My Last Post!

Tuesday, 26 June 2012 05:39 by keb005

Hello!

 

I have been home for a week now and finally caught up with everything and got my last pictures uploaded so I can talk about our last couple days in Athens! Later that Thursday night we went to watch the art class present their projects. They made books about their experience in Athens and picked a particlar site that meant something to them. They were all really really awesome and you can just tell how much we all truely love Athens. Then right after the presentations we had or graduation. We had a few of our teachers speak as well as people from the Athens Centre and then we got our diplomas. It was a simple ceremony but it was really nice to have all of us and our teachers together one last time. After our graduation we went to dinner all together. It was delicious food and a nice way to spend time with our teachers and everyone. It was hard to say goodbye to them :( 

Then the next day we had one last field trip together to the Parliament building! We all met at the Athens Centre and said goodbye to everyone that worked there and then we went to the Parliament building to take a tour which was really awesome! We got to sit in the conference room on the chairs! It was a beautiful building and also it was nice to be able to hear actual facts about their situation. All we heard was what was in the media and from our teachers so it was nice to be able to hear information that was official. 

 

Outside the Parliament building!

 

The Conference Room!!!!

 

Outside Parliament with Syntagma Square in the background!

 

After our tour we just relaxed and then went out with our professor for our last dinner in Athens. He took us to this really awesome restaurant near Syntagma. It was outside and there was a band there playing traditional Greek music. The weather was perfect and it was beautiful and so much fun! It was a perfect ending to or adventure!

 

I have now been home for a week and saw all my family and friends from home. I also have started work again and got back into my normal routine almost right away. As much as I loved Greece and my experience I was happy to come home and see everyone. It was nice to come home and see that everyone missed me. I felt so loved. I also love having lots to talk about with everyone about my experiences. This truely was an amazing experience and I feel so blessed to know that my family and friends supported me and are excited to have me back!

 

This will be my last blog post. It has been fun!!

 

~Kerri

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The last week :(

Thursday, 14 June 2012 17:06 by keb005

This past week and a half has been filled with studying and writing our papers :/ So nothing too exciting has been happening except for some things over the weekend. Our friend here was celebrating her 21st birthday on friday so after our classes we had a girls day at the beach :) We had a nice relaxing day after a hard week of classes and studying. It was nice to relax and enjoy the beautiful 90 degree and sunny weather we have been having :) Then we went out to dinner and celebrated at her apartment with cake! It was so fun! We also went out for a little because it was her 21st! :) Great start to the weekend!

 

 

This is a few of us on the beach! The birthday girl is on the right!

 

Us at dinner with the birthday girl!

 

Saturday we had a relaxing morning and then went to Athen's Pride. We wanted to see what it was all about and it was pretty cool. They had a bunch of tents set up with food and things to buy and then they had some events throughout the day. One event was the men's choir which sounds pretty cool. And then another was a parade with floats and music. It was pretty cool to see something like this in another country! Then we went out to dinner with one of our professors because him and his wife wanted to take us out. We went to this asian restaurant which was sooooooo delicious! We got to sit on the floor and eat which I have never done before so I thought it was pretty cool. After we got some ice cream and just relaxed for the night. 

Sunday was another day to finish all of our papers. My roommate and I both had 5 papers total so we had been working on them for a while! Just another relaxing day.

 

The rest of this week we have been studying like crazy! We had to take our Greek oral exam on Tuesday. Then we had to take our Greek Monuements and written Greek final yesturday. And we just had our last tests in both our archaeology classes today! We are done with our finals and so happy! Tonight we are going to watch the people in the art class give their presentations and then we are having our graduation from the Athens Centre and a farewell dinner. I cannot believe this trip is coming to an end. It is hard to put into words exactly how we feel about leaving because it is very bitter sweet but I would like to share with you something one of our friends here wrote about leaving. Her name is Carrie Harshbarger and she captures the way all of us our feeling in this paragraph:

"Although I’m starting to feel really sad about having to leave in less than a week, I feel nothing but blessed to have been given this opportunity to learn, grow, laugh, cry, explore, and meet so many wonderful people who have truly made these past three months very special. Starting a new year of my life here has caused the end of this adventure to be even more meaningful, since as our Greek teacher has said on numerous occasions, “Life is full of circles-every circle must close but that only means that another one is beginning.” As this circle and year of my life come to a close, I can only feel happy to be able to look back on all of the experiences that I have had and be excited for the new circle that has begun."

We have  all changed from this experience and now we get to move on to the next chapter in our life. I am sure I speak for all of us when I say that we will always cherish the memories we had together here. This truely was a once in a lifetime experience and something we will always remember. 

