Man what a day… In total we traveled for over 12 hours today… Air Serbia isn’t the most glamorous airlines and they have you PACKED into your seats. It was only a 5 hour flight, but I started to get extremely stir crazy. We had a layover in Belgrade and Syd has had some horrible experiences with layovers before so she was stressing a bit. Luckily for us it all went off without a hitch and this time we were RIGHT in front of the plane so we had a few more inches of legroom.
It’s really cool out here. Super chill vibes. I’d equate it to the same atmosphere of sitting next to a beachside bonfire on a warm summer’s night. Everyone here just goes at their own pace and are just at peace with things. Another thing that blows my mind is the sheer amount of history around EVERY corner! I lost count how many wow moments I’ve had since we’ve landed. There is a lot of graffiti on all the buildings and Syd mentioned that it wasn’t so prevalent last time she was here. It must be because of the economic crisis that’s been going on here.
When we were done taking our short walk around the city we came back to the hotel and enjoyed a couple of cocktails on the bar. When we read the ingredients of the drinks they sounded SOOOO delicious, but they ended up tasting like medicine… Whatever… That’s what we get for trying to be fancy.
Also I’m pretty sure we’re going to die in the elevator at our hotel. It’s jolted a few times already and the doors don’t open all the way sometimes…
Coming back into a western society you are reminded that everything is so damn expensive here! But you know what you’re actually paying for with the uber inflated prices? Infrastructure. Seriously having drinking water from the tap, proper roads and just good western hospitality is worth the inflated prices.
Man, I am going to be ready when we do not have early flights anymore. We got up and got everything situated. We headed downstairs and waited for the taxi that Lina called for us. It is great being able to actually talk to the taxi drivers, they understand you and other then the bump in the road yesterday it is easy breezy! The Middle East has been awesome and I have no complaints! I would love to come back and see more of the sites and go into the buildings. The picture below is of the Grand Mosque and I would love to go inside next time. Sorry it is a little blurry we were in the car on the way to the airport.
**Also, mom the picture below shows I did eat before I got on the plane in Abu Dhabi ;). You and Wally are so annoying!!!!
When we got to the airport it took awhile to get checked in because they could not find Wally’s name and they were questioning if we needed a visa or not since we were stopping in Belgrade on our way to Athens. It got all cleared up and we were on our way to the gate. When we got to the gate we Skyped my mom for a little and I talked to my dad. I can’t believe I see my dad next week! It’s crazy! This trip has just flown by and now we are coming up to the end of it. NO no I do not want to think about that!! I am enjoying Athens.
The first flight I slept most of but yes we were very cramped and it was hard to move around! It was awful! The food was not bad, they served Serbian Beef Pie, I took a couple of bites then gave it to Wally. We were both pretty antsy and this was just a long and cramped flight. We landed in Serbia and they told us which gate to head to. Ugh, I had flights with stops! I have had one to many bad experiences so I was a little on edge. Luckily everything went off without a hitch and we were on the next plane to Athens!
This flight was nicer since we sat in the first row and had so much more room. We got little sandwiches and cookies for a flight that was only an hour and twenty minutes.
Side note – a lot of Europeans make comments that Americans are not traveled, well you can fly from Belgrade, Serbia to Athens, Greece and go on holiday like its no big deal. When I fly 1 hour and 20 minutes I get to the capital of my state or one state over! It is really irritating when people say that, most do not realize how big the US really is.
After our flight we got through customs, changed some money and I was able to pull out my change little Paris change purse and we ended up with more money since I had left over from the last time I was here. I scheduled a driver to pick us up and he was nice and efficient. We were at the hotel in no time. The elevators are very scary and it is much easier to just walk up and down the stairs so we do not die.
Once settled we walked to Starbucks to get our cups and found out that they do not have one on Santorini so we do not have to worry about that cup. Sweet! Less weight to pack! We sat and people watched for a bit and enjoyed. We stopped at a few shops and picked up some little things and enjoyed seeing the little shops/scouted where we will walk around tomorrow. The walk was lovely and it was cool to see Wally so excited over the sites and the history. Also, for the first time in awhile he would say “OMG that smells amazing” and I would agree. That did not happen often in China! HAHA he would walk by stinky tofu and start salivating and I would gag, its cool to be in a place where we both think the food smells good.
We got back and went to the rooftop bar to see the view of the Acropolis and have a drink. We tried to order cool sounding drinks and they tasted like cough syrup but they came in cool glasses, well Wally’s did. The view was beautiful and the company was not to bad either ;).
Now off to bed and enjoying a full day tomorrow.