The Spaces Between Your Fingers

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This trip to Greece was my first. It had been a long time coming, or at least I had thought so. My cousins would go every summer together and I would be home, wishing that I was going with them. My father couldn't afford to take the family on a trip to his father’s homeland, but he had enough to buy me books all about Greece and all the monuments there. When we finally went to Greece, it was, ironically enough, the first summer that my cousins weren't able to go.

It was taller than I had expected, and way more crowded than
the photos in books would have you believe. I admit, the crowds were cramping a
little on the experience. Not too many things get quite under your skin like
groups of loud, rambunctious tourists with their cameras and their tripods, the
ones who seem to find it perfectly acceptable to  carve their initials
into monuments  that are trapped behind
ropes and signs that read DO NOT CROSS in big bold letters in twelve languages.
And it’s true, I was surrounded by them. But somehow, in the midst of the
crowds and shouting, I was able to tune them out. I stood in the center of the Acropolis, and closed my eyes, and I just breathed. Right then and there it was
like I was in the temple at its prime, like all the hustle and bustle around me
was falling away. I could smell the stone, the dirt, and the smell of the trees as the wind whipped through the columns of the temple. I could hear my feet crunch on the gravel beneath my feet, the same dust that Socrates had shaken from his sandals over 2,000 years ago. I felt as if I'd reached through the passage of time and connected to a singlular moment, and plucked the sights and sounds from then and held it in the now. I had tuned into the past. My cultural past. It felt
like I was meeting an old friend for the first time in many years.

It felt like I was coming home. 

The Homeland

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July, 2009
Athens, Greece

This trip to Greece was my first. It had been a long time coming, or at least I had thought so. My cousins would go every summer together and I would be home, wishing that I was going with them. My father couldn't afford to take the family on a trip to his father’s homeland, but he had enough to buy me books all about Greece and all the monuments there. When we finally went to Greece, it was, ironically enough, the first summer that my cousins weren't able to go.

Decade: 2000s
Rating:
Recorded by Katarina Kapetanakis on January 16, 2014
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