Bogan Becs, Tooheys Gold, Miss Outrageous and Frau Sleeth 3195 Greek Islands Extravaganza!

October 22, 2010 at 10:29 pm (Travel)

Party Time!

After meeting Alisia and Amy at the airport we headed straight out to the port to make our way to our first island Mykonos, famous for its diverse and intense nightlife, sandy beaches and a cosmopolitan character.  After the third night we were joined by the last member of our Greek Island troop… Miss Rebecca Haining.

Mykonos Town definitely lived up to the cosompolitan character!   It’s an amazing maze of narrow cobbled streets and beautiful white buildings…  Cute shops crammed in against small churches, sparodic laneways that lead to nowhere in partiuclar and a waterfront view that is to die for!

Gorgeous streets of Mykonos

We spent hours just wandering and it seriosuly is a magical place.  Apparently the residents have to paint their houses white but are allowed to paint the doors and window frames which ever colour they like.  It’s defintiely one way to keep your town picture postcard perfect!

We spent most of our time lazing by the pool or tackling the windy streets of the town shopping but we did manage to go on a day trip to the island of Delos.  This is where Apollo and Artemis are said to have been born and was a very important site in ancient Greece .  In fact, the Cyclades fulfil their collective name of Kyklos (meaning circle) by encircling this sacred island.  The settlement has been abandoned since around the 3rd century AD but the ruins are quite impressive.  I was particularly impressed with the mosaic floors that could still be seen totally intact in some of the houses.

Stunning!

We sadly bid farewell to Mykonos and made our way to Santorini.  This island is well known for the beautiful picture postcards.  Essentially, Santorini is what you think of when you picture the Greek islands and the island definitely lived up to this claim to fame.  Fira is perched on top of a magnificent cliffface and offers some of the best ocean views I have ever had the privlidge of witnessing.  Simply breathtaking.

Once again we made a day trip but this time to the National Geographic Park of Nea Kameni.  The island group of Santorini was actully formed as a result of major volcanic erruption from over 3, 600 years ago.  The crater was pretty impressive, as was the smoke that you could see.  As part of the trip we also had the opportunity to swim in a natural hot springs formed in an oceanic bay.  While not as warm as we were hoping, it was still nice to go for a dip in the Aegean Sea and the differ in water temperature was definitely noticable.

Sunset in Oia

We also ventured out to Oia for a world famous sunset.  Although very pretty I was highly disappointed.  I have seen much better ones at Parkdale Beach.  Maybe there is a niche there that we should be honing into??  So looking forward to some of those when I am home.  🙂

 

Sadly after Santorini Bec left us as she was flying home earlier.  One person down but determined to still have fun, Lis, Amy and I headed to our last island Naxos, which is the most highly populated and fertile island of the area.  Here we enjoyed walking along the picturesque harbour, eating Mexican (why not when in Greece?) and exploring the old market part of town.  The highlight though was an unplanned visit to the ruins of the Temple of Apollo.  All that is left of the temple is a photoframe like structure stuck out on a small island inslet.  It was windy as, but the views were gorgeous… or possibly outrageous as Lis would put it.

Last up was a day in Athens.  I didn’t really realise that the Acropolis is smack bam in the middle of the city.  No guess as to why.  From the top you can see as far as the ocean, and Athens is a large city.  The structure is highly impressive, even with the hoards of tourists.

Random facts:

1.  It took nine years to build the structure.

2.  Six years later the decoration was complete.  (Now how is that for effeciency!)

3.  It’s made up of 16, 000 separate pieces of marble that are joined perfectly together.

4.  In it’s lifetime it has served as a worship place not only during Greek antiquity but also for Christianity, the Latin faith and even as a Mosque.

We wandered through the streets and also admired the Temple of Zeus and the Arch of Andrianos among other random ruins.  It’s quite interesting how they have been incorporated into the city.  Under the new Acropolis Museum (which I thoroughly enjoyed) they have excavated the remains of an old Greek settlement.  You can see these through glass panels in the floor of the museum and under the structure as you are walking in.  Actually… at the moment they are still carrying out excavation near the entrance and you can see them working!