I loved everything about this experience. I love the new friends I met in the program, everyone from the Athens Centre, the Greek and their culture, the food, and living here for three months. As much as I loved it, I am glad to go home and see my family and friends again. As much as I love it here I do miss them. 

 

Wish us luck on graduating tonight!! :)

 

~Kerri

 

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My Week!

Sunday, 3 June 2012 21:34 by keb005

Kalispara!

 

Our week has been full of field trips to archaeological sites and museums! 

Last Friday we went to Olympieion to see an archaeological site and a museum. The site was located in Athens and was huge! It was also really pretty and located in a beautiful and fun part of the city. 

 

Archaeological Site at Olympieion

 

This site had many graves of famous people in the ancient times and here is an example of some!

 

The next day we left bright and early to leave for the Peloponnese. The Peloponnese is a peninsula east of Athens. The first day we went to visit two different sites. We saw Perakhora and Epidauros. Perakhora was definitely the msot beautiful site (in my opinion) that we saw so far! It was located by the sea and was on along this big cliff! It was absolutely gorgeous! After our visit we got to go down to the sea and swim, relax and have a snack. We had so much fun! I was taught how to skip a rock properly and enjoyed playing around! The next site we went to that day was Epidauros. This was also a beautiful site. It had a huge amphitheater and to demonstrate the sound quality, our professor had Katie sing for us while we all sat high up in the seats. It was really cool because when she moved around the stage the sound changed and became better or worse. She sang multiple songs and we had a lot of fun listening to her! After our visit we went and checked into our hotel and got settled and then one of our professors took us all out to dinner! It was delicious and we had a lot of different seafood dishes to try. We all really appreciated him taking us out for dinner. Then after we went for ice cream and got the best gelato I ever had! I mixed hazelnut and pistachio and it was a delicious! After we just walked around the town of Nafplio where we were staying and then went back to the hotel and relaxed because we had another long day coming.

 

Walking to the site of Perakhora!

 

Where we went swimming!

 

The beautiful view :)

 

Katie singing to us at Epidauros!

 

Site of Epidauros!

 

Another part of the site!

 

The next day we woke up and went to a museum in Nafplio. It was very nice museum located in the center of the town. After the museum we went to the archaeological site of Mycenae which was amazing! Another one of my top favorites. It was a huge site with beautiful mountains in the background! It also had a really awesome cave to climb in and walk down! We had a lot of fun there. Then we went to the archaeological site of Argive Heraion. We did not spend too much time here because it started raining. So we did a quick walk through and then talked a little more about it on the bus. It was a nice site as well but since it was raining we didnt get to spend too much time there. After we went back to the town of Nafplio to get lunch and then travelled Olympia. Once we got to Olympia we had some dinner and then relaxed at the hotel for the night.

 

 

The Lion's Gate entering Mycenae!

 

The Site!

 

The beautiful mountains!

 

Me in the cave!

 

Argive Heraion!

 

The next day we went to visit the archaeological site and museum of Olympia! It was so awesome! We got to walk/run on the Olympic stadium where the Olympics were created! We also got to see the temple of Zeus and since he is the most powerful Greek god it was awesome to see it! This was another one of my favorite sites. Because I am an athlete it was really amazing to see where the Olympics were started! 

 

 

The Olympic Stadium!

 

The Temple of Zeus!

 

After our visit we went to lunch and then traveled 5 hours back to Athens. The rest of the week was classes and then we had our last field trip of the semester on Friday. We went to Eleusis which is in the west of Athens. It was a small site but we enjoyed it and made the most of our last trip!

 

The Site!

 

We have had a relaxing weekend by just staying in and working on our papers so that we can enjoy our last couple weeks in Athens! We went to Monastraki for part of the day to see one of the famous sandle makers! It was called the Poet Sandle Maker of Athens. He custom makes any style of sandles for your foot and has made some for lots of famous people in the US like Sarah Jessica Parker and Bob Saget! Other than that it has been a relaxing weekend. It is crazy how fast the time went! I am ready to go home to see all of my family and friends but I will miss living in Athens and the new friends I made here!

 

Until next time yeia sas!

