|By: Paul S. Cilwa||Viewed: 4/18/2019
|Topics/Keywords: #Greece #Peloponese #Peloponesia #Travel||Page Views: 1019|
|Paul and Michael's visit to the Peloponese Coast of Greece, 1999|
December 11, 1999
The ferry had dropped us off in Igoumenitsa, in Ipiros, the northwestern coast of Greece's mainland. Athens is actually on a peninsula called Attica, which itself lies just north of a a very large and extended peninsula called Peloponesia. Our bus wound through the steep hills down towards the craggy coast of the water that lay between.
Outside, we got our first look of a country that is as different from ours (and the rest of Europe) as we had yet experienced. Remember, Greece lies on land called "Asia Minor"—it's barely in Europe at all.
One difference quickly noted, as we passed from town to town, was that Greek cemeteries aren't like ours. People are not buried below ground; their graves are all small, low structures built above ground. This suggested to me that the ground may be too hard, or, conversely, too wet for proper burial. Or, it may simply be a custom.
The bus was quite full and not the last word in bus technology, but it was comfortable enough. There was a restroom on board, though we never had to use it so I can't report on its state. But none of the other passengers seemed to hesitate.
At noon, we stopped at a restaurant—sort of—and got something to eat. I had something more like a Sloppy Joe than anything else; it tasted more like lamb than beef, of course, but was quiet good.
As we drove along, we passed through areas of gentle rain and torrent, and the occasional spot where the sun looked like it might peek through, but then changed its mind. I slept a lot, especially before we got to the Bay of Corinth, where Michael kept waking me with cries of, "Look at that!" and, "Quick! Get a picture!"
Amazingly, though we were taking them through the window of a moving bus, the photos came out pretty good—partly, perhaps, because the great beauty of the place just couldn't be diminished.
I admit to being saddened that the locals trash up their beautiful country even worse—actually, far worse—than Americans.