Ancient Corinth, Loutraki, then Home

Cassandra regards an occupied sarcophagus.

Cassandra regards an occupied sarcophagus.

Sunday morning started with a drive to church for a light breakfast at 9:30 and then a couple services that lasted until about 12:30.  Music before the Sunday School hour was led by three people playing guitars as we sang a collection of choruses.  A ladies choir sang before the morning service, accompanied by a piano that has no doubt seen better days.  In fact, I played the piano for the midweek service on Wednesday night, and though the keys and notes were in fairly decent shape, the sustain pedal didn’t work at all, relegating everything to a rather vapid staccato.  It would be the perfect piano for Bach though!

The morning service was dedicated in large part to a communion service, something the church here in Athens does a few times a year.  Pastor Lawson mentioned Deuteronomy 32:14 as part of an explanation how transubstantiation is not Biblical.  The verse uses the words “thou didst drink the pure blood of the grape.”  I had never noticed this verse before, and found it to be an interesting cross reference to the passages talking about the Lord’s supper.

After church, the Lawsons and I drove to ancient Corinth where we explored the vast ruins and museum of this Biblically-significant city.  An imposing, granite mountain looms in the background, and I could see the parapets and walls of a lofty citadel perched on its peak.  Brent told me a bit about the citadel, but then somewhat discounted it by saying that it was from the Medieval period and thus was much more modern than the ruins we were exploring here in ancient Corinth.  I suddenly realized how many layers of history a place like Greece has.

The sun was shining rather warmly, so we retreated to a shady beachside taverna in nearby Loutraki.  After lunch, the kids and I went for a somewhat brisk swim in the still-chilly Mediterranean.  I swam out for a ways, as I usually like to do, until I allowed myself to be freaked out by large, dark shapes on the sea floor far below me but quite visible in the clear water.  The beach was made of smooth pebbles instead of sand, and I taught Andrew some stone-skipping techniques.  Soon the afternoon was waxing late, and we returned home. 

The next day would beckon me home.  It seemed that I had only just arrived, and indeed four days is not terribly long.  I realized even on my first day in Greece that I would need to return again when I had more time to visit more of the country.  I suppose that even the quick visit I had time to squeeze in was better than not coming at all, but I definitely feel like I only got an appetizer.  It was wonderful to meet and befriend the Lawsons, and I’m deeply grateful for their hospitality. 

Perhaps someday I’ll be able to return to Greece and explore some of the outlying islands such as Crete and Santorini.  I’d also like to see deeper into the Peleponnese.  Another area that looked very inviting was the Mt. Pilio peninsula.  Throw in a stop in Athens to visit with the Lawsons, and I’ve got myself an itinerary!  Somehow, though, I feel like that day will not be terribly soon.  These international trips have indeed been wonderful opportunities, but they’ve also taken their toll.  I have to work doubly hard in between to keep up with business, and the frenetic pace of my life is now demanding some time to just exhale a bit.  With a trip to Wisconsin coming up in June and a return to Europe to visit Austria and work at Camp Arc-en-Ciel again in July, my life is showing no signs of slowing. 

Maybe that’s what they call retirement.

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