Friday, November 21, 2008

Athens day 4

Longitude: 22 degrees 10’ 38.18”
Latitude: 38 degrees 25’ 39.61” and an altitude of 700 meters.

What is at this…The Village of Sotena where my great grandfather and grandfather lived. (Before my grandpa came to the US)
Thinking it would be a quick 3-½ hour drive to the village from Athens and stop at Delphi on the way. OHH was I wrong. We got of to a very very late start. Then the GPS took us on a slow way and the weather was bad in some spots to Delphi we could not even see the front of the car due to the fog.
munchies for the road
With a brief so-so meal break in Delphi we were still in search of the village. The drive through and on the mountains with the view of the sea below was fabulous.
My favorite town we drove through was Arachova (it looked like a fancy village) We did try and stop but there was no parking to be found so we thought on the way back we could try and stop. 

Arachova from a distance-we actually saw cloud coming a crossing the road in some spots here.

Finally we got to a road that gps told us to go up. The road was a single lane dirt road up a huge mountain – A mountain nobody told us we had to go up a mountain. I called my Parents to which my mom said “when you dad and grandpa visited the village (like 60 years ago) they had to take donkeys up the mountain to the village”. What donkeys and the top of the mountain! So we started up the mountain in a compact beat to shit Suzuki with a missing hubcap and no get up and go power. We made it ¼ of the way up then carefully turned around. Did I mention it was very narrow with no shoulder just a long way down on the side of you. It was what Joe called switch backs up the mountain.
Views from only 1/4 of the way up the mountain of death as we called it.
on the left of the photo you can see the other side of Greece

Then we tried it again and drove up all the switch backs after a very long hour we reached a village that was all quiet and saw a church (which my great grandfather help build in his village) I told Joe to quick turn around so I could take a photos of the church then we could head back down because it is dark now. All of a sudden these people just appeared from nowhere. 3 old men with there worry beads in hands approached the car and we asked if this was the right village by showing them the photo copy of a map and the letter from the president of the community that he originated from there. There was a scribe of a signature on the bottom of the paper that got them all excited but from what we could tell we had to go back 10k then take that road.
On our way home we got turned around and missed the cute town – not sure how there is only one main road – we stopped at 2 gas stations on the way home for directions. All road signs out this far are in the Greek alphabet words no English translation. My years in the sorority helped with the Greek alphabet but not the language. (in the museums for abcd or alpha, beta, gamma, delta)

After 10 hours in the car we were back in Athens. The real kicker of this is…I bought a road map this summer in the US to use due to the fact the village is so small (50 people) it isn’t on the map and I had a bad photocopy from my uncle that I was trying to follow. Any way I looked again at the map the rental car company gave us – it didn't have road number on it so we used the other map – the darn village was on that map showing roads to it….the F@*%!  

Oh well I got to see cute old traditional Greek men. I’m afraid that is the last of them the little boy we saw in the village looked like any other boy not to mention Athens was really Americanized.

side of a mountain 
War Monument
Cute house/church on a little island. Behind it you can see the main road we came down, our ears were popping the whole trip with up the mountain down the mountain.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The mountains are beautiful to look at,but I don't want to drive on a road of any kind to the top. Love the little villages tucked in here and there. Mom