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The morning of the flight from Miami to Istanbul was going through amazingly. No traffic, no problems with check in, TSA, there were no issues up until this point. It must have been around 5am when we arrived to Turkey, 11 hours later, and still could not be happier until the odyssey of arriving to Greece began. Forget Homer’ odyssey, it was OURS that was painful. As we arrived to our gates thinking we were the first people to board, and even coming up with ways in which we would definitely get our seats upgraded since there were only a few people there, and after a few minutes passed and no announcement was made, a worker laughed at us and, unable to perfectly make sense of it, made a gesture of a plane flying and simply said “Your flight is gone”. I was not too stressed at this point because the same thing happened to me last year and the airline was incredibly generous and helped me right away. I wonder if they recently got brand new staff because as we were passed on from help desk to help desk, all they could say were different ways of how we had messed up and there was no other solutions but to pay a $1450 fee plus an additional $600 for the return flight, otherwise it would be cancelled.

Long story short – we made it to Athens. After having our gate changed at the last minute and flying a plane that felt borderline about to crash, we were finally in Greece. Fortunately, nothing was forgotten in the packing process and Athens has been so beautiful. Thanks to Professor Dodge and Dawn, we were able to have dinner when we arrived later that day and it was by far an amazing introduction to authentic Greek cuisine. The Acropolis was magnificent, from the history of it all to its views and scenery, it was all I could ask plus more. When we arrived all the way to the top and saw Athens in all her beautiful glory, I felt so grateful to have been able to come to such an astonishing city with a great group as well. The atmosphere, the food, even the locals are so welcoming that I have no complaints thus far about Athens. Except maybe the ocasional unpleasant smell, but I can put up with it in return of Athens showing us all her best in the meantime.

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