 

~Kerri

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Some videos you might enjoy :)

Thursday, 24 May 2012 22:30 by keb005

http://youtu.be/TQTbJmE8LTA

The Changing of the Guards in Athens Greece! They change every hour on the hour in Syntagma square. They are guarding the tomb of the unknown soldier which represents the soldiers that so not come back from war.

http://youtu.be/7uI1OGQh2MQ

This is a video of our Greek professor teaching us how to sing Happy Birthday in Greek! It is such a cute song and has a different meaning in Greek but it is a great song!

http://youtu.be/0JfDV5JpsKM

This is a video of the Nomads in the Sahara singing around the camp fire! They were so awesome and sanfg amny different songs for us!

http://youtu.be/rPKKxVLJ-Ls

This is a video of us riding camels in the Sahara! We love Morocco!

 

I hope you enjoy these videos!! :)

 

~Kerri

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Last Month in Athens :(

Thursday, 24 May 2012 20:24 by keb005

Before I start telling you about this week I would like to shed some light on something we all read on CNN. From what we gathered when reading this article on the internet, the media in the US is talking about how Greece might change back over to the drachma and if they do Greece will fall apart and it is not safe to come and visit Greece. I think it also might have been mentioned that people should cancel their trips if they are planning on coming to Greece. Although it is true that there was rumors that Greece would switch to back to the drachma, it would be devestating to the Greeks as well as the rest of Europe. Because of this, Greece and the rest of Europe will not allow that to happen. I think I speak for all of us when I say that our experience here in Greece has been nothing but amazing. Although the situation for the Greeks may not be the best, it has not, in any way, made us feel unsafe here. If anything, us being here has helped their situation and all tourism helps their situation. So instead of being afraid to come, you should want to come! Greece is a beautiful and wonderful place to visit and has become a second home for us. I would hate to hear that people are afraid to come here because of the innaccurate media in the US. They have been blowing things out of proportion. The Greeks are amazing people and have welcomed us here with open arms.

 

With that being said, I have had yet another amazing experience here in Greece! We started out with having a normal week of classes and starting to get back into things after our spring break. That is until Thursday. On thursday the olympic ceremonies were taking place here in Athens! It was the pass the torch ceremony where Greece shares the olympic flame with England. Some of or fellow classmates were at their art class when a man with the olympic torch ran by. They asked around and were told that the Passing of the Flame ceremony was taking place later that night and David Beckham was going to be there! They passed the information along and we were all so excited to experience something like this! We went later that night and it was pouring rain but we didn't let that ruin our time. It was even free to get into the ceremony! It was so awesome. We got to see Princess Anna and David Beckham as well as famous athletes from Greece. This was a once in a lifetime experience that we would probably not have easily seen back in the US. 

 

Princess Anna and David Beckham walking in!

 

View of the whole stadium!

 

Both Flags Marched out Together

 

Lighting the Flame!

 

I got a good picture of David :) He is the one in the lighter grey suit!

 

Corrinn and I at the Ceremony!

 

Princess Anna receiving the flame!

 

Later on after the ceremony we went back to the Athens Centre to see this Acapella group called Red,Hot and Blue from Yale University. They were really good! They sang some songs of their own, and some songs they re-did. They did a lot of songs we knew like ABC 123 by the Jackson 5, Bear Necessities from the Jungle Book and others as well! I was really impressed and enjoyed it. After we had refreshments and were able to talk to them a little bit which was cool. Especially for Katie because she is a music major and misses being around it. Overall, we had a great night!

This past week we also went on several field trips. We went to the National Museum, an archaeological site near the acropolis, and then to a musuem for tools, a musuem for ceramics and a museum for cycladic art. We had a busy week but it was really interesting and fun! I love how our school takes us out in Athens to learn. It makes it that much more enjoyable and we get to see things we wouldnt normally see as a tourist. 

 

The National Museum in Athens!

 

Archaeological Site near the Acropolis!

 

That is all I have for this week!

 

~Kerri

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Best Spring Break Ever! (Con.)

Tuesday, 15 May 2012 20:26 by keb005

We left Morocco, had a layover in Italy, and landed in Istanbul. We checked into our hostel which ended up being a room for 30 people. It was like a dorm style and 30 people shared a room and a bunch of bathrooms. When we got to the room we met a really nice girl named Sarah and we told her all about our trip. Then she took us to the Grand Bazare which is a huge market in Turkey. She showed us how to use the tram and where a bunch of stuff was because she has been there for a few days already. Later, we came back to the hotel and had dinner before bed. We went to bed early this night because of our crazy travel day the day before.

