Friday, June 17, 2011

Back in Paris

Arrived back in one piece to Paris today, pretty amazing trip for sure. Instead of the typical summary post, I'll write down the actual notes I took at each location...kind of an "in the moment" description of things that happened on the trip:

Paris, France
  • almost jumped and robbed by two guys at the bus stop at 2:00am, luckily I was able to run quickly down inside the Paris Metro station to escape them
Cairo, Egypt
  • there is no government here, only martial law with the army walking the streets with machine did I get myself into?
  • weird pushy tour salesman at hotel, reminded me exactly of the guy with the swords that Indiana Jones shoots with his gun
  • scammed by camel jockey guy at pyramids
  • power outage at 3:00am at hotel (no other buildings in the area affected), thought it was a hostage takeover situation...walked down 8 flights of stairs to escape only to find out that the power came back on and there was no problem
Luxor, Egypt
  • water smells very, very strongly of way in hell I can drink or even brush my teeth with it
  • internet down in entire city for three days due to cable break by construction on roads
  • so pissed off at people bothering me to go to their stores or ride in their horse carriage I just ignore everyone and pretend I am deaf or from Russia
  • someone used a key to try to get into my hotel room while I was in the room, barricaded the door for the night
Athens, Greece
  • Greek salad looked great, but tasted like crap
  • can wear shorts and no problem with long hair...most people speak to me in Greek thinking I am a local
  • excellent Metro system can get anywhere very easily
  • forced sweating from intense sun to dehydrate myself and eliminate need to urinate on 2 hour non-stop bus ride from Attica to Athens
Satorini, Greece
  • 8.5 hour ferry boat ride from Athens to Santorini...should have flown
  • first gyro in Greece, fucking awesome!!!
  • Santorini is basically the Greek version of Hawaii
  • tried to walk to the beach from hotel in the morning...way too far, turned back after 30 minutes
Mykonos, Greece
  • after five sunny days in Greece I finally get a chance to go to the beach...10 minutes before I arrive dark clouds cover the sky for the entire day
  • nice/mildly retarded (?) waiter at dinner
  • idiot noob on scooter crashed into a wall and would have run over me if I didn't jump out of the way
Samos, Greece
  • hotel 25 miles from ferry port...opps
  • beautiful authentic Greek fishing village
  • Samos Archaeological Museum had many small items that reminded me of the figurines in the movies "The Exorcist" and "The Omen"
Selcuk, Turkey
  • scammed by taxi driver going to hotel
  • killed one large moth, 3 smaller moths, 4 large ants and 2 fleas (one in my bed) in my hotel room
  • hotel smelled badly of moth balls (someone or something die in my room perhaps earlier?)
  • crappy Turkish food
Cappadocia, Turkey
  • 12 hour night bus ride was pure hell, asshole was sitting in my window seat, but wouldn't move forcing me to sleep in the aisle seat getting banged all night by people walking by
  • Turkish food from day tour gave me diarrhea
Istanbul, Turkey
  • if you like mosques, you'll love Istanbul...otherwise not too exciting, slightly underwhelmed
  • more crappy Turkish food
  • best Turkish food I had was at Popeye's Chicken at the Istanbul Airport before my flight back to Paris
While my notes were mostly pessimistic, angry jabs, I had the trip of a lifetime. As scary as Egypt was with only Martial Law, I'd have to say it was my favorite place on the tour. Ignorance is bliss, because if I would have know how fucked up Egypt is right now, I would have never gone there. I've never claimed to be the smartest guy in the world, but I sure as hell know how to take advantage of an opportunity when it comes knocking at my door.