We are sitting in Athens' (Marco Paulo) airport, having passed through numerous ticketing and security hoops. It's amazing how scary a toenail cutter can look to an X-ray. But we are now settled at a table, with straight back chairs, the traveler’s anxiousness is waning, and the eyes are getting heavy anticipating the 17 hours of flying that lie ahead.
It has been an amazing journey packed with sights, senses, and sounds. Colors of brown, yellow, and green in Italy, and deep blues, bright whites, and volcanic reds splashed by a sea of blue and green in Greece. Although we had many legs to our journey, it flowed perfectly, probably due in part to Duke’s meticulous planning, but also due, I think, to unseen forces guiding our journey. Our trip was so full of experience and emotion that words on paper don’t do justice to the journey. However, I can share our last day in Athens.
We stayed at the beautiful Royal Olympic Hotel
which is within walking distance of many of the amazing Ancient Greek sites and artifacts
The view from our table at the hotel rooftop restaurant was breathtaking!
The Parthenon on the Acropolis
and the Temple of Zeus
On our last day, we visited several museums, and traced the footsteps of Poseidon, who is part of The Atlantis Chronicles Trilogy. As we enjoyed the streets of Athens leading to the National Archeological Museum, I actually tripped over the only street plate that we ever saw…
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And we sighted the only dolphin to grace the front bumper of a city bus
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We found a commanding bronze of Poseidon in the National Archaeological Museum
I think Duke bears a striking resemblance…
What do you think??
Poseidon’s Temple was the last and final tour, the pièce de résistance, before departing Europe. However, prior to leaving the U.S., I kept telling Duke that I didn’t expect to “feel” anything in either Santorini or visiting Poseidon’s Temple. He just kept reiterating, “I think you will.” I have to say that the “coincidences” that heightened our experiences on Santorini were astounding. And when we visited the old port, I was gripped by an overwhelming feeling of joy and “coming home.” However, I wasn’t prepared for what happened at Poseidon’s Temple.
We joined a bus tour that took us 50 miles south of Athens to the very southern point of the Grecian peninsula. The tour was quiet and Duke rested from his driving duties. The scenery flashed by until…perched, like a lonely sentinel, on a rocky knoll overlooking the vast Aegean, stood the Temple of Poseidon. It was a sight of beauty and awe
Truly it was the culmination of a story that I had begun long ago. It was Duke’s hope that the spectacular surroundings of Santorini and Athens would help bring to life the places I had envisioned.
Although small if measured by the standards of Zeus’s Temple …Posiedon’s Temple lacked nothing in majesty
In a lonely, windswept place, miles outside of Athens, where I expected to feel nothing, I was astounded by a sudden and unstoppable rush of tears. The moment the bus pulled into the parking lot, I was consumed by such a deep sense of grief that I could hardly stand it…I certainly couldn’t contain it.
Duke took my arm as my breath came in deep sobs and tears streamed down my face. We ascended the stone steps leading to the temple, but I could barely see. I had no idea where these feelings came from or why they had now surfaced…but the feelings that pulsed through me as surely as my heartbeat were of abject abandonment and loss. I was bereft.
As I walked slowly around the temple, I approached one of the large stones surrounding the temple and I found that this singular stone was the only one that held an inscription and the imprint of a shell.
I reverently touched the shell imprint
It was then that the thought came to me that here stood the last temple, the last testament to Poseidon, god of the lands and oceans. Was it created from contrition by Atlantean survivors? Were the creators trying to appease a god they felt had abandoned them for all time? It was a lonely temple, it certainly had been and still is a beautiful temple…but who can say why it was this place that was chosen?
Back on the walkway, nestled in among the larger stones,
a very small cream colored stone called to me
I gently picked up the beautiful remembrance of Poseidon’s Temple and brought it home. It rests in a place of honor on top of the stones I collected at Kamari beach in Santorini…
As we headed back to our hotel, the colors of the Aegean deepened to Sapphire blue
And we dined outside as our last night in Greece brought with it the beauty of a full moon...
We were taught that if you use the proper term, efcharisto, "ef" means with joy/happiness I thank you...
And so it is with joy and happiness that I wrap up this log as Duke and I wrapped up the trip of a lifetime. I hope that you enjoyed reading about our travels as much as Duke and I enjoyed sharing it with you?
Grazie mille, efcharisto...thank-you...
May you always find the joy and love in life and spread that love and joy with those you touch.
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