The next day we woke up and went to visit the Hagia Sophia and the Blue Mosque. These places were absolutly beautiful. It is hard to describe. The Hagia Sophia was a basilica, which turned into a mosque and is now a museum. The blue mosque had tiles everywhere and we had to take our shoes off to walk inside. They were both so fun to visit and some of the most beautiful monuements I have ever seen! After visiting these monuements, we went back to our hostel because we were taking a shuttle to go and get a Turkish Bath! This was kind of like a spa. They took us to go get changed into only towels and then brought us into the sauna where we sat for a while and then these turkish women came and got us and we had to lay on this marble slab, while they brushed the dead skin off of us. Then we washed it off and came back and they gave us a foam massage and washed our bodies! After they took us to this shower type thing and washed the foam off of us and washed our hair for us. Then lastly we got to play in this pool for as long as we wanted before we left. After we got dressed they took us to a room where we could blow dry our hair! It was an unforgettable experience. It was something very different that we had fun trying. After we went to dinner at our hostel and then got ready to go out for the night for Katie's Birthday!! 

The next day we went to the Palace which was absolutely gorgeous! We walked around there for a couple hours and then went and got some lunch and went shopping for a little bit. We bought jerseys for the Istanbul Europe side vs. Istanbul Asia side soccer game that was happening the next day. This is like the super bowl for Istanbul. People would get in fights and some would even be killed over this game, that is how big it was. So we wanted to join in the culture and bought some jerseys. Me and Nathan got the Europe Side (because that is the side our Hostel was on) and then Corrinn, Katie and Sarah all got the Asia side. After we came back to the hostel and got some dinner and then go ready for the night. 

The next day we went out for a nice lunch after and then decided to walk around with our Jerseys on because it was game day! I cannot even begin to tell you how many people said stuff to us. Since we represented both teams they were like you guys cannot be friends! haha So we hugged each other and made a statement to everyone haha But people would pull us over and talk to us and people always commeneted if they liked our team or not. I even got a few marriage proposals! It was too funny! After we were walking and this man challenged me to a backgammon game and said if I won he would give me a free rug! And I won but he didn't give me one...I couldnt find a place to take it home anyway haha. But after we just went back and had dinner and watched the game at the bar near our hostel and then hung out for the night. It was too dangerous to go out because of the game so we just chilled. Europe side ended up winning and there was parades and fire works and so many people screaming in the streets and driving by with flags and stuff. It was such an awesome experience. 

Then the next day we had to go home. We packed up and had another free hookah and then went to the airport and then returned to Greece. Once we got back we went to this tattoo festival in Athens! It was soo cool! There was music and food and drinks and then we could see all the artists samples of tattoos. It was a good time!

 

The Hagia Sophia!

 

Inside the Hagia Sophia!

 

 

 

Us in front of the Blue Mosque!

 

Inside the Blue Mosque!

 

Us in our Jerseys!

 

These guys got excited for my Jersey and started jumping around me!

 

Us out with our new friend Sarah and Frank!

 

View from the roof our hostel!

 

This was the end of our spring break! It was the most amazing experience I have ever had! I enjoyed seeing these different places and meeting some really awesome people!

 

~Kerri

 

 

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Best Spring Break Ever!

Tuesday, 15 May 2012 18:31 by keb005

Kalispara!

To start this entry off I would like to say that words cannot describe this spring break! It was the most amazing 10 days of my life with many life changing experiences. We started our trip off in Spain. While booking plane tickets for this trip having a 20 hour layover in Barcelona, Spain was one of the cheapest ways to get to where we were going. So we decided to make the most of it. We slept for a couple hours in the airport and the got ready, put our stuff in a left luggage locker, and took a bus into the city. The bus was only 5 euros each so it was cheaper than we thought! Once we got there we set up a tour called a "Glimpse of Barcelona" so we could see some of the major sites and make the most of the day we had there. Our tour was a 1 so to kill some time we walked around the shopping street and then stopped at a restaurant and had Paella. It was absolutely delicious! Then we went for our tour and we were the only 3 signed up for it, so it was basically a private tour! We had an awesome time driving around Spain and seeing some of the major sites. My favorite site was the Sagrada Familia. This is a huge church that reminds me of a dribble castle that we make at the beach. It was beautiful! The architect who designed it died recently and it is not even finished! They still have about 15 years left to finish the entire church! After our tour we decided to walk around the older part of Barcelona. We saw many street performers. Then we started to shop. We bought so many clothes!! We wanted to make ourselves look more European! Then after we shopped for a little longer it was time for us to take a bus back to the airport and get ready for our plane to Morocco!

 

 

The shopping street in Barcelona!

 

the LVC girls in front of the Sagrada Familia! Sorry it is side ways but I cant figure out how to fix it on here haha

 

the Olympic Stadium with the eternal flame!

