This year's big family vacation was a 2-week expedition to Ireland, Italy, and Greece......in that order. I say expedition because traveling with three kids for that period of time feels like an epic journey. Greece has always brought a variety of images to mind.....exotic looking people with names I can't pronounce, rich foods, and a staggering amount of history all around. To my delight, the reality was much better than my imagined adventure in Greece despite my cell phone being stolen by a cabbie.
So I always try to check out local cemeteries in every country we visit. There is so much to learn in cemetery. I didn't get a chance to go to a Greek cemetery on this trip but I plan to check one out on our next one (maybe next summer?). The Greeks were amazingly friendly and very helpful. Everyone we encountered spoke English and I was surprised by the amount of '80s American music that we heard in businesses we patronized.
Theatre of Dionysus
We saved ourselves some money by using Uber for our trips into Athens, and Welcome Pickups exceeded our expectations for our airport transfers. As you can see from my pics, we enjoyed tours of the Acropolis and the Theatre of Dionysis.
I have always been fascinated by cemeteries and burial practices in other countries. I don't know what it is about them but it is such an intimate part of their society and I feel like it helps me understand and connect with their culture. In ancient Greece, at the time of the funeral, offerings were made by relatives and lovers. the house and household items would be thoroughly cleaned with sea water and hyssop (an herb), and then a large feast was held. Failure to perform the necessary and proper funeral rights was seen as an insult, and it was believed that the deceased would then not be able to travel to the afterlife and therefore be forever stuck in purgatory.
My family and I stayed in Alimos, a lovely coastal town not far from Athens. We rented a beautiful 3-bedroom, 2.5 bath ocean view condo on Airbnb for an amazing price. Way cheaper than renting two hotel rooms for us and our three adult kids, plus the amenities were way better. It had several balconies accessible from all of the bedrooms and living areas that gave a 180 degree view of the ocean. If you haven't tried Airbnb yet but are interested, you can use my link to get a $40 credit (www.airbnb.com/c/aporterfield1)
I think our next trip to Greece will be to the island of Aegina.The owner of the condo we rented has a house on the island and it even has a private beach. Next summer can't some soon enough!!!
Til next time......don't forget to make today count!