June 10, 2019: Athens

Monday. GT2 Day 2.

No sleep for us. Our day began in the air, but started with us landing in London at Gatwich where we are spending the night. In the morning we will fly on to Athens. We arrived on time, just after midnight local time which wasn’t too bad for us, although at this point we were all starting to get just a little bit tired.

We had to pick up the luggage here as our morning flight was not connected to our overnight one from New York. So we had to go through customs and all of that stuff. So technically Emily got to be in England for several hours.

We used our time at Gatwick to move from the South Terminal where we had arrived with Norwegian, to the North Terminal where we are flying out with EasyJet. And there we located the pub that I had looked up ahead of time and thought that we should use, the Nicholas Culpepper. We found a table in the corner and ordered sandwiches and drinks. They are a twenty four hour spot, thank goodness.

The girls both got chicken pesto toasties. Dominica got a fried egg sandwich. I got a tuna melt, which was excellent. I grabbed the only cask ale that they had on pull, which was the Greene King IPA. Not bad. Emily ordered a glass of wine, her first time ever ordering wine (or anything) in public. And they thought nothing of it. She didn’t even get carded. Although the drinking age in London is sixteen, so being nearly eighteen she looks plenty old to be getting a wine with dinner. Carding people isn’t nearly as common in Europe as in the US where you expect it at every turn.

We stayed at the pub for a couple of hours. We could not go through security again until EasyJet opened up their bag drops, and that was closed due to how late at night we were there. So we were trapped in the pre-security area. By the end of that time, we were extremely tired. And Emily was pretty tipsy from her wine, which was not helping her with the exhaustion.

After a few hours wait, we were able to check Dominica’s bag and go through security. Then we had a couple of hours to wait inside of security. Here there was loads of shopping options including the Harry Potter Store.

Everyone was too tired to shop.. Madeline and I hunted down some coffee at Pret a Manger. That was about it. Flat whites, real European coffee.

We got on our plane and were off. We had to board from the tarmac, a first for Emily. We were in the next to last row. The girls and I sat together. Dominica sat across the aisle. There was no entertainment on this flight, I attempted to rest, but that was hard. The three of them managed to get some sleep. I got nothing. This is going to be a very long day.

It was around eleven in the morning when we landed in Athens. Ah, back in Greece!

It took a long time to get out of the airport and we had been planning on taking the subway to our apartment. But we were all so tired and the ride was so long and we were not totally sure of the location so we opted for a taxi. The price controlled taxis from the airport are thirty eight Euros. So expensive but not terrible.

The taxi ride was long and hot and Madeline was pretty sure that Dominica and Emily were going to get sick while we did it. Our driver found our AirBnB, though, without a problem and our host was waiting for us on the street. It was all nice and easy.

We got in and shown around the apartment. It is really nice. Two decent bedrooms, a really nice living room area, a giant wrap around balcony, even a roof top terrace. Dominica and I went downstairs for some coffee. Madeline and Emily went right to bed to get in some sleep.

Dominica and I went to bed after we finished our coffee and explored the awesome bakery that is right across the street. We picked up some croissants for later.

We all slept until the early evening. Then we dressed and set out. I did a few thousand steps, according to my watch, trying to find what was around us. There is a grocery store across the street, a barber shop next door, and a pizza place beside that. Plus the bakery across the intersection.

So since there really wasn’t any food except for the pizza plus, which our hostess had told us was the place to go, we just went there. We got two pizzas. Dominica and I got a standard margharita. Emily and Madeline got a four cheese. Then we hit the grocery store for snacks and supplies, and Emily’s first chance to see a grocery store in Europe. Kind of Madeline’s first, too, but she has been to the UK and Ireland and that is pretty similar. Then the girls all returned to the apartment, and I went and got our pizza.

We ate on the balcony. Emily discovered that four cheese often includes at least one blue cheese and that she does not like blue cheese. So that was not a big win for her. But the pizza was generally pretty good.

After dinner we decided to just go walking and see the Acropolis tonight, it is pretty cool lit up at night.

It turned into a pretty hefty walk. Very steep climb up the hill. Once we got high up, though, we found that we were close to the bar district and that there was a ton of stuff to do. We walked it a bit and found a hotel with a roof top terrace that looked interesting and so that’s what we did.

It was a great decision, we had a really nice time. Madeline and Emily both had their first ever cocktails. Madeline got a mud slide. Emily got a passion fruit martini. I got a fig sour which was awesome. Dominica and the girls got banana chocolate crepes, too. This was Emily’s first crepe, too. She is having a lot of “firsts” on this trip. I have started keeping a list, in fact.

The view from the terrace was amazing. A clear view of the Acropolis and many other sites. Unfortunately it was so dark that it was nearly impossible to film anything. But it was super cool.

We hung out there until we were tired and ready for bed. We came back and everyone went right to bed except for me. I stayed up working on uploading media and other tasks until about one thirty in the morning.

End of day exercise, about 11K steps.