Week 6

Week 8

Wednesday May 13th

Sites Visited: Thessaloniki (city and archaeological museum), American Farm School

Where did we stay tonight?: Thessaloniki

Leaders: Ben Kahn and Alex Maceda

Today we woke up bright an early and left the lovely Hotel Vergina in the not so lovely Red Light District (Hi Mom!) to walk to the Agora bus stop.  Our little stint on Thessaloniki public transportation took us up to the city’s acropolis, where we received a morning lecture from PCC about the city’s history as we looked out upon it. Our fearless leader Ben then led us down the sleepy streets to Galerius’s Rotunda, a building whose purpose was originally unknown but later turned into a Christian basilica.  After picking up two more (canine) companions, we ventured past a Roman arch and to the famous Venetian white tower. We were able to walk up and stop at all of the high tech museum exhibits, unfortunately all in Greek. Nevertheless, we rallied onwards and upwards to the top of the tower for a wonderful seaside view.

Our next stop was the city’s Archaeological Museum where we given an assignment to discuss the advantages and disadvantages of making vessels in metal vs. terracotta, paying particular attention to the famous Derveni krater. While some groups opted for the local café/frappe scene, others opted for a more foreign option: Pizza Hut.  More ambitious groups ventured all the way across the city to the Museum of the Jewish Presence, as Thessaloniki was once home to the largest Jewish population in Greece.

After all was squared away with Derveni Tomb B, we made use of some of our Dartmouth connections and went to visit the American Farm School about 30 minutes outside the city.  There, we met up with Andrew Klein ’08 and Amanda Webb ’08, two current graduates working as interns at the school.  We got a look at the facilities- dorms, sport complexes, cow sheds? – in the back of a tractor-turned tour bus from the college’s assistant dean, and finally ended with a presentation of their summer program in the college’s library. Note to Dartmouth: computers built into the desks of lecture halls would look wonderful in Reed.

After saying goodbye to our compatriots we headed back to the Vergina, where Alex threw her weight around to get a wonderful conference room for our discussion group. The next hour saw a scintillating discussion of Iliad Books 6-8, and the many philosophical problems that came along with it… fate, chance, destiny… you know, the usual.  Alex then provided the group with her “discourse,” a reflection on her life, formative experiences, things she values… you know, the other usuals… to which PCC asked, “what’s the point?”

Existentialist questions aside, it was a great day with great leadership. 

Day 53 Photo Gallery:

Waiting for the bus to the citadel in Thessaloniki.

Waiting for the bus to the citadel in Thessaloniki.

Chris joins a couple of early morning lovebirds in appreciating the vista of the city.

Chris joins a couple of early morning lovebirds in appreciating the vista of the city.

Lecture outside of the old city walls of Thessaloniki.

Lecture outside of the old city walls of Thessaloniki.

Benellations

Benellations

Fanciful graffito

Fanciful graffito

Walking through the old Turkish quarter.

Walking through the old Turkish quarter.

Someone threw the baby out with the...something.

Someone threw the baby out with the...something.

In the heavenly glow inside the Rotonda of Galerius.

In the heavenly glow inside the Rotonda of Galerius.

Jerry and pal.

Jerry and pal.

The arch of Galerius.

The arch of Galerius.

Creepy mannequins of Thessaloniki.

Creepy mannequins of Thessaloniki.

Walking up the stairway of the White Tower, a former prison on the quay.

Walking up the stairway of the White Tower, a former prison on the quay.

Learning the history of Thessaloniki in the White Tower museum.

Learning the history of Thessaloniki in the White Tower museum.

The group drinks deep from the pool of knowledge.

The group drinks deep from the pool of knowledge.

Joe in front of a great fire of 1917 themed display.

Joe in front of a great fire of 1917 themed display.

An exhibit in the White Tower museum excites dramatic gesturing.

An exhibit in the White Tower museum excites dramatic gesturing.

Ben considers the life of a White Tower prisoner.

Ben considers the life of a White Tower prisoner.

Alex A. and Dallis interact with Byzantine pottery.

Alex A. and Dallis interact with Byzantine pottery.

More interactiveness: an animated cafe table which plays videos of the preparation of traditional Thessalonikian delicacies.

More interactiveness: an animated cafe table which plays videos of the preparation of traditional Thessalonikian delicacies.

Ben and Alex M. summit the tower.

Ben and Alex M. summit the tower.

A fine view north from the tower.

A fine view north from the tower.

Lecture on Roman portraits at the Thessaloniki archaeological museum.

Lecture on Roman portraits at the Thessaloniki archaeological museum.

Joe, Chris, Ally, and Jason circle the Derveni Krater, subject of today's assignment.

Joe, Chris, Ally, and Jason circle the Derveni Krater, subject of today's assignment.

The Derveni Krater.

The Derveni Krater.

Kathryn and Ben looking excited to tackle their assignment!

Kathryn and Ben looking excited to tackle their assignment!

Alexander the Great, favorite son and waterside hood ornament of Macedonia.

Alexander the Great, favorite son and waterside hood ornament of Macedonia.

Last stop of the day: the American Farm School in Thessaloniki.

Last stop of the day: the American Farm School in Thessaloniki.

The group subs out its normal bus for a tractor pull

The group subs out its normal bus for a tractor pull

Our noble steed.

Our noble steed.

Scenery around the farm.

Scenery around the farm.

Heading into the school's library for a brief lecture on the ways and means of the institution.

Heading into the school's library for a brief lecture on the ways and means of the institution.

Portrait of the founding father.

Portrait of the founding father.

Group shot with our hosts on the library stair.

Group shot with our hosts on the library stair.

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