Keeping to the theme of our trip, today was a day of travel. However, before departing from Delphi we stopped at its museum. Arranged chronologically, it held artifacts from the Mycenean to Roman periods. We experienced first-hand the masterful workmanship of the friezes of the SyphnianTreasury. It was created in the Archaic period, and we were able to recognize it as Ionic due to its continuous frieze. Three sides represented scenes from the Trojan wars. We were also able to identify the various gods baed on their identifying features throughout a frieze depicting the battle of Ajax and Memnon. Zeus sat in a chair complete with back support while Athena wore her aegis and Ares was simply antisocial in full armor.
In conclusion to our museum tour, we viewed the famed Charioteer. The Charioteer is a cornerstone sculpture since it marked the shift from archaic to classical periods of ancient Greek art. It is a rare find since it is one of the most intact example of ancient Greek bronze statuary.
We spent the rest of the day on the road to Kalambaka. We passed over the mountains that Xerxes’ army didn’t want to cross before the famed battle of Thermopylae. This conflict was unavoidable since that one pass was the best way to move the massive army through the region without becoming stranded in the mountains.
As we entered the Thessalian Plain we saw a herd of the famed Thessalian horses. We stopped briefly for lunch at a Greek rest-stop. There many of us took the leap and ate at Goody’s, a Greek fast-food restaurant which served gyros, burgers and salads.
After arriving in Kalambaka, a few of us went on a hike to better view “Meteora”, or the famed monasteries built into the cliff sides. Today also turned out to be the feast day of St. Anthony. We were in for quite a treat when we heard chanting coming from the monastery. It was also wonderful to see that the monasteries were still in use despite their age and inaccessible they appear to be.
We had dinner at a fabulous restaurant where we were served yogurt topped with rose-water for dessert!
Tomorrow we will continue to explore these Meteora before heading to Thessoliniki.
-Stephanie and Katherine