29 April 2009
We took a trip to Athens so Nik could become a United States Citizen and order his passport. We took the early train from Kalampaka, it leaves at 6:30 and it is a 5 hour trip to Athens. We were lucky to get the seats we had because the train was full and we had to buy first class tickets at 55euros for one way. Nik made a friend of the boy in the seat in front of us, he was very excited about his first train ride and was walking all over the place and entertaining the other passengers. Its a good thing that Nik is so cute because the passengers seemed more forgiving when he became a little loud and started to cry because he was so tired. He finally fell asleep and slept for about 30 minutes until we arrived in Athens. Greeks also really love children so wherever we went we were given preferential treatment.
The train drops you off right in front of a metro station so we got onto the subway and headed for the Acropolis. Even though Nik was tired we thought it would be a good idea to hit up this historical Greek site before heading up to Arthurs uncles house out "in the suburbs of Athens". Here's a picture of Nik and I riding the escalator, he was treated to so many first today because this was also his first Metro ride and his first bus ride. Athens has many stray dogs and lots of pigeons so he spent many lots of time chasing them and being very excited about so many animals. All of these great shots of the Acropolis and Parthenon were taken by Arthur. We only walked around it and did not go inside. We walked to Monastraki and had a Gyro and Fries and then took another metro and bus to Arthur's Uncle were Nik immediately felt at home and treated their apartment like he was at home. Please note: he likes moving furniture around and unplugging devices and being in charge of the remote. And there were plenty of remotes considering that the apartment had four rooms and four TVs. He also fell in love with his Cousin Fotini, I so wish she could move up here she was a great baby sitter. He is pictured below with her. Since Niks schedule was so out of whack and he was in a new environment he got very cranky and was acting like a very naughty boy, note to self: traveling to the States might be harder than I think.
The next day we got on the bus (last photo) to go to the American Embassy. No photos because last time we where there Arthur almost got tackled by Embassy security for taking a photo. Have I mentioned how Nik loves other kids, especially little girls, he likes to grab them and if I would let him I am sure he would be giving them kisses. HE LOVES GIRLS. and there were little girls at the embassy, boy is it embarrassing when your child runs head long for another child and embraces them.
The act of getting Niks passport was really easy, of course they had changed the form since I had copied it, so I had to redo the form. But we just gave them all of the information we had, his birth certificate, our marriage certificate, my current and old passports, Arthur's passport, my school records showing that I had lived in the United States and several other documents. 150 dollars and several questions later, they had Arthur and I hold up our right hand and solemnly swear that Nik was our son and they gave us his United States Birth Certificate. He is now officially half Greek and half American.
We took the metro to Syntagma Square for a quick bit to eat at McDonalds, fast and easy. Nik likes the chicken nuggets and strawberry milkshakes. We then headed for the train station to go back home. Nik chased some pigeons around and we got on the train at 3:30pm and got home at 8:30. It's good to be home.