Archive for June, 2011

HCHC Senior Trip 2011 – Thessaloniki

June 18, 2011

TweetThessaloniki was a good chance for us to settle down a bit. On the other hand, we’re still touring around twice a week. Plus, we’re taking Greek classes. These classes are just shy of awful. I taught language for 10 years and I’ve studied a language, so I know better than anyone just what we’re not getting. Plus, the air conditioner remote keeps getting locked up and the room is hot and stuffy.  Plus, there’s a lot of homework. I’m just short of giving up all together. I could barely pay attention today at all.

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HCHC Senior Trip 2011 – Athens and Agina Island, Greece Photos

June 17, 2011

TweetAfter you’ve been traveling for a while, especially when you’re moving rapidly from one place to another, everything starts to blend together after awhile.

There was one important moment during our visit to Agina Island, when we visited the monastery where St. Nektarios lived and where his relics are. We visit the room that he lived in during his time there. Our groups sang the hymn ‘Agia Parthene’ in front of the icon that St. Nektarios sat in front of when he wrote the hymn. I was so glad to have captured that moment on video, but the cheap memory card I was using failed and I lost it.

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HCHC Senior Trip 2011 – Crete, Greece

June 17, 2011

TweetWe had a brilliant time on Crete, but it was here that it began to seem that things were speeding up and we were running from one place to the next. However, this part of the trip was very special for me. We visited a monastery that had been re-founded by a nun who was close to Elder Porphyrios, my spiritual grandfather (spiritual father’s spiritual father). I saw something for the first time, an icon of the elder. When we got back onto the bus I saw another student had bought a similar icon in the bookstore. I held up the bus while I ran back in the hot sun to buy one for myself. I got there just as the nun who kept the store was leaving. As I ran back to the bus, I had the most perfect fall I’ve ever had. The lace of one shoe got caught on the buckle of the other. I pitched forward and fell flat on the ground. I skinned up my elbow and had a headache for the rest of the day, but it was worth it. The monastery was nice otherwise, there was a very old icon screen which is usually closed off but they let us in to venerate it.

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HCHC Senior Trip 2011 – Paris, France Photos

June 16, 2011

TweetParis was an amazing experience, and a bit of a surprise. We had been told we’d be going ‘somewhere’ in Europe before going on to Greece, but we didn’t know where. It turned out to be Paris. After Rome, Paris was my second choice.  It was great because did this first so I wasn’t exhausted from traveling yet, as I now am, and it’s just a beautiful city. Since I am with a tour group, we had, as is common with these groups, to see everything at a dead run. However, unlike our travels in Greece we got a little more free time  to walk around on our own.

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