ATHENS – ACROPOLIS AT DUSK, FLYING SHISHKEBAB AND TAMLA MOTOWN, 1976

TUESDAY 12TH OCTOBER, 1976

” Late morning – 8.0!  Wrote pcs and lazed around in sun during morning.  Snooped round other Swagman bus and played Tamla Motown – they’ve much better selection than us.  Few of us left, had omelette and beans for lunch.

Lift in with Magic Bus.  Tried to get Nanette [girl we gave lift to from Methoni] away on the bus to London, but got there too late.  Chased round square to contact Geoff and get her luggage back to camp.  By late afternoon finally started sightseeing!

Made way up narrow lanes to Acropolis, kept losing everybody.  While at Acropolis most tourists were leaving and sun going down between the pillars of the Parthenon, hazy view out to sea.  View of Temple of Zeus and other hill (Athens not an attractive city – much of it dug up and half built, very dirty).  Guards and band appeared and played while flag lowered.  Men blew whistles frantically when anyone tried to go inside Parthenon.  One attendant gave us a pollo; another called Jan Athena, me Aphrodite and Rob Zeus!  All seem very friendly.

We wandered down small streets, little leather shops etc, till came to restaurant with tables in street, waiter just about dragged us off street and sat us in front of menu.  Presumed this was where we were to meet Fred.  Had Demestica while waited then ordered meal.  Had disappointing shishkebab and greasy cheese salad – flung half on floor trying to get off skewer – dogs ate it!  Loads of cats too.  Nanette came across us – had been lost in area.  Eventually Fred and other Swagman driver Steve found us.

At 9.0 we went up to see Son et Lumiere looking across at Acropolis.  Thought it over dramatic, some of it quite hilarious. “Thwack, wack, build and build” and mad dash of running feet, like something out of the Goons! Afterwards several of us went for a coffee down from Acropolis in big empty restaurant with carpets and bags on the wall.  Got lift home with other Swagman bus.”

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THERMOPYLAE TO ATHENS – HOT SPRINGS, COLD SHOWERS, HOMESICK, 1976

Aussie Jan trying to climb out of hot spring at Thermopylae

MONDAY 11TH OCTOBER, 1976

” 1st stop, small town, had coffee.  2nd stop was the hot sulphur spring at Thermopylae – bathed feed in the water – fantastic, just like a hot bath (really slimy on bottom).  What a boast!

Then stopped to take picture of Spartan memorial, quite impressive.

Very dry, hazy countryside.  Felt bored and a bit low.  Got to Athens in the afternoon, camped and had fantastic cold shower.  Felt human again.  Met up with other Swagman bus – talked to nice Aussie bloke.
Had drink at bar (Chris, Nikki, Adrian, Chris, Rob, Sue, Pam, Diane) Felt really depressed.  Went and talked to Di and Frances, doing washing, they felt bit homesick too.  Pam pissed off too.”

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