We awoke early yesterday morning to get the kids to school by 8:30 for the Independence Day show. The students had worked for a while to put on a show about Greece’s revolution against Turkey back in 1821. In the US we celebrate the day we declared independence after the war was over. In Greece they celebrate the day the revolution began. The kids watched the entire show in Greek, which left them trying to figure out what was happening. I sat in the back of the room next to Constantino, one of the teachers, who translated much of the show for me. It was fun watching all the kids perform and see our kids just fit in, even if they didn’t understand a word that was said on stage.
Before the performance the kids were playing soccer and Noah just jumped right in. Drew went off with a number of the girls and the two of them were just a couple of kids among their peers. We spent about 3 hours at the school and then headed back to the apartment. We had planned to take the long hike from Fira to Oia in the afternoon and Noah decided he didn’t want to go. So, Noah and Karley stayed back at the apartment as Ilise, Drew and I headed to Fira for the long hike. We parked the car on the road and found our way to the trail. We didn’t know how long it would take, but in the end we were walking for about 3 1/2 hours. It was long, but it was spectacular as well.
The walk allowed Ilise and I to spend some real quality time with Drew. We talked about the trip, how we are going to move forward without having teacher to push her and more. One of the best conversations was about the person she is becoming and how she will be able to enter her new school in September as a different person. She is confident and motivated in so many ways. Over the past 2 months Drew has been working out with Karley just about every day. She is loving the physical exercise and the feeling she gets by being in shape. This is very fulfilling for me and an extremely powerful lesson for Drew at 14.
On our hike we met a young couple named Adam and Tamar. They currently live in Israel, but Tamar grew up in NYC, just a block from where Ilise grew up, and Adam is from Toronto. We spent the last hour and change walking to Oia with the couple. It was a wonderful conversation. It turns out that Tamar’s father is a professor in Berlin and she promised to pass on our information. He will be teaching while we are in Berlin and she said he is one of the best tour guides in the world. We will see how this all plays out, but this trip just keeps getting more and more interesting as the puzzle pieces keep connecting.
We arrived in Oia and it started to get a bit cold. We purchased some water, which we really needed, and a bunch of dried fruits, which we really didn’t need but they tasted really good. We stayed in Oia for about an hour waiting for the bus to take us back to Fira, which came around 5:35. We started our hike around noon, so it was a long afternoon. The bus ride back introduced us to another couple from Chicago celebrating their honeymoon. We got back to the car in about 20 minutes and hurried back to the apartment because Noah was STARVING! Upon our arrival we took Noah to get some dinner and made it an early night for everyone. I had a couple of phone calls to make and then I spent about an hour with the Stanford students getting lots of information about places to visit in Berlin. All in all, another amazing day.
To a life well lived!