Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Dekapenthimero (δεκαπενθήμερο)

Dekapenthimero (δεκαπενθήμερο) means fifteen days. T will be gone for fifteen days and I will be on my own with the dog, the cats and the grapes.

Early this morning, I drove T to the "Ioannis Kapodistrias" airport. (5:30 AM IS early.) It was surprisingly busy and teeming with people arriving, and a fleet of charter buses loading up to carry them all, well, elsewhere (wherever they cart tourist en mass off to... hotels, holiday villages, Aqualand??).

Meanwhile T has a long day ahead of him. First he flies to Athens (1 hour) then from there (after a minor 3 hour wait) direct to New York (11 hours!) From New York, (after a 2 hour wait), he connects to his last flight of the day to Chicago (another 3 hours flying time) he arrives at 7 pm local time, warmly greeted by strong son to tackle suitcase and cart him off to apartment with guest room. So after 20 hours of traveling time he will be able to finally rest his weary bones

HA! I have no doubt that it will easily be another 3 or 4 hours as collecting luggage from and then getting out of O'Hare Airport is no quick trick! Then too there will be the general greeting of family and probably meal of some sort. Plus he will have caught his second or third wind and hold together for a while anyway.

On the one hand I envy him seeing everyone, on the other hand I really feel for him and his weary bones! As a former world traveling mega star, T (in his previous pre- "retired" life) has learned how to conserve his energy. He is one of the few people who, shortly after he straps himself into the seat, can automatically fall asleep, making him the least fun person to sit next to if you happen to be a chatty individual.

We once counted the number of countries he worked in and traveled to and came up with 60. He's flown pretty much every airline (and many that no longer exist) and is very familiar with the artificial existence of life on board an airplane for long haul flights. He's had many adventures; some interesting, some baffling, a few scary, and a couple downright dangerous. But that is all thankfully in the past. Now he's just going for family sake. Now he only travels because he wants to travel, not because he has to travel.

Still, travel isn't as much fun as it used to be. Now it's all about the destination I suppose But in another time, "travel" used to be as much about the journey as the destination.

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  1. When I was a student, I loved travelling and exploring...then work took over and I had very little time free.
    Now we don't go very far very often, but we try to make the journey interesting....'planes defeat us, though.

  2. Dear Fly,

    I LOVE to travel and see things but honestly, I've really come to dread flying... not because of any fear of flying or act of terrorism, but more from many of the petty bureaucratic, security measures!

    For sure I can understand the need for security (tho I still have trouble getting my head around the taking your shoes off thing, particularly now there are little mats you can stand on that will set off alarms if it senses any explosives) but it seems that so much of the security measure are still rather dependent on the frame of mind of the 'idiot in power' who determines whether or not you are a security risk!

    I can't tell you how many times I have been pulled over to the side to be "frisked" because my earring or belt buckle or watch or SOME stupid thing caused the machines to go off!! (even better, in some airports in the US you have to go and stand in a big glass box while everyone mills past you and looks either sympathetic, curious or scared, and wait to be frisked like you've strapped yourself with airbags or something!)

    My 83 yr old mother is almost always stopped unless she's being pushed in a wheelchair by an airline rep. It's ridiculous. I'm convinced that in most cases, they simply pick people to bestow additional security measure on who will be most intimidated by their authority.

    [I will add, I have never been too impressed by people trying to intimidate me...]

    As we have family and friends scattered everywhere, airplanes are necessary evils. But to me they no longer symbolize travel but rather a sort of anti-travel.

  3. I don't enjoy flying...it's just necessary to get from A to B as quickly as possible.

    And is it a man thing? The being able to sleep anywhere? My husband can do it...but I certainly can't?

  4. I will say that on occasion it's very disconcerting. We flew to Brussels last spring and I was talking to him and when I looked over he was already dozing! He always takes a book with him but he never reads it on the plane. The noise of the plane must act like some kind of soporific!

    The only thing he can't seem to sleep through is the neighbors dog barking at night when we're trying to go to sleep. (Then he's wide awake mumbling and growling and keeping ME awake!)

  5. OH dear Ayak, thanks again for the idea of lentil soup! I made a pot of my grandmother's lentil soup (similar to yours but it has ham in it!)

    Lentils are great if you are on a diet, and with T gone, I can eat what I want for dinner.

  6. I've tagged you...pop over to my blog to have a look



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