one last day in the accent || departures and the longest day

26 September 2005

national museum

we got up early this morning and found the rental agency with surprisingly little trouble. it was so close in fact that we decided to walk back to the museum. we were quite glad we hadn’t done all the driving last night to return it to the airport. when we arrived at the museum we discovered that it opens at 13:00 on mondays, so we felt a little cheated for having gotten up early. back to the hotel for us then, we took this opportunity to again check the internet and watch some CNN. i also went by a computer store and got a charger for my ipod and phone so i’d be sure to have my electronic devices fully charged for the flight back.

after a bit of dawdling and some snacks, we returned to the national museum to pace through it’s many halls. we spent four hours going through it and finally seeing in one place all the greatest treasures and stories of the sites we’d been visiting over the past two weeks. the effect was a bit overwhelming, and it was hard to stay focused. i gave the immense pottery collection a particularly cursory overview. i can’t really say i am all about pots. we had seen reproductions of several of the finest friezes and statues elsewhere, but there were a number of unique pieces that were awe-inspiring, particularly in the statuary and roman sections.

after four hours of walking around the museum i was throughly exhausted, and welcomed a brief nap when we returned to the hotel. we went out again and on the athens guide’s recommendation found a delicious taverna only a few blocks away. we ordered our favorites and sat back and enjoyed ourselves. at the end of the meal katharine wanted ouzo, so of course we had to order some.

the 20cl bottle prominently displayed “46%”, but you could tell it was strong from the alcohol odor itself. in fact, the only thing stronger than the alcohol odor is that of black licorice, as ouzo is flavored with anise. of course katharine and martin did no research as to what ouzo was like, and as they hate black licorice it was soon clear who the task of consuming the bottle was going to be incumbent upon. i poured them glasses anyway, dropped in the ice cubes and watched as the liquid turned a milky white. then, drink! the taste is as you’d expect a combination of cold vodka and black licorice, not altogether unpleasant from my point of view. the strength though was definitely noticeable, and i refrained from finishing the bottle and instead brought the remainder home with me.

anyone interested in a taste of greece?