croatia, Southern Italy and Greece is as different as night and day with the exception of pizza which is available everywhere. We did go to one of Naples best pizza parlors for lunch one day and thoroughly enjoyed enough pizza to last us until breakfast the next day. Croatian food seemed a lot plainer and with less variety and we haven't been in Greece long enough to adequately make a gastromic assessment. If it were a contest, Italy would win as of today but we have a lot of Greece to eat our way through yet.

Our two ferry rides have been different and interesting. Our first to Italy, was on Thanksgiving night. We had a little cabin with bath and enjoyed a dinner in the restaurant because we did not have access to our van after we drove it on board along with many other vehicles including large semi trucks. Although it rained hard the passage was smooth and upon arrival at 7am we drove off into the sunshine of Italy. Our second ferry just a few days ago from Italy to Greece set off in high winds and different rules. We were able to sleep in our van, so we didn't get a room and after just a short time on the rolling sea didn't feel like eating. After few more minutes, I was glad I hadn't eaten in a while because as Tut said "I've never seen you so white". Ceiling panels were falling as the hull crashed into the sea and we finally went below deck to our van to sleep and rock. Four AM we disembarked pulled over on the docks and slept until morning, never happier to be on solid ground again.

Before this gets too long, just a note on Rome. Our seven days there were magical. Starting on our first day with our first visit to St. Peters and stumbling upon a vespers service with the Pope presiding, to touring ancient Rome, the Sisten Chapel and all of the other Roman Catholic icons of our youth. Then returning to St Peters on our last day just to soak up the ambiance. I have issues with the church but thankfully was able to put them aside to enjoy the splendor of what Rome has to offer.
The Holidays are upon us although in a much more subdued way here in Europe compared to the US. Our wish is that this season brings joy and contentment to you and your families. We think of all of you, often. Peace Tut and Dan

PS. The picture I'm sending is of us in front of the Veritas manhole cover. Legend has it that it was used as a manhole cover in the street and that people could go there to verify what another was saying. If it was not the truth the mouth would slam shut. As you can see I have no fear of speaking anything but the truth.
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lcfreitas on

Greetings from Brazil
Dan and Tut. Are you planning to go farther than the Emperor Adriano or are you traying to find a lost treasure? Sounds spectacular this last entry. Keep moving..

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