 

After Spain we took a plane to Marrakech, Morocco! We arrived to Morrocco around 1 in the morning and got transported to our hotel. Since the streets were tiny, we had to follow someone through the streets really late which made us a little intimidated. It was scary so we were wondering what we got ourselves into haha Once we got to the hotel we were so relieved. The man who was the receptionist was so so nice! He made us feel so much better about the experience. Not to mention the hotel was so beautiful! The walls had wood and beautiful tiles everywhere! The receptionist told us he would have someone come and talk to us about excursions the next day and then let us go to bed. The next day we woke up and got showers and got ready for the day. We had someone come up to our hotel room saying someone was there to help us plan an excursion. So we went downstairs and this man takes us to his office down the street. He was also really nice and helped us plan a trip to the Sahara desert!! We would travel there the next day and spend the night and then come back the next day. Our hotel was even nice enough to let us cancel the room we had for the next night free of charge! So since we planned that we decided to spend as much of the day exploring Marrakech as we could! We asked the man who planned our excursion if he could show us a restuarant that was nice and he took us to this amazing restuarant on the roof of this building. We had an amazing meal and had an awesome view! The meal was so cheap and we had a 3 course meal. We had soup, and then our meal and then dessert! We tried the Moroccan soup, I had meatballs and then we had a bunch of fruit, cookies and tea for dessert! At the end of our meal I accidently knocked over a cup and it broke and my wrist got cut, and the people of the restuarant immediately rushed over to help me and this nice lady helped me and gave me a band aide! We talked to the lady before because she was from the U.S. Just goes to show that if you are nice to people, they are nice to you in return! After we ate we walked around all of these shops and stopped at this spice shop. The man who worked there was named Said (Saheed) and he was extremely nice! He took us in and had us sit on this bench while he had us smell all these spices and let us try all these different things. There were so many people watching us outside the shop because of our faces and reactions to all the spices. It was really funny! He showed us this really cool crystal type thing that you put in your tea and it has a really really really strong scent that clears your nose and your throat. It only takes a very small pinch of this stuff to help you! He also showed us these things called magic lipstick and it looks like a piece of pottery but when you lick your finger and rub it, it is red and you can rub it on your lips for lipstick! We were so fascinated by it! We sat in his shop for a couple hours just talking with him and asking questions about the culture. He even made us this amazing tea. I am not much of a tea drinker but I love this tea! Said was telling us all about the culture and about his views on life and women. He was an amazingly nice person. We could not stop laughing and had so much fun talking to him! After we left his shop we went to another because we wanted to buy a tea set because it would represent the culture and it was awesome tea! The man in the shop for tea sets was incredibly funny as well! We were laughing so much and he would make fun of our voices because we would say thank you all girly haha After we left the shop we walked around the shops some more and then decided to take a carriage ride because we wanted to see more of the city of Marrakech. We only had one day so we wanted to see as much as we could! It was awesome! We saw the King's palace and mosques and some incredibly beautiful parts of the city! That night, Said had a friend bring over the scarfs they put on their heads and taught us all how to tie them! Then we went to the restuarant and as we were walking Said gave a blind man money and helped point him in the direction he needed to go, and he juggled a soccer ball around with this little kid. It showed us what an amazing guy he was. We were lucky to have met someone like him! Once we got to the restaurant we looked at the view, said bye to Said and then ordered our meal. Our waiter was also extrmemely nice and loved that I could speak a little french to him. He told us this story about how he used to be a boxer and won a match, but he saw his opponent and his family cry and realized that this was not a sport he was interested in doing. He said he was doing damage to something God created. He was another person who touched our hearts because of how sweet he was and his view on life were so interesting. We were so incredibly touched by all of the people we met in Marrakech and it was only the first day!

The next day we had to get up early because we had to take an 8 hour car ride to the Sahara! Our tour guide was named Calid and he was super funny and also had very interesting views on life. He told us that he was an "emotions doctor" and told us to love "profoundly". He also told us that life is never certain so eat dessert first! He was too funny! He let us stop at some awesome views and also took us to a really nice restuarant where we tried Kebabs. Then he took us to this shop where there were so many rugs! They were all hand made and were all unique. No two rugs were the same. They had many Moroccan symbols. All three of us ended up buying some because they meant a lot to us. Then we finally got to our camels to ride off to our camp site for the night! This is where we met our guide Yahya! We took an hour camel ride to our camp site through the Sahara desert and got to see the sun set! Our camp site was so cool! We had a tent which was huge and it was covered in rugs and stuff for warmth. We even had a little bed for each of us! Then once we got settled we sat outside with Yahya and had tea, cookies and nuts before dinner. We sat and got to know him and he was really really sweet! We even met some more Nomads from the Sahara. Then they took us into the "restaurant" tent where they made us a traditional Moroccan meal in a Tagine. Tagines are like the Moroccan crock pot. They are beautiful pieces of pottery used for cooking. Then after dinner we sat around the camp fire and the Nomads were singing and playing the drums! They were so awesome because they just made up the songs as they went and didnt use any written music! Then they passed the drum around and let us try it. We had so much fun! 

