Άγιον Όρος

Greek language class ended today and now I’m headed to this place, accessible only by boat. I got a permit to enter as a pilgrim because of a cancelation on Sunday, which is some kind of miracle. Only men are allowed, because this self-governed monastic state is dedicated to the Virgin Mary and females of all species are kept off the entire peninsula. The 20 monasteries follow the Julian calendar (with a 13-day time difference) and most of them have been continuously operating for over 1,000 years. Hermits, caves, portable icons and home-made wine. I’ve been told to bring matches, since many of the monasteries don’t have electricity.

Back in Athens on Thursday.