Athanasios is an editor/translator working on a book for a Korean War Vet. He is helping to write this mans’ memoir. To my understanding not many exist and that this has been quite the process. We ended up meeting around nine and walked to his place to see the view of Athens at night and to get up in the morning to hike up the top of Mount Lycabettus to watch the sunrise……
Yes I know this guy was a stranger and yes I trusted him and went to his apartment no questions asked. Yes I spent the night, he gave up his bed and slept on the couch. He did stick his tongue down my throat when he kissed me goodnight, but that was all. He was a gentleman and tried nothing else. He did hug me while I was still in bed in the morning, but that was all. He was a good boy!….. all that being said. The evening was quite nice. His apartment was on the 6th floor, with a balcony overlooking the city. He served me olives, cheese, walnuts all from his family’s farm. Also tuna and bread toasts. We drank Raki that he had and some he made. He was playing all types of music throughout the evening.
5:30am coffee and cookies, time to go. Sun will soon be rising and we want to catch it. I had no idea the walk or the climb I was in for, but man was it worth it. I got some great shots of the Acropolis, exercise and the view was stunning. It was really neat to see the Acropolis without any tourists. Such a calm and peacefulness about it, kind of like getting its rest and regaining its energy before the masses arrive once again.
The hike down the hill was much easier than going up. We wandered through some cool neighborhoods and took me by the Athens National Library and The First National Academy. Beautiful buildings and statues surrounding. The detail is just stunning.
Eventually dropped me by my hostel, where I proceeded to go find a fresh juice and take a nap. I walked around Athens a bit, bought a few things for my trip like an extra sim card for my camera. That was a lucky find, as the card my camera uses is no longer being made. Athanasios was coming back to get me later so I tried to get my things together for my flight in the morning. I even did laundry, which took me forever because I couldn’t read the Greek on the washing machine. Two hours to wash 1 small batch of whites. I then hung all my clothes in my room to dry because there was no dryer. At some point I attempted to take a nap, only 4 hours sleep the night before. Even with half a sleeping pill I think I slept 1 hour. Lots of tossing and turning, thoughts running like a hamster through my mind. Excited too, being in a new place, knowing I need to rest a bit yet wanting to explore as much as I can before I leave for Santorini.
5pm, Athanasios and I head for the New Cultural Center, it is a place that was built for the Olympics and now will be a library and cultural center for the locals and otherwise. Place is first class and gorgeous. We were picked up in the city by a bus free of charge and driven to the center and well as driven back. There was an outdoor concert featuring a symphony and singers honoring West Side Story. In another area on a big screen there was an American Kids Movie in Greek… Legos? Really really good energy. I love how the families were out and about for the evening. You could feel the love.
I was exhausted and had an early morning, so we left around 8:30 or so. He walked me back to my hostel and took me upstairs. I gave him a bottle of wine and shampoo to take for me. He was going to let me stay at his place my last night in Athens. As I went to say good night, he asked for a proper kiss and sat me on my bed. I just was not feeling it and I did not like the way he kissed me. I stopped him and sent him on his way. I think it was 11pm before I finally got to sleep. Ready for Santorini….