The next day we left by camel to meet our tour guide Calid so he could take us back. We had a long drive back to Marrakech. He took us to the train station because we had to take a train to Casa Blanca because we were flying out of there the next day. We were confused when to get off the train so we asked a man who was on the train and he was going there too so he told us he would grab us when he was getting off. This man had a broken arm and when he came to get us, he took all of our stuff down for us and even helped carry some off. We just met some of the nicest people! Then we found a taxi driver and went to our hotel. It was soooo nice! We got to take a shower and then right to bed because we had to be up early to leave for the second half of our trip!

Overall, our experience in Morocco was perfect! We were three girls trying to get around and everything fell into place to easily for us! We even met some amazing people along the way. I know people sometimes say that Africa can be scary, but if you give it a chance, you will have a life changing experience!

 

 

View from the top of our hotel outside our room!

 

Said making us tea in his shop!

 

The Market!

 

A View on our way to the Saharah :)

 

Camels in the Sahara!

 

Messing with the Camels at night!

 

LVC girls and their camels in the Sahara :)

 

This is just the first half of our trip!

 

~Kerri

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Delphi and Hydra!

Monday, 14 May 2012 23:13 by keb005

Sorry I have not posted in a long time! I was busy with studying for my midterms and then we left for spring break! I will try to summarize what I missed.

The week before spring break we spent a lot of time writing our papers and getting ready for our mid terms. That Thursday we took a field trip to delphi. Delphi was beautiful! It was definitely one of my favorite archaeology sites I have been to so far! It was built in this mountain and has a gorgeous view! We also got to take some holy water from a spring along the way to Delphi. We all filled out water bottles Laughing . At the archaeological site in Delphi there is the temple of Apollo. It was absolutely gorgeous in the mountain side. We also went into the museum to look at artifacts and remains which was really cool!

 

Climbing up to the site!

 

The Temple of Apollo!

 

 

An overview of the site!

 

 

Then for the weekend I had a friend who lives in Germany come and visit! She studied abroad in America for a year and we became really close so while I was in Europe she wanted to visit. She has never been to Greece before so I showed her around Athens for a day and then for Saturday and Sunday we went to the island of Hydra. Hydra is this really cool island where there are no cars at all so the only way to get around the island is by foot or by donkey. The island was gorgeous! We stayed in this cute hostel in the middle of town. Our first day there we explored the town by walking around and then we got donkey rides! It was so fun and I am glad we finally got to ride a donkey in Greece! Then we had dinner at this really cute restaurant near our hostel. Then we went out to a couple of the bars on the island. It wasnt crowded because it is not in season yet but we had fun! The next day we woke up and had lunch and then walked over to a beach that was a ten minute walk. It was absolutely gorgeous! There was a hotel and restaurant there and if we ate at the restuarant later we got to rent an umbrella and beach chairs for free! It was absolutely perfect and the water was beautiful and we had fun swimming around! For dinner we had an awesome meal. I wish we could have spent more time there! After dinner we had to go catch our ferry back home. 

 

The port of Hydra and the "cars" of Hyrda!

 

Me and my friend Nicki by the port!

 

A view from the other side of Hydra!

 

We had a very fun weekend at this little island! It still amazes me at how amazing it is to be able to travel to all these beautiful places!

 

Ta Leme (See you)!

 

~Kerri

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Crete!

Tuesday, 24 April 2012 18:15 by keb005

Kalispara (good afternoon)!

 

So when we got back from Santorini we only had one day back in Athens and then they next night we left for Crete!! Crete was our absolute favorite island so far! It was absolutely amazing. Crete had a little bit of everything, it had a city like athens, then it had the country with mountains and fields, and it also had beautiful beaches! Our hotel was in Herakleion, Crete which was a city and it felt like being in Athens. Athens has become our home away from home so anywhere that feels like Athens automatically makes us feel comfortable. There was awesome restuarants, places to shop and a night life. Everywhere we visted had more of a country or beach feel which was also nice to explore. It was different and we really enjoyed it!

