We got an early start--6.30am wake-up call, 7.30am breakfast, and 8.30am on the bus.
I'm not sure if everyone else would agree with me, but I was very pleased with the results of this early start: We were the first to visit the sanctuary of Epidauros and had the site all to ourselves (except for a couple of dogs sunning themselves).
Not sure when this phone booth was last used.
Just us in the theater.
'Theater,' as our guide Emilios said, means 'a place where you get a better view of things'---theomai means 'I see, watch' in ancient Greek---here's the view from the top row of the Epidauros theater.
We then drove a half-hour to Mykines, which is the modern name for the ancient site of Mycenae, once the seat of the kings in the Mycenean Age (ca. 1600-1100 BCE).
This is the famous Lion Gate, with two lions in a sort of triangular formation and an upside-down column between them.
This is the view from atop the citadel.
About a minute's drive away, we saw the 'Tomb of Atreus'---it's a tholos tomb, tholos meaning 'beehive' as that was the shape of the tomb.
The roof is conical, with the point--the 'keystone'--being at the top. The whole roof is made from stones set tightly in together.
After a morning of visiting two archaeological sites, time for lunch, of course.
We've eaten at this restaurant for the three years I have taken students to Greece and I've ordered the same thing for lunch for three years in a row (at the same price):
We drove over the mountains to cross to the western coast of the Pelopponese---there is still snow in the mountains.
In speaking to Emilios, I learned that, last year, he had had another teacher leading a group of students, and that teacher also has an autistic son---and the child came on the trip, bus and all! He was apparently non-verbal and mostly quiet. Emilios had (understandably) confused her and me---I showed him Charlie's photo so he'd know that it was not Charlie who was that trip. There followed a very interesting conversation about disability and Greek society throughout which I said a few 'somedays.'
As in, someday, Jim and Charlie (whose sleeping schedule is very off and who has been insisting that my dad sit in the passenger seat of the white car; fun bike ride in Jersey horse country) will be standing in the theatre of Epidauros and surveying the plains of Argos like the Mycenean kings once did, too.