Thursday, April 2, 2009

On strike

Talk about some bad luck: today we had our fieldtrip day in the seminar, and of course the Greek decide to go in a general strike exactly then. Because the people looking after ancient sites and monuments are on the government payroll, the strike meant that they would be closed. Luckily in our first target, the Temple of Artemis in Brauron, the guard apparently had not heard about the strike yet and we got inside, and there is open access to the theatre in Thorikos. But there was a new fence around the silver mining remains in Laurion, and the Temple of Poseidon was closed - as well as the smaller remains of a temple of Athene nearby. There were quite a few disappointed tourists milling around at the last site.

However, despite the weather forecast which warned of a possibility of rain, the day turned out gorgeous, warm and sunny. And there were flowers of every colour everywhere. We had lunch in a taverna in Laurion and I boldly used what little Greek I can speak. Maybe we got special service due to that, since we had our food before other people from our party who had arrived earlier, and also got our bill with less problems. It always pays to learn the magic words in any language.

Tomorrow will be the last day of the seminar. This week has really flown by, and it has been both academically stimulating and socially enjoyable experience. I hope I shall meet some of the people here again in the future!

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