Monday, June 11, 2012

Day 6: Mycenae, Epidauros and Nafplio

Those who went on the tour to the Argolid, a coastal strip of land between the Saronic and Argolic gulfs, had a wonderful time.

We first made our way to the Bronze Age palace center of Mycenae, the famed seat of Agamemnon's power. The castle-palace has much in common with the Daimyo of Tokogawa Japan of the 19th century. Here however, the Greeks are building large defensive fortifications in the15th to the 13th centuries BCE.
For many this was the academic highlight of the trip so far.
 (from left to right) AJ, Heather, "Italian Holly", Kate, Derek, and "British Holly" standing in from of the MH tholos known as the "Tomb of Clytemnestra"

 Everyone in front of the fabled "Lion's Gate" at the entrance

 Surveying the heights from Grave Circle A

Director Spanier showing the wheel ruts in the "Great Ramp" at Mycenae
(courtesy of Kate Shanteler)

Derek in front of the "Treasury of Atreus"

For a sense of scale

We then drove 45 minutes along a windy road to Epidauros, where the famed Theater and Temple of Asclepius (god of healing) is located. This was a special stop for our own actress and drama maiden Holly Bonarrigo (Italian Holly). Here I was able to sneak in a little time in the very center of the theater in order to demonstrate some of the acoustical effects of this perfect theater. This theater can hold 14,600 audience members and was remade in the Roman period.

 Italian Holly in the center of the Orchestra  at the Theater of Epidauros.

 The SAG crew that went on the Argolid excursion.

Heather and Kate in front of a Roman building near the famed Asclepion.

A few of us were worn out by the high temps and lack of clean, cold water (and it's only early June) so we drove until we found a nice taverna that seemed to have nothing but local Greeks. It was here that a dozen of the 4 dozen women sitting in the restaurant merely stood and danced like a flash mob. Heather Garoufalis, one of the SAG 2012 participants, is of Greek heritage and had learned all these dances as a kid in Greek Sunday School. So she got in touch with her Greek roots and joined in. They were very welcoming.

After getting a bite to eat we all hit the beach for some very well deserved R&R and watched the waves dash the coastline. All but myself went in to enjoy the cool sea water. We then walked around the old quarter of Nafplio, considered Greece's "most romantic" city.Here is why:

The sun setting over the bay with the castle island called Bourtzi in the foreground. This was originally a Venetian stronghold that was taken over by the Turks.

Kate enjoying the beauty of the bay at Nafplio during sunset.

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