This photo is of me with Chris' aunt's son- Dr. Nikos Tsopelas, ophthalmologist, in downtown Athens.
Me agapi, Eleni
Thanks.... for sending that news story to me and all of my and your friends. What an experience. The Greek are surprised that I would come all this way to volunteer to make their Games successful. Great PR for volunteerism which is really a new word in the Greek language.
I have an invitation to visit Brazil from a young man I met who is living at the hotel. You never know, some day. Eleni
I'm getting into the routine now. I am scheduled to work 6-8 hours every day and have every 6th day off. I have 3 different shifts: 5 a.m. - 1 pm. or 11 am. - 6 pm or 5 pm. to 1 am. I must admit, though, that after arriving and checking in to get my lunch ticket, I wait for1-2 hours before I am assigned a specific duty. Today I helped at the West gate entrance, checking people's tickets to make sure they came on the right date and to the right venue. Then I helped them go through security. Our instructions are to be very polite and helpful. All of the volunteers are very nice to everyone. They check with me frequently to make sure I am not tired standing and they supply me with as much cold bottled water as I want.
The importantness of cleanliness is stressed. They are constantly cleaning, sweeping both manually and on small golf cart type devices with brushes that automatically clean. THere is this little cart that they drive that has 2 smiling faces on the front that says it makes people happy when the environment is clean.
Each day I receive a pamphlet: "HEALTH INFORMATIN FOR VISITORS TO GREECE" It has 3 sections: "Gastroenteritis-Traveler's diarrhea-foodborne diseases - "Airborne diseases" and "Sexually transmitted and bloodborne diseases." It is written in English and in Greek as are most pamphlets.
One I picked up yesterday was regarding what people should do when the temperature is very hot: Wear light colored loosse clothing made of cotton or linen, wear a hat with a large bill, wear sunglasses, Put on sun block at least an SPF of 15, drink water often, shower frequently with cool water, avoid alcohol.
Sent in on 9-2-2004 by Eleni
Hi everyone! My enthusiasm has still not diminished one iota. On Sunday my shift was from noon to 5:30. Then I asked one of the Supers if I could help usher folks into the stadium. She said OK so "I was in!" What a wonderful experience-the sites were breath-taking, the Greek dancing and music were great! The extinguishing of the Olympic Torch, the speech by the Olympic committee chairman; all was great.
Then the volunteers and the performers had a party and what did they do? Dance Greek!!!! accompanied by the lute and drums. Now everything is settling back and I am anxiously awaiting for the start of the Paralympics on Sept. !9. 2 days ago I was invited by Dr. John and Sophia Evrigenis from Sacramento to spend a night with them at Loutraki a resort area 1 hour from Athens. Beautiful. Rode the bus down the brand new road with tunnels. Had a swim in the clear warm thallassa (sea).
Tonight I have been invited to a reception for Rip Kastaris at The ministry of Foreign Affairs.
See you... Eleni