fivemack (fivemack) wrote,

Trains; Thessaloniki 1

The train was three hours late; such things happen, and luckily the delay was in Serbia so the Macedonian border came at a civilised hour of the morning. The train trip through the two Macedonias was indeed impressive; I spent most of the daylight portion staring out of the window with the wind blowing in my hair, and ended up thoroughly covered in blown dust.

Hill after hill, some of them covered with low brush, some with bare charcoal branches and some of them looking like textbook examples of erosion. Little white churches at the tops of hills; vineyards; goats and donkeys on the farms. A large shiny-domed mosque standing defiantly just at the Fyromian border.

Thessaloniki lacks a proper hostel (there's a business plan for someone, though I suspect the property prices make it a difficult proposition), so I'm staying in a very central Real Hotel, costing for a night more than the place in Belgrade would have charged for a week, and took the opportunity for an unreasonably luxuriant bath. Have just booked in to a different hotel, via a service, at less than half the price for tomorrow and Monday; to walk into a hotel off the street and ask for a room clearly marks one as an irredeemable rube.

Then walking along the coast road, against an absurdly pretty sunset; the street is packed with trendy bars in which young Greeks are drinking cold frothy chocolate drinks and watching the world go by, so I joined them. And now to ask Google for a nice restaurant and go to it (Google was unhelpful, but wandering through the streets until you encounter the smell of souvlaki suffices).

I have forgotten the name of the person who tried and entirely failed to teach me classical Greek at age nine, but she will be dismayed to discover that I can't stop myself dotting my iotas, though maybe happy that I'm collecting vocabulary. Yes, no, please, thankyou, orange, peach, chocolate ... νε οχι παρακαλο εβχαριστο πορτοκαλα ποδακινο σοκολαδα.
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