Living in Greece

A practical guide to moving, living, working & traveling in Greece, plus musing and misadventures from an American in Athens

Greece, land of Gods

Greek godsGreece. A place so many call paradise — sun, sand, sparkling sea.

Greece. A land almost too ethereal, too magical and too steeped in mythology to be real.

Greece. A country granted to Greeks because they came late.

The story told to me nearly a decade ago by my friend Giorgo goes like this.

On the day the Gods were distributing land to mortals, some came early and received large countries that would become the United States; some came on time and got countries that became known the Commonwealth or Spain; others came later and got Finland and Russia. Still good countries, just a little cold.

But the Greeks had been indulging in Bacchian revelry the night before and came late. By the time they arrived, there was no more land to distribute.

So what did the Gods do? Initially, the Gods thought to teach them a lesson for being irresponsible and let them wander the Earth to inhabit other lands as immigrants. But that seemed a little cruel.

One of them remembered a small parcel of land and some islands they’d set aside for vacation. And after much discussion and debate, it was decided they didn’t need this land and gave it to the Greeks.

And so the land of Gods became Greece. Why?

Because the Greeks came late.

In the News

Greece, land of gods and luxury travel” — Kathimerini

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Journey to Hellas
Live Your Myth in Greece 2008
True Greek experience
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  God wrote @ January 21st, 2008 at 12:32

Greece would be a great place if Greeks could be tamed.

  photene wrote @ January 22nd, 2008 at 15:23

Eureka, I knew it wasn’t me, it’s in my DNA, I feel much better about myself today 😉

Kat, I truly enjoy reading almost every day as I get to learn things about my heritage that I never knew, as well as the reality behind the headlines. It’s terrific!!!!!

  ein Steppenwolf wrote @ January 23rd, 2008 at 15:56

A Georgian had told me the very same story, with the difference that the people of party-goers were the Georgians, the most beautiful land in the world was Georgia, and after centuries of monotheism there was only one God left 🙂

  rositta wrote @ January 23rd, 2008 at 17:07

I just learned something new today from you. Nice story..ciao

  Kat wrote @ January 24th, 2008 at 00:27

G – Some things are best left untamed. If the greater picture would improve, no doubt other things would follow. If you get me. My friends voted me, “Most likely to kick it with Jesus.” Maybe we’ll talk. 😉

P – LOL, and why thank you! 🙂 This site was started to be truthful and realistic, not PRish and popular.

ein S – I suppose all countries have a similar story. I’m more likely to believe the version I repeated since I often hear Greece referred to as, “Land of Gods.” Never have I heard Georgia called that.

R – Thanks to Giorgo. It’s a story he told me and I liked it.

  rositta wrote @ January 24th, 2008 at 17:08

Yes well, I don’t know Georgio but it’s you who passed it on…ciao

  Theophilos wrote @ January 26th, 2008 at 07:18

Land of Gods? Hmmm… More likely, land of illegal landfills, I’d say. I have long left all the commercials behind and try to deal with the everyday grind, without much success. Good to have dreams, though. Makes you feel better, even if illusion isn’t going to get you too far… Now, let’s go for “paedakia” and forget about tomorrow!

  Kat wrote @ January 29th, 2008 at 18:44

T – LOL! It’s just a story — Giorgo never said it was a true story. 😉

L – I know! When I went to visit you just now, I thought “Oh my gosh!!!” What’s even more funny is my OTE connection is/was acting up, and I’ve pre-written posts and set them on a schedule to publish on a schedule, so that means we might have even come up with similar ideas at the same time. Scary!!! 🙂

It’s an old photo. It’s pre-Athens 2004, before they hacked down a lot of trees to make room for the tram and plant grass, then realized they had no sprinkler system, and the trees could have helped with irrigation and shade. But there are still trees on Filipappo on the left and a fair number in the National Garden on the right.

  luc wrote @ January 29th, 2008 at 18:16

Kat, that was indeed a unbelievable coincidence, both of us coming out with slightly different versions of the same story one day apart! I have now discovered your RSS feed so in future I will be more aware of your postings.

B.t.w., that’s a fantastic photo you’ve put in the header now. Truly impressive view. I’ve only been on the Acropolis once since we live here, and that was 2 years ago. I don’t remember all that greenery. Is that still there or did you use an old photo?

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