Wednesday: On Wednesday we left at night to go to Crete. Our boat was supposed to leave at 9 at night but because it had stormed earlier and was extremely windy, we had to wait till 3 in the morning to leave! Luckily we had cabins for the night so we were able to sleep for a majority of our trip and we were able to sleep in which was nice! Our boat was beautiful! We joked around saying we felt like we were on the Titanic because it was so beautiful inside! So for the night we just explored the ship and then went to sleep.

 

 

Our boat to go to Crete!

 

The lobby of the boat! Isn't it beautiful!

 

Thursday: We arrived in Crete around 12 so we immediately had to go to our first archaeological site because we were behind schedule because of the delay in leaving. Our first site was the palace of Knossos. It was huge!  Not to mention it had a beautiful background of mountins and fields. Our professor, Michael, showed us around. It is amazing how much knowledge he has of the different sites. It was a lot of information to take in but it was very interesting and fun to see something so historical right under or feet! After our visit to this site we went to check into our hotel and had the rest of the day to ourselves. We went to this amazing restaurant for lunch! Our waitress asked if we wanted her to surprise us and try a bunch of things on the menu and we decided that would be fun! They brought out 11 dishes for us to try and share! It was absolutely delicious. We had snails, split peas with onions, lamb organs (we think haha), pork, beats, feta cheese, peppers, and a few other things! It was awesome to try some food Crete style! Then after we walked around the shops (and spent a good amount of money haha). Then we relaxed at the hotel for a while before dinner. For dinner we just got something quick because we werent too hungry after our big lunch! Then we got some gelato. I (Kerri) had some of the most amazing gelato I ever tasted! I got a chocolate strawberry one and it literally tasted like I was eating a chocolate covered strawberry. It was delicious! After dinner and gelato we went to check out the night life. We found this really cool bar that was having a salsa night! It was so awesome to see everyone dancing! We enjoyed that a lot!

 

Part of the Palace of Knossos

 

Another part to the palace of Knossos

 

Another part to the site. It is really hard to show all of it because it was huge, but these pictures can give you an idea!

 

The Harbor in Herakleion, Crete where we stayed! 

 

Friday: On Friday we went to visit 3 archaeological sites! It was very tiring but it was a good day! The first site was Gortyn. Gortyn was much smaller than Knossos but it was still beautiful. Then we went to the palace of Phaestos. This also was not as big as Knossos but it was still a rather large site. It was also very beautiful and interesting to see. Our last stop was in Agia Triada which was another smaller site like Gortyn. At this point we were all tired but we still enjoyed the visit! After our last site we went to the beach in Malata where we had 2.5 hours to eat lunch and go to the beach. Our professors took us to this beautiful restaurant right along the water. Here they also allowed us to try and share many different dishes! We had calamari, fired feta, fried sole fish, an egg plant dish, garlic bread, shrimp, and many other things too!! Th restaurant was so nice and gave us free alcohol and dessert! After, we went down to the beach to relax before heading back to our hotel. Once we were back at our hotel we relaxed and then all of the girls in the program went out to dinner together! We also had an amazing meal there and after got free dessert and alcohol! That is one of my favorite parts about the people of Greece, everytime you go out to eat or go to the farmers market they always give you something for free. They are the nicest people! Then after we all went out together to different bars in the area. We had a great time and met a few locals too!

 

 

 

Site of Gortyn!

 

 

the church on the site of Gortyn!

 

The Palace of Phaestos!

 

Site of Agia Triada!

 

The beach in Malata! There are little caves in the mountains!

 

The view from our restuarant at lunch!

 

The girls in our program!

 

Saturday: Saturday was our last day in Crete. We went to two museums. The first one was the Museum of the Heraklieon. This one was very nice and we got to see a lot of pieces which made the archaeological sites we saw become more real to us. The second one was the Museum of Chania. This also was a beautiful museum that showed us even different pieces that could help us connect what we learned at the sites to something real. It was great! The rest of the day was ours and we went and go lunch and shopped around for the rest of the day. Then we were walking along the pier by the beach and saw this stadium that was full and was really loud. So we decided to check it out and it was a swim meet! I (Kerri) wa sso excited since I swim for LVC. It was exciting for me to see a swim meet in another country! I even made it in time to see my favorite event, the 100 meter butterfly! After that we went down to see the beach and then we had to head back to our bus because we had to catch our boat back to Athens. We were all tired so once we got on the ship we ate dinner and then went to bed.

 

The Pier at Chania!

Sunday: We returned to Athens and had the day off!

Monday: We went as a class to the University of Athens! It was really cool to see a university in a different country! The university is really old so it looked a lot different than any of ours. We went to the department of Archaeology and they showed us around. The campus has their own museum and conservation lab for archaeology so everything they learn in the classroom, they can use for real in these facilities which is awesome! We really enjoyed our visit there!

