Sunday, March 9, 2014

Side trip to Greece

 Near the beginning of my journey in Israel, I spent some time in Greece. Things are coming full circle because Emet and I just got back to Israel after a short vacation in Greece last week. 
It was nothing like the last time I was September 2012, it was sunny and gorgeous and exciting. This time, it was rainy, cold, miserable, and not really a vacation. Emet and I made the best of it, though we wished we had gone to Eilat instead for the week, where it would have been sunny and warm. 

We started in Thessaloniki, where we had hoped to find the Jewish community. It seemed by reviews online that there was a lot to do and see there, but we actually did it all in one day. On Shabbat, we tried to find services, but failed to do so. We found the synagogue but it was locked.

There was another synagogue and we walked up and down the street trying to find it, but also failed at that. So we went to the museums because it was raining. On Sunday, we found the Jewish museum, which was just depressing. Essentially, the Jewish community in Thessaloniki used to be quite large, but the Nazis shipped a majority of them out to camps and they never returned. The community now is difficult to find, if there really is one. We weren't sure if they even had a minyan for services on Shabbat. 

On Sunday afternoon, we traveled to Athens, where it was clear skies for the night and then pouring rain for the next two days. We stayed in the hostel or went to a coffee shop to ride out the rain.

On our last two days, it was finally sunny, and we saw all the ruins you can see on the ticket for the Acroplis. 

We walked a lot that day, and saw a lot, even though it wasn't very interesting. All the ruins started to look the same after a while.
On our last day, we walked up Mount Lycabettus, which showed a nice view of the city. We were ready to come home, though, and made our way to the airport.

We learned that we travel well together and tend to balance each other out. When I was upset by the disappointment of the trip, Emet supported me, and when she was reaching her point of disappointment, I supported her. Overall, it was not really a vacation, but it was great for us to connect in a new place and spend some time together. Our last week at school had really been too busy for us to spend qualitative ime together.

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