January 26: Bitter sweet last day in Greece!

This morning unfortunately the buses were still on strike. But luckily the metro was back up and running! We were excited to have one last ride on the metro! We journeyed over to the National Archaeological Museum to see their massive collection. Today was the day of presentations! First we heard about Ancient Greek lost-wax casting and how it was a technique used by the ancient Greeks in creating bronze statuary. Next we journeyed on to learn about the Antikythera Shipwreck. Melissa spoke about the Antikythera device (a very unique and intriguing mechanism that calculates a myriad of calendars, dates and times). It was so far ahead of its time that many people have tried to recreate it and were successful only within the last one hundred years. After that we heard from Cassie about the cargo of the shipwreck that was on display at the museum. Once piece that was particularly interesting was of the Antikythera youth that dated back to the 4th century BCE. It was one of the only statuary that they were able to successfully reconstruct almost to its original state.

Next we had a break for lunch at this lovely restaurant. It was our last group meal together! After our delicious last lunch we went on the Kerameikos and heard from Brittany about sepulchural epigrams on grave stele. We looked around at the beautiful grave monuments and learned how to create a story based off of the inscriptions and carvings. Our last presentation was from Shoshana about the Holocaust in Greece. She presented at the front entrance of a synagogue about the many resistance efforts made by the Greeks.

After this we had a bitter sweet dismissal from the academic responsibilities of the trip and had the rest of the day to enjoy and say farewell to Athens!

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