April 29, 2009

Athens, Day 34: Have you read that book on corpses?

We have started a “new quarter” with a new professor, Alain. He is quite different in that he has actual lesson plans, syllabi, and the reading always matches up to what we discuss in class; on the flip side, he has lots of projects and presentations for us to do that seem to actually count for a grade.

Yesterday we visited the Acropolis again, and today the National Museum. After the museum Paul took me and a few of the other science-interests to meet Sherry Fox, a bioarchaeologist/ex-forensic anthropologist at the American School of Archaeology. It was pretty awesome. She explained the basics of bioarchaeology, and tidbits from her years as an expert witness in trials. She says the best place right now for all that is Arizona State, which is quite unfortunate as, well, it’s in Arizona; however, all the best people are there, including Jane Buikstra. After that we came quickly back here, had a gyros, then a Greek quiz; in class we discussed the symposia, prostitutes, the role of women in Classical Greece, and at one point had on the board “exposure [of babies to the elements] – homosexuality – prostitution,” which Eric and I thought was hilarious.

I’ve been spending most of my free time (that is, the time not spent doing the tremendous amount of class reading) planning my trip to London this weekend. I think my plan will be to go straight to the BM on Friday, have my meeting, then meet up with my archaeo friend Georgia if she’s free then; Saturday visit the Royal Hunterian Museum (Sherry’s suggestion – I believe it’s one of the organs-in-jars type of museum, I think like the Académie des Sciences or the Mütter) and maybe the BM again, as they’re close by; Sunday go to Greenwich to the National Maritime Museum. The rest of the time I just want to wander around. I’ve been looking at maps and realizing what a complex city it is, and how I really would like to spend the summer there. (I also realized today that although Athens and I have become familiar, I’ve only just been south of the apartments once. Every other excursion has been to the Akropoli/Omonia/Monastiraki areas.)

Tomorrow an excursion to Corinth and then the long weekend.

Gyros eaten: 11

Weather: 70s and partly cloudy

Currency: 1.32 dollars/euro

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