Sunday, 21 May
Today was our last day in Greece, Dolora and I had a 9:20 pm flight to Lisbon. We slept in a little and went down to breakfast. We packed our bags and left them at the hotel where we were to be picked up at 6:15 pm for the ride to the airport.
Dolora and I were off to see the eleven o’clock changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unkown Soldier passing some street art on the way. On Sundays the eleven o’clock changing of the guard is supposed to include a band. Since we had seen the changing of the guard earlier, I stayed back from the mob while Dolora watched from close up. Since our earlier viewing of the changing, uniforms have changed from winter to summer. When it was over, neither of us had heard the band??
Today is election day in Greece and that may have altered the guard’s plan. Greek schedules are normally a bit unpredictable and several natives told us they did not know what to expect on election day. Voting is a bit different than in the US. It is only one day. You have to vote where you are registered and many of the people who live in Athens are still registered in their home towns. Many people left Athens for the weekend to go home to vote. I think I read they have over thirty parties, only about six that are effective. There is a run off election if someone does not get 50% of the vote. The Greeks are expecting another election on July second.
Near the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier was the Museum of the Ancient Greek Technology. Our guide highly recommended a visit here. This museum has many hands on exhibits. The temporary exhibit is Greek music. Along with replicas of the instruments, you could hear the sounds of many of the instruments. There were even a few instruments where you could pluck the strings. A replica of a third century BC robot poured wine and water into a cup. An opening door set off an alarm that sounded like chirping birds. Some of Leonardo Da Vinci’s sketches seemed like refinements of Greek inventions. A replica “vending machine” would dispense holy water if you dropped in a coin! Not sure Dolora enjoyed the museum as much as I did.
We headed back towards the hotel for a late lunch/early dinner at a place we visited early in the tour. Stuffed peppers, stuffed grape leaves, roasted lamb and roasted chicken to hold us over until the flight. What better way to leave Greece than with gelato? On the way for gelato there is a photo of gas prices but it is in euros per liter, converts to about $7.00 per gallon. The gelato shop also has a bakery with some incredibly temping creations but we had already eaten enough so just gelato.
Back to the hotel to pick up our bags. Our taxi driver was a little early which was fine. He whisked us off to the airport and guess what I found, my long searched for dark chocolate espresso bar. The shop only had one mixed in with other flavors.
Our flight was on Aegean Air with a sad in flight meal after two weeks of delicious meals. Dolora and I were not seated together but on the upside, a couple wanted to sit together and swapped seats with me giving me extra legroom. Even though our flight left a few minutes late, we arrived a couple minutes early.