Not much to Nafplion. We ate tasty Greek baked goods before seeing if we're old enough to rent "motos," which are somewhere between motorcycles and scooters. We qualify, but Riad had reservations so we test drove before putting our money where are motos are. His prudence was justified, as my few minutes of motoing were disconcerting enough to dissuade me from my hope of owning a motorcycle. It simply seems too little around me to be travelling so quickly, especially considering there would be other drivers around meÖ in a parking lotís disconcerting enough.
So, after an unsuccessful exploration for a car, we settle for the bus. An hour later weíre in Mycenae, which is basically just ruins. The coolness of them being thousands of years old is offset by the fact that we paid euros to see what amounts to basically nothing more than an important pile of rocks.
This holds my uneducated attention for all of 15 minutes, so Iíve got over an hour and a half to kill until the bus back to Nafplion. Riad wanted no part of it, but I talked Tom into an attempt to hike up a nearby mountain. With a bet to Riad on how long itíll take us to reach the top, weíre off.
I promptly earned a combination souvenir / badge of stupidity: attempting a groovy twisting / jumping around a boulder while wearing Birkenstocks earned me a nice scrape on my upper chest. Keep it secret: Iíll tell everbody else itís from a fight with a crazed Greek bear that I fought after it ate the snake that bit me in the same spot:)
As usual, unforeseen complications arose. Chunks of what seemed steep hill are actually more like rocky cliff, in swatches just small enough to avoid justifying turning back. We heard some thunder, arguably increasing in loudness, so Tom turned around. I decided to be a tough guy and keep hiking. To put it cinematographically, the rest of the hike was like a movie in which the protagonistís plight is kinda frightening but at times enviably exciting, maybe ďAlienĒ but not quite as death-defying.
Shortly after Tom left, I began to notice big spider webs in my path, many of which were inhabited by arachnids large and exotic enough for me to change course when met with an avoidable web and carefully detach those I had to pass through, watching for sudden moves from and ready to smash the little buggers. Anyone watching would have thought me more than a little crazy, rushing up the mountain as fast as I could as I fall out of my Birkenstocks into thorny bushes and slowing to a careful crawl while pinching webs away. Around 90% of the way up, the increasingly loud thunder, hostile flora and fauna, slowness with which I was closing the distance between myself and the peak, and nearing departure time for the last bus of the day back to town combined to turn me around. I rushed down the mountain as it started to rain, having lost to nature but avoided getting struck by lightning.
After buses back to Athens and wandering for a hostel, Tom and I catch ďThe Matrix Reloaded,Ē Greek subtitles and all. It seemed like the audience was more responsive than those Iíve experienced in the U. S., laughing loudly at the preview for ďBruce AlmightyĒ and during parts of the excellent-but-not-quite-as-good-as-the-first movie that I wonít spoil for you. I donít know that Iíd entirely appreciate most major films shown in the U.S. being in Greek, but this nearly full theatre didnít seem to have a problem with the analogous situation. And Iím rambling and itís late and goodnight.