söndag 16 december 2012

Three weeks in Athens

Tomorrow I’m leaving Athens on a ferry to Chios and then to Turkey. I’ve been here now for three weeks and it feels like more than enough. I’m not a huge fan of big cities and it will be nice to get back on the road for a while.
I spent the first week here in Athens at a hostel a little bit outside the most touristic area which had its benefits with the food being a little cheaper and that the hostel had a nice kitchen. The downside was that the neighborhood wasn’t very nice. There was a lot of trash in the street and even if I didn’t have any problem it didn’t really feel safe. The first night my roommate had been attacked by some guys who tried to rob him. He was lucky to get away with only a little scratch on the cheek from the knife they put up to his face. So I didn’t feel much for going out alone at night.
But then all of a sudden I was told that that hostel was closing for the winter and that they were moving the remaining guests to another hostel the very next day. So there was nothing to do but to back up and move. The other hostel was right in the middle of the Plaka district next to Acropolis. It was very touristic and a lot of expensive restaurants everywhere. But the hostel was nice and I only had to pay the 7 EUR per night as I had done at the other hostel which was a good price since the normal price here was twice that. And there have been more people staying here which is nice and I have met a lot of people and made new friends.
Two things I planned to do while here in Athens was to get some new parts for the bike and fix it up and try to get in contact with someone who could help me with the pannier that was broken. The parts for the bike I ordered online the first day here to be sure that it would arrive in time. But then I had to move to the other hostel so I got a little worried there would be problem getting the package. But they assured me someone would be there to get the mail. After two weeks the package hadn’t arrived so I had to do something even though I didn’t have a tracking number because I chose the free shipping. I went to the post office close to the previous hostel hoping it would be there. And the people working there weren’t very helpful and only told me it was impossible to find. But after a while I got a man to look through the shelf with what looked like undelivered packages. He didn’t find anything but when another woman came by and saw my name on the paper she told me she recognized my name and found my package quickly on the shelf where the man looked just a minute ago. So after a lot of frustration I got the parts and now the bike feels great=)

And the problem with the broken pannier seems to be solved also after many emails to the company. Eventually a got help at a store here in Athens. When I had almost given up on getting a new bag they received an email from the maker of the bags that they were going to send a new one. So hopefully there won’t be any more problems with that and that the Greek post office won’t lose it.
The plan now is to cycle from Çeşme to Alanya or Taşucu and then take the ferry to Cyprus where I plan to stay for a while, if I don’t change my mind…

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