Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Thessaloniki (Heather visits)

My sweet friend's husband surprised her with a visit to see me!! We spent some time tooling around Germany, and spent a weekend in Greece, just us girls. It was such a great trip, and so much fun to hang out with one of my besties. She has fought and overcome Lyme disease, so this trip was even more special, knowing that even a year before she wouldn't have been physically able to do it. We are so thankful to God that He chose to heal her.

We started our time together touring around Munich. We took the train and visited Schloss Nymphenburg. The palace was nice, but the grounds were the real attraction. So pretty!!

Our trip to Greece was amazing! The flight from Munich only took about 2 hours, but the change in culture was very noticeable. The architecture and views were breathtaking! Neither of us had been to Greece before, so it was new to both of us. We saw a lot of ruins, with modern buildings built right up next to them. 

Unbeknownst to us, there were protests scheduled for the weekend we visited, and the tower was closed to visitors because of it. We took a sneaky selfie to get the SWAT buses and trucks in the background. We asked a policeman if we were in danger, and he said it was the rival government groups fighting each other. Nobody had any guns, but apparently they were throwing rocks at each other (and the police) an hour before we showed up. We didn't spend too long in the area, but it was interesting to see a protest like that up close.

We ate a lot of really good food (Heather eats gluten free, and Greece was a great place to experience that...lots of seafood and meats and gelato that fit into those restrictions nicely).  We also found a Starbucks which is a treat for me, since the closest one to me right now is over an hour away. I miss having one on every block! :)

We spent one evening taking a "cruise" around the harbor which was pretty fun. I love being out on the water, and at sunset it was that much nicer. The cruise itself was free as long as you bought a drink or snack on board...such a neat idea, and a fun way to see a different perspective of the city! 

We didn't have a car for most of the time and just walked around the city, and I'm thankful we decided to go that route.  The traffic and parking was terrifying!

Our last day, we decided to rent a car and drive to the peninsula and spend the day at the beach. It only took about an hour to get there, including a quick detour to try to drive through a field (thanks, Google maps). The scenery was incredible! We were there in the off-season (March) so almost everything was shuttered closed for the winter along the coast, even in the "bigger" towns. A few places had signs of life, with people painting their buildings or pressure-washing their patio furniture, but for the most part, we were alone on both beaches we visited. It was too cold to swim, but we enjoyed spending time exploring, and eating some sandwiches in a lifeguard stand. It was a really nice way to wrap up our time in Greece. 

Greece was a great choice for a girl's trip, and we never felt unsafe, even with the protest. It was easy to navigate, and almost everyone spoke English. Really fun memories!!

Once back in Germany, we spent a day at Neuschwanstein and Hohenschwangau. So fun to take a carriage ride and tour the castles again. And we are so similar, that we wore the same shoes :)

It was another whirlwind trip, over way too fast, but with good friends, you pick up right where you left off, and that's how it is with Heather. Love her to pieces and miss her tons.