 

Well, that is all for this week! 

 

~Kerri and Katherine

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Santorini!!

Tuesday, 17 April 2012 17:07 by keb005

So this week started off as just a normal week of classes. Monday-Thursday we just had classes throughout the day and didnt do much at night. Then Friday started our adventure to Santorini for Easter weekend! There was no better place to experience the Greek Easter for the first time! 

Friday: We met at 5 in the morning to walk to the metro and take the metro to the port. We had a 7:30 a.m ferry so we had to get there really early! The ferry ride was 8 hours but between doing homework and having everyone's compnay, the time went really fast! Once we got into Santorini someone from our hostel was waiting at the port to take us to the hostel. Our driver was named Yannis and he was really nice! Our hostel was so nice and the people there were very helpful and friendly. We stayed in a place called Katerina and John in Perissa. Our hostel was only 6 euros a night and they picked us up and dropped us off at the port for free! They also gave us discount coupons for restauarants and told us what fun thigns there were to do and where all the Easter events would take place. Once we settled in, we traveled to a town near by and ate at a restaurant for dinner and then decided to go to the Good Friday service for Easter. We went to this really nice church and it was extrememly crowded so we went in to see what it was like and then listend outside for the rest of the time. It was extremely windy and cold so we tried to find some place to block the wind. We ended up on the roof of the church huddeling in this hole together listening to the rest of the service. Then after, the preist lead a parade type thing with everyone from the church and they walked down the streets of the town and the whole city was lite up with candles! It was absolutely amazing and one of the most incredible things I have ever seen in my life. Seeing it from the roof of the church was awesome because we got a great view of the city! It was so beautiful! 

 

 

This is our Ferry in the port on the way up the island. It was not a very ncie day but the views were still gorgeous!

 

Our Hostel!

 

This is the church we went to for Easter. It was dark and the picture is a little blurry because of how windy it was!

 

A view of the town lite up from the roof!

 

The whole town lite up!!

 

Saturday: Saturday was still a little windy but it was a lot nicer so we decided to spend the day exploring the town of Firos and the town of Oia. Firos was very nice and had many shops and restuarants. We went to eat first and I tried Mousikas for the first time! Mousikas is potatoes, eggplant, minced meat and cheese. It was delicious! Then we looked around some shops and we found this fish spa! It was called Kissing Fish and you stick your feet in water full of fish and they suck the dead skin off your feet! We tried it and it was so fun! It was a weird feeling but it was really fun! Then we traveled to Oia! Oia is a gorgeous town and when you think of Santorini and the post cards of Santorini, this is the town that is pictured. It was absolutely gorgeous. We walked around town to all these beautiful photo spots and also shopped a little around here too. Then we went back to Firos and all had a dinner together. We went to a restuarant overlooking the Volcano and the sunset! It was gorgeous! We also got a delcious seafood meal! The day before Easter they typically stay away from meat so we had seafood this night! Then we all just hung out and waited for it to be midnight to see the Easter service! It was so cool! Again it was extrememly crowded so we were listening outside. Then when it was midnight all these fire works and bomb noises started going off. It was one of the craziest things I have ever seen. Then everyone processes out of the church with a lite lambata (a decorated candle). It was gorgeous! Definitely an unforgetable experience!

 

Katie and Kerri at the Fish Spa!

 

LVC Girls in Oia!

 

 

Firos!

 

The LVC girls in Oia!

 

The church for Easter!

 

Sunday: Today was a our last full day so we wanted to explore as much as we could. We went to a bunch of different beaches that were beautiful and even though it was freezing we wanted to see them and take pictures. We also found this cute restuarant to eat for lunch. They had lamb on a spit for Easter. So we got a kilo of Lamb, greek salad and potatoes for about 7 euros each! It was delicious! Then we went back to Firos and met up with everyone and walked around the town. Then we ate at a restaurant for dinner and had the traditional Easter dinner. We had lamb, and lamb organ soup and greek salad! It was absolutely delicious! I was happy we got to experience the full Easter experience this weekend! 

 

Black Sand Beach in Perissa!

 

Red Beach!

 

Lamb on a Spit!

 

Another beach! I forget the name but it was beautiful!

 

Monday: Today was our last day! It was finally really warm so we went to the beach in Perissa and relaxed all day until we had to catch our Ferry. It was a great end to an awesome weekend!

 

We cannot believe we have exactly 2 months left! Time is flying by! We will be in Crete this week! We will post next week!

 

~Kerri and Katie

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