A Slippery Quack

Greece - Athens, Rhodes

With Amy and Glenn

May/June 1999

"Grease is the word, is the word, that you heard..." belted out NOT happily.

Unfortunately, the word that NOT heard was mis-heard. Amy invited him along with her and Glenn on their honeymoon, not to the theater but to the country of Greece. 

He began to realize that when he found himself stuffed into a suitcase and packed in the hold of a 747.

NOT heaved himself out of the suitcase when he arrived and breathed a sigh of relief. Unfortunately it was cut short by a hack of the smog that he encountered in Athens. 

Now Not found that Athens is named after this Athena woman. He didn't see her but he found this old temple to her.  "She must be something if they build a big building for her," he mused.

Way up on the hill there was a large building he was told was the Acropolis. 

"What horrible landscaping," sniffed NOT, "they can't even pick up the stones left around."

He wasn't that far off though in his original impression, or so he thought when Amy mentioned that they were going to the theater. "Wow, Grease in Greece!" thought NOT. "What a great opportunity"

But when he got there, there was no curtain. No ushers. No plus seats. And no Grease. Only rows and rows of hard stone seats in an ancient theater looking like the background for one of those John Tesh concerts. 

NOT began to sniff. "What a dump. This place is falling apart. First the theater and then the stadium is nothing but shambles. They need to go look at the Astrodome or something and do it properly." 

"And DON'T get me started on the toilet problems!" he squawked. "I had to hold it for a week!"

NOT was glad to get moving on. They were on the road to Rhodes. If he studied up on the city, then maybe NOT could become a Rhodes Scholar. 

Not that it is going to get him anywhere near Oxford.

The city used to be ruled by the Knights Hospitaler  and was an important commerce center in the Aegean Sea. 

He found the gates in Rhodes to be big and impressive. Much more impressive than the ones he saw in Washington State back home.

Of course when you were home of one of the Seven Wonders of the ancient world - the Colossus of Rhodes, you need big buildings. Unfortunately, NOT saw lots of open spaces, but no colossus. Amy didn't have the heart to tell him that it came down centuries ago. 

Now NOT wanted to know about his future, so he found himself heading off to Delphi, hoping to get word from the oracle. He even sat in the judges chair but the oracle did not deign to help him understand his place in the world, or where he was going.

Dionysus was the son of Zeus and Persephone. One legend maintained that Dionysus died at the hands of the Titans, who tore him apart, roasted the pieces, and began to eat them. At that point Zeus intervened, saved some of the pieces, and had Apollo bury them at Delphi. 

There, it was believed, Dionysus arose from the dead each year and reigned during the three winter months, while Apollo was away. Two celebrations were regularly held in Athens in his honor: the Greater Dionysia, in March, and the Lesser Dionysia, in December.

And as if NOT wasn't convinced that the country was falling apart enough, he had to run across the remains of volcanic eruption. 

"Does no one know how to clean up around here?" he squawked. And then he headed home.

Europe Travel    

Photos courtesy of Amy and Glenn Harper

Last Updated March 2001