One thing I do have to mention is how nice it was that at the museum there was a no photo policy that was actually being adhered to.  I did not see one person using their camera once.  This is quite a feat for a massive tourist attraction in Europe.  It might have something to do with the fact that certain tourists were nowhere to be seen… if you know what I mean  😉

So this ends an AMAZING autumn holiday in Greece with some wonderful fun girls.  It has been a wonderful last hurrah for Lis and I am going to miss having her around in Europe.  😦  She’s been a great support through out this first year.  Luv you babe.

Meanwhile still lots for me to be looking forward to… a Bundesleague game tomorrow, a bath robe drinking adventure and of course, most excitingly… a holiday home and the wedding of the year.  Life is good.

xoxo

P.s  More photos?  Check out http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=291960&id=509745588&l=341a0c45ff

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Back in Darmstadt

October 2, 2010 at 7:37 am (Germany)

The autumn holidays are fast approaching and I have decided it is time for an update.  🙂  As a two week Greek Island holiday with some really close girlfriends is on the cards this also seemed like a good idea.  God knows what kind of mischief we are going to get up to!

Watching the Kookaburras

Just before school started I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to see the Kookaburras (Australian men’s hockey team) play in the Champions Trophy in Mönchengladbach.  Some of my hockey friends were playing in a seniors tournament and were going to the game afterwards so I tagged along.  I camped in a tent next to the hockey field and got to have a laugh watching my coach play.  🙂   Watching Australia was particularly exciting because I got to see an old friend Chris Ciriello in the Green and Gold.  Disappointingly I didn’t get a chance to have a chat with him, but it was still amazing to see somebody I know playing for my country.

Speaking of hockey… our season is well and truly under way.  So far we’ve had some tough matches and haven’t managed to come away with a point.  😦  We’re working on it though and the last game we played was by far the best I have been involved in since joining the club.  Of course it is always difficult when you are promoted, but we are working hard.

Hockey balls are my friends!

I did manage to cop a lovely ball to the chin though.  I was quite a sight and you can still feel a blood bubble where the ball hit.  (Can’t see it though, so it’s all ok)

This weekend we are off to Nürnberg and Munich to play.  A four hour drive to play hockey???  Crazy.  Meanwhile… nearly ever traveller I know is heading to Munich at the moment for Oktoberfest… and me?  For hockey.   Go figure!

So I am back into the swing of things with school and not too much to report there.  It’s been interesting seeing how the start of the year here works and I am working in all three different streams of schooling here which is both really interesting and challenging.  I took part in the annual school fun run and managed to run around the school ten times in one hour.  They get all the kids at the school to run/walk/sit at the SAME time.  I am sure you can imagine the chaos.  At the moment I have a pile of marking a mile high and am relieved that I have three teaching three weeks before me.

One cool thing they have here is a teacher’s excursion.  We went to the Messel Fossil Pit, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  Unfortunately I didn’t find the tour particularly interesting but I would be interested in going back to have a look at the new visitor centre.  (It was closed after our tour so we couldn’t have a look)  Afterwards we had a lovely meal at a pub and then had a couple of drinks in Darmstadt.  Was a lovely day.

Of course I have been out and about… a fluorescent party with Agatha where we wore bibs from hockey, a hockey mate’s 18th birthday, various Kerbs (Mini German festivals), gatecrashing a going away party with Carry, wine festivals and even an onion festival.

Too much wine with Agathe and Caro

I also headed down to my old exchange hunting ground for the going away party for Damaris’ parents.  Uwe has got a position working in Washington for the next five years.  They are both like parents to me so it was good to have a chance to say good bye and see the other children in the Becker’s gang.  It did involve eight hours of train travelling though.  😦

So I have been busy and am definitely looking forward to some travelling again.  Firstly a week in Marburg on camp again and then two weeks enjoying the sunshine in the Greek Islands.

It’s going to be simply amazing!  Have some other exciting news too… but that is just going to have to wait until another time.  😉

xoxo

P.s  More photos?  Check out http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=286616&id=509745588&l=b4c8029d4d

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