Tuesday, February 5, 2008

I'm here- where's the OUZO???

Get ready for a long post. This picks up where I left off- the flight.

Let me first start off by saying British Airways is the most comfortable ride I've ever flown on and the staff bends over backwards to make you comfortable. As soon as I stepped on the plane, I was amazed by the massive size of the Boeing 777. 3 rows and 4 cabins- I was in coach of course. The First Class cabin literally had recliners. Each seat on the plane was equipped with a TV that had what was essentially TiVo. 20 channels. There was also a GPS that allowed me to see exactly where I was, the speed (top speed on the trip was in excess of 700 mph), time at the origin and destination, ETA, distance and other cool flight related information. Anyway- that flight was about 7-8 hours but I didn't sleep. Combination of nerves, excitement and the fact that I was literally travelling forward in time. Your body can sense that stuff. I arrived at London Gatwick around 8am Monday morning (2 am Eastern) and was elated to find that the Giants had won the Superbowl. Wish I would have seen that.
Now I went off to security- which was laughable. You have to understand- there is no TSA in anywhere except America- that's a homeland security thing. In London they just swiped me down and sent me through. Once I got on the flight (another, smaller BA plane) I was able to catch a few Z's- but it was only 4 hours so I didn't get to make up for lost time. As I flew in over Greece, I could see the beautiful terrain change. Lush water, looming snow-capped mountains and rocky terrain. Very mediterranean. When I touched down, I have to say it was a little chillier than I expected. We're probably looking at low to mid 50's here. That's all well and good, because I have jackets right? WRONG!
I was waiting at the conveyor belt and the typical fear set in. One bag, two bag, where's the third bag???!!!! WHERE'S THE THIRD BAG!!!??? Come to find out it was left behind in London! Beautiful! But luckily it was the most non-essential bag. It had all my supplements, weightlifting stuff and my jackets. I still have all my clothes and money- the most important stuff. The other suitcase will be here weds.
So I collected all my bags minus one and headed to the apartment. Let me just tell you, Greek is a hard language to read, and since I don't know much vocab I'm basically taking in thousands of letters a minute while only comprehending 2% of what I'm reading. It's very unsettling. But that 2% makes all the difference, trust me. On the ride in I passed tons of shops and residences. Thessaloniki is a young, urban enviroment with all the ammenitites, but it's harder to find them when you can't read signs! LOL- I did see a MET-RX store on the way though. The apartment is nice, relatively spacious with a balcony overlooking the streets (pictured above to the left). My roomate is awesome- lots in common. The building is set up similar to a Manhattan flat on the outside with a spiral staircase on the inside that leads to individual rooms. Walking around yesterday and today I was able to find basic essentials. Grocery store, gym, babershop. My ability to have basic conversation puts me lightyears ahead of my group. My training is behind right now. Today I woke up a 430 PM due to the jet lag- which is actually 10 am eastern (my average time). It makes sense- my body is still in shock. All in all I've proabably had 3-4 meals while I've been here consisting of either gyros, souvlaki or ouzo. LOL. Man, that ouzo is no joke. I only had what.....half a shot and it almost knocked me out. I'm just not a big drinker. So when I get my supps tomorrow and start school I can get into a routine and back into the gym. It won't be hard to gain weight here...the carbs are everywhere. But any type of meat is expensive as all hell. The American dollar is crap here- the Euro destroys it. At Sam's I can get 10lb of chicken for $30. Here I can get less than a lb for about $12. Uggh! Anyway- I'll post some pics and update the rest later.

No comments: