Tuesday, August 12, 2014

First Vacation

One of the goals when we moved to the Middle East was to be able to travel to places that are far away from the US.

We just returned from our first trip.  We traveled to Athens and also visited the Greek islands of Mykonos and Santorini.

Every sunset on the vacation was wonderful.  This was the very first sunset looking out over the roof tops of Athens from the top of our hotel.
It was a spectacular trip.  Doug has been working very long hours and the trip was a great opportunity for him to recharge.

Doug’s office was closed the last week of Ramadan for Eid al-Fitr. Not a lot of work gets done during this time. Taking off during Eids gave us a great chance to visit Greece only 4.5 hours away from Bahrain.

FYI -- Here is what Wikipedia says about Eid al-Fitr.

Eid al-Fitr "festival of breaking of the fast"), also called Feast of Breaking the Fast, the Sugar Feast, Bayram (Bajram), the Sweet Festival and the Lesser Eid, is an important religious holiday celebrated by Muslims worldwide that marks the end of Ramadan, the Islamic holy month of fasting (sawm). The religious Eid is a single day during which Muslims are not permitted to fast. The holiday celebrates the conclusion of the 29 or 30 days of dawn-to-sunset fasting during the entire month of Ramadan. The day of Eid, therefore, falls on the first day of the month of Shawwal. This is a day when Muslims around the world show a common goal of unity. The date for the start of any lunar Hijri month varies based on the observation of new moon by local religious authorities, so the exact day of celebration varies by locality. However, in most countries, it is generally celebrated on the same day as Saudi Arabia.

In Bahrain, Eid is a big party and all normal business shuts down.  Sort of like Christmas except it lasts for several days.

With the office closed for an entire week, we were off to Greece to do our own celebrating. Neither one of us had ever been to Greece. Doug has been all over the globe and it is fun to go somewhere he has not visited.

Cocktails on top of our hotel with a view of the Acropolis.  Spectacular!

Athens was so much fun and a truly great experience.  We spent an entire day visiting the Acropolis and the Acropolis Museum. The history was interesting however the climb up to the Acropolis was long and hard.  Very steep, very long, very hot!

The Acropolis was so much bigger than I expected.  I can not imagine how they built it.  The guides said it was not built by slaves, the Grecians paid workers to build it.
One of the best parts of Athens was the food.  OMG, we were shocked at how great the food was.

Greek beer is pretty good.  The wine is also nice.

One night at dinner we could see the Acropolis high on the hill from our table.

The Greek Salad was fantastic at every restaurant. We had some at almost every meal it was so good!

Next we visited the island of Mykonos and Santorini.  I will write about those wonderful islands in my next blog.



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