europe: partheon

Monday, August 30, 1999

I’m feeling a little better now. I’m seated in a nicely shaded outdoor restaurant. It’s a little on the expensive side, but I feel I’m worth it, especially since I’m only spending $12 tonight on my rat’s nest hostel.

I visited the Partheon after another 3 or 4 hours of wandering. It was, not surprisingly, ancient rocks with some structure, a couple of columns here and there, and a museum of plaster filled statues dating back to the ancient Greek age. I guess some people call this the starting point of Western civilization. To me it was more of an ending point for traditional Greek culture.

I’ve figured out why I’m not incredibly impressed by these sites: what interests me is not the ruins or grand buildings of past times, but the civilizations that erected them. The stones and even the tour guides say and know very little about this. But just imagining what it must have been like to live there—experience a different culture, not just a different country, but a different time period. That would be something to write home about.

Less than three weeks and counting—daily.