Another 48 hours
by, 04-23-2008 at 11:30 AM (11067 Views)
I must be one of the luckiest women in the world! Not only does my husband love me, but he invites me to take trips with him. With plenty of years with the same airline, he can "wish" for a destination to fly and "poof"--it's on his schedule.
I was fortunate enough to get a tiny taste of 3 amazing cities in one month--Istanbul, Berlin and Athens. I'd never been to any of them so it was such a treat! Flying off-season (Jan and Feb are pretty good times for standby) I can sit in business class and enjoy the ride. The flight attendants know where to shop and eat, and the pilots know where to take the train or tour a city.
Granted, 48 hours isn't much when the first few are getting to the hotel and catching a bit of sleep.
There was time in Athens to walk the neighborhood, take the subway to the base of the Parthenon and hike up to an incredible local restaurant. Psara's is the typical Greek taverna, cobblestone walks, long tables, wine, food, fireplace, music. Charming to the nth degree. We had a full day to make the trip again, on foot both ways, to the Parthenon and around the sites. back to the hotel, scout out a local joint--eat almost the exact same dishes, prepared in such a different way--excellent again! Up in the morning, pack, kiss the captain and head home. OPA!!
Berlin weather started as disagreeable, so we walked till it got wet, and took a hop on/off bus to enjoy this strange city. Construction galore--"Mr. Gorbachev, tear down that wall! " was ringing in my ears and I marveled at the mega-structures and mega-complexes and the huge forest/garden in the middle of the city! History abounding at every turn--yes, that was the location of Hitler's bunker (the bus tour doesn't mention it, tho--curious...) Prices were so far past those in Eastern European cities I'd visited recently, it was almost uncomfortable paying $6 for a little sausage sandwich from a street vendor. Pack and go. Would I go back?--maybe, but likely not. So many places to see...
Istanbul! Now that's a city I would visit and tour around more than once. Despite the stinky markets, nasty touts and sellers shoving "bargains" in your face, it was Magical, Romantic and historical. Not to mention twisty, mosque-d, scenic and nosiy! We stayed outside the city and took the train in twice--once to taste the bazaar and shop--pilots know where to get the watches and the market vendor was an adorable young salesman. He had personality and charm!! Food was outstanding and walking was on the top of our list--weather was temperate and sunny and I loved it all. My 48 hours are up--time to go home again.
I have another trip planned--I hope there's one seat available in a few weeks. Luckily, the shoulder season hasn't really started for tours to Pisa and Florence--that's next, right after we get back from our LL Moroccan vacation. Just enough time to do laundry and re-pack.
Message Edited by kyshel on 04-23-2008 12:03 PM