Jim and Karen's trip to Greece travel blog

Musician at the restaurant

Greek dancing

Today was "moving day" as we bid farewell to Kavala and made our way to Thessaloniki by bus. Well, actually busses since halfway to our new abode the bus broke down. It was no big deal to us, but there were a couple people who were catching a plane in Thessaloniki, and they were none too happy. It was one of those times when we were glad we didn't have a good grasp of the language! Our new bus arrived in about 1/2 hour, and we were soon reloaded and on our way.

Both of us were impressed by the incredible number of sizeable grape orchards and olive trees we saw along the way. While in no way were they mega-farms they seemed to be sufficient for the needs of these (generally) poor farmers. It must take a huge number of migrant workers to harvest these crops.

We transferred to a local bus once in Thessaloniki, and the very kind bus driver made sure we got off at the right place. Parenthetically, we've been incredibly impressed with the general friendliness of the Greeks. They should be immensely proud of themselves. A short two block walk in the downtown area brought us to our hotel.

The Orestias Kastorias hotel has 'cozy' rooms (another way of saying very small), but each room has a balcony, and a 'two-way' door that deserves explanation. Opening the handle all the way up allows the top of the door to open inward about 6 inches. It's kind of like an old transom. Open the handle straight across and it became a traditional door. Close the handle straight down and it locks. It's ingenious, and once the concierge convinced me that it wasn't broken but was made that way all was well. Oh, the concierge was another in a long line very friendly and helpful individuals.

This afternoon and evening we took a much-needed orientation walk around Solaniki (another name it goes by) and had the delight of NOT having packs to lug around. As evening fell we had dinner at a quaint, but not recommended, restaurant. The friendly family who ran it was the best part of the meal. Tonight we're catching up on the blog, uploading pictures to SmugMug, and basking in the memories of Filippio. Besides, Jim isn't feeling quite 'up to snuff' and needs some down time. Karen's foot has recovered and ready to put on more miles.

P.S. It is now 12:30 at night and we just returned from a spontaneous trip to the restaurant below our balcony. We had appetizers and enjoyed a great time of live music and watching Greek dancing. What a great way to start our time in Thessaloniki.

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