12 July 2010

The Arrival- Greece

I have finally arrived in Greece, despite having my original British Airways flight to London canceled in LA because it never left London due to electrical problems and issues with the flight crew working overtime. Luckily they were able to book us on a new flight that was rescheduled from the day before because that plane never left LA due to some reason that I don't really want to know about. However, this rescheduled flight threw a wrench in the on-time workings of BA as there were then TWO flight 268s, both leaving from LAX to Heathrow, an hour apart from each other, and the only difference between the two tickets was the date in the bottom corner; our ticket saying July 9th (although it was in fact the 10th) and the other flight's ticket saying July 10th. It was very confusing all around.

The flights ended up being pretty easy, with the exception of our entertainment system not being loaded until 4.5 hours into the flight, and even then it wasn't the usual menu style that they've had in the past, but rather the kind were there were only a few movies, one on each channel, and you couldn't stop and restart your movie. That ended up being fine, though, since I somehow managed to sleep for five hours of the flight and was awoken by the stewardess slamming down my box of Kosher breakfast on Sam's food tray. I did however get to watch Clash of the Titans. Still good even on a 3x5 inch screen.

Funny thing that I learned during the travel adventure: Olympic Airlines is like the Southwest of Europe. Even though you had assigned seats, they were super chill the entire time, to the point of there being groups of children just hanging out in the aisle way of the airplane. They also were constantly giving us drinks, including booze, and passed out candy before the plane took off. That and the meal that they served was legit good. I'm not entirely sure whether I thought it was tasty because it was the best of the three airplane meals that i had eaten in a row, or because I was really really hungry at the time, or because it was actually good. No matter, it made me a happy camper, unaffected by Xanax as I never had to take it during the entire flight.

We finally got into Athens at 10:45pm, but were unable to be picked up from the airport until 11:45 due to some major bumper to bumper traffic between the Corinth toll road and another toll road. While Sam and I were waiting to be picked up outside, we befriended a kitten that was sitting in the waiting area next to the parking lot. We would meow at it and it would periodically meow back at us. Sam made a concerted effort to pet it, but it would give us the warning meow whenever we tried. Sooner or later we got picked up, and made it back to Mikines by 1am, after which we both passed out.

Work started (THANK GOD) for us at 10 this morning, allowing us some extra time to sleep in because we got in so late. Usually it will start at 8am and will go until 3pm. We were provided with some official looking laminated name cards issued by the government for archaeology students, although they are only meant for grad students so we have to pretend. Today we were given the job of counting and cleaning bags of animal bones that were dug up with corresponding bags of pottery sherds that were out on the tables being sorted and put back together. The bones were surprisingly entertaining, and cleaning them with water and a soft toothbrush made my hands really pruney in strange patterns (ie some parts of my fingers would be pruney, and other parts not). We will probably be doing something similar tomorrow, although most of our time will most likely be spent working with the pots. I seriously doubt that we're going to be able to dig on site, which is fine by me as the museum room were we work is slightly air-conditioned.

After work we got to Dr. Shelton's inlaw's house next door to our hostel and they made us lunch, which today was homemade french fries, tsatsiki, meatloaf, and Greek salad. This will be standard fare for lunch, which I am excited about since I will a) not have to pay for lunch, and b) be fed real food. It's so nice to be able to eat homemade food while I'm here since last year it definitely got old eating the same food at the same restaurants over and over again. Then Sam and I were each allotted 100euros spending money to last us as long as possible, which we speculate will probably be about 10 or 11 days, depending on if we eat dinner since we are fed a lot at lunch. Then after lunch we took a nap and are now planning on studying for Greek/Turkish/Latin/whatever after that since it is way too hot during the afternoon to do much outside. We'll see how well that lasts.

I'll try to start posting pictures of the town as soon as I start taking pictures to give people an idea of its tiny-ness. It's actually quite adorable.

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