Sunday, July 29, 2007

Poetry Sunday: Morning in Nafplio

Four years ago, Dusty and I went on a glorious three-month tour of Europe. We weren't backpacking in the strictest sense of the word, but we did live out of backpacks and travel by Eurail. We were good little budget travelers, buying breakfast and lunch fixins from groceries and markets and staying in local no-name hotels.

One of the most memorable hotels was the Acropol in Nafplio, Greece. We wound up there upon the suggestion of two guys in a car who stopped right in front of us on the street corner to direct us to the hotel. Random, but effective. We asked to see the room they were hawking for 35 Euro and it was a bit shabby, plus there were two singles instead of one double bed.

We talked amongst ourselves and decided it wasn't the room for us. Once we were out the door, however, Acropol's manager conveniently "remembered" an available double room with a balcony just above the hotel sign, overlooking the street. Mm-hm. A bit more "good cop, bad cop" and we got the room for 25 Euro per night for seven nights. Awww yeahhh. We bad.

I wrote this on February 1, 2003, while having breakfast on the balcony of our room at the Hotel Acropol.

Morning in Nafplio

Kalimera! greets the shopkeeper.
The day’s news hangs like laundry
outside the store window.

Above the shop, a red-robed lady coughs
through her first cigarette of the day.
Coffee punches the back of her throat,
wrestles with the smoke on the way down to her lungs.
She adjusts her hair curlers.

Two balconies over, Yiayia shakes out the back door rug.
Yesterday’s dirt and cat hair fall
like confetti onto the street below.
A small parade of gold and blue musicians
turns the corner, maybe among them her grandson.

Today is Nafplio’s birthday.
The bells are calling everyone to church.
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