Say Hey Willie Mays – Happy 85th Birthday

On May 6th, 1931 the greatest Baseball player to every play the game was born. Today Willie Mays celebrates his 85th birthday.

This photo was taken on December 23, 2013 at Candlestick park before the San Francisco 49ers and the Atlanta Falcons played what would be the last sporting event at the stadium before it was torn down. San Francisco Giant Willie Mays waves to the fans at Candlestick Park for the last time at the stadium.

Willie Mays waves to the crowd at the last sporting event to take place in Candlestick Park on December 23, 2013 as the San Francisco 49ers played the Atlanta Falcons.


Day Twenty-One – Rhodes – Acropolis of Lindos – Greece – Mediterranean Cruise

I know what you are thinking, “Acropolis of Lindos”, how can this be?  Keith, you have already visited “the Acropolis”, how can there be another one? Turns out the loose translation of Acropolis is, the building on the hill. Of course the most famous “building on hill” is the Acropolis in Athens, Greece which I visited 2 days before. Day twenty-one was to Rhodes, Greece and then a bus ride to the Acropolis of Lindos.

Of course day twenty-one started as most every day on the ship did rising before sunrise and looking for a spectacular view in the early morning light. The great view that morning was the reflection of the sunrise in one of the wind screen windows.

Sunrise refection on Wind screen windowMany of the building were painted White. Not sure why. It looks nice though.

Building painted White with wooden door

You leave the port on the bus which takes you to the Acropolis of Lindos. The buses can’t go down the main road, so you park and walk down the hill to the road that leads up a different hill to the Acropolis.

Climb up the stairs past the tourist shops to the Acropolis of LindosBeautiful wooden doors surrounded by walls painted White

View from inside the Medieval gate of the Acropolis which if my “research” ( looking it up on ) is correct was build sometime before 1317 AD.

Inside the Medieval gate of the Acropolis of Lindos

View of the beach of Lindos from the building on the hill.

View of the bay from the Acropolis of Lindos, GreeceRhodes-Greece-07

The gang poses for a photo with Lindos Beach in the background.

Tourist posing for photo with the Bay behind them.

View of St Paul’s Bay, where it is reported the apostle landed during a storm, or not. For sure it’s St. Paul’s Bay.

St. PaulSunlight steaming through the ancient ruins the make up the Acropolis of Lindos, Greece

Hand painted dishes.

Hand made dishes, Rhodes, GreeceThank goodness there were shops where one could buy stuff you would purchase and then put in a drawer for the rest of your life. One would hope that if you purchased a cat purse you would never show it to another living soul.

Plenty of stuff for the tourists to buy - Rhodes, GreeceSailboat and and about in the blue seas of Rhodes, GreeceI guess they can’t call their ships “Superfast” unless they really are Superfast. red ferry about to leave port - Rhodes, Greece


Day Twenty – Ephesus – Kusadasi – Turkey – Mediterranean Cruise

The twentieth day of the journey was our visit to the ancient ruins at Ephesus in Turkey.

One of the most impressive remains at Ephesus is the Library of Celsus. It was completed in 130 AD. It was later destroyed by several earthquakes and lay in ruins for possibly a thousand years. The facade which you can see in this photo was reconstructed in 1978.

The ancient ruins at Ephesus in Turkey

The Celestyal Olympia with the home port of Valletta, Malta docks at the cruise terminal. Our ship would “park” on the left side.
When googling info about the Celestyal Olympia it was interesting to find the ship had used these different name before, Louis Olympia, Thomson Destiny, Sunbird, and finally the Song of America.

Cruise ship docking at cruise terminal in Kusadasi Turkey

Interesting reviews on for Toros, the First Sea Food Restaurant in Kusadasi, since 1894.

Seafood restaurant in Kusadasi, TurkeyRestored ruins at Ephesus, TurkeySunlight over ruins at Ephesus, Turkey

Who travels thousand of miles by sea and air to take photos of their shoes over a building that is 2,000 years old?

Terraced Houses at Ephesus, Turkey

The Terraced Houses in the ruins of Ephesus. The houses were certainly built for the 1 %ers.

View from above Terraced Houses at Ephesus, Turkey

Nice that the ruins were reconstructed so the tourists could take selfies.

The ancient ruins were rebuilt so people who could take selfies. Sun streams through the marble structure of the library at Ephesus in TurkeyThree thousand year old ruins reconstructed at Ephesus in Turkey

View from the top of The Great Theatre which is claimed to have held 25,000 people back in the day. Even if it only held 10,000 for a show or concert, it was still pretty impressive. 

View from the top of the amphitheater at Ephesus, Turkey

Ephesus was a happening place with many changes of who was in charge and famous visitors. This Ephesus Chronology details many of the comings and goings for the past three thousand years.

View of the amphitheater in Ephesus, Turkey

It was interesting that the warning labels on the cigarettes was quite to the point, smoke and you will die. Yet so many people in Europe did smoke.

The warning label on the Marlboro cigarettes says Smoking kills

Our ship was parked on the right.

Two cruise ships are parked at the cruise terminal in Kusadasi, Turkey


Day Nineteen – Athens – Piraeus – Greece – the Acropolis – Mediterranean Cruise

Day nineteen started with the ship docking in the busy port town of Piraeus, Greece. From there it’s a 30 minute bus ride to the Acropolis in Athens. We have all seen the photos showing the lovely ancient building on the hill and longed to visit the site. This was that day. What you don’t imagine or see in the photos are all the people that are also there with you. Essentially it’s you and 5,000 other people visiting the Acropolis at the same time. The first image in the post shows the stairway leading into and out of the buildings.

The crush of people viewing the siteThere were ships coming and going all day long in the port of Piraeus.

Cruise ships and ferrys pass through the port all day long

You always want to know where you parked the boat in case you get lost. The red arrow on this Google map shows where are cruise ship was parked just outside the cruise terminal.

Google map showing the port area and routes ships use.

When ever I’m in Greece, I always make a point of stopping at Vanos Ship supplies to see the new merchandise. OK, I’ve never been to the place, just liked how the reflections in the glass looking on their building.

Vanos ship supplies in Piraeus GreeceView of the Acropolis without all the other folks that are visiting the site at the same time.

The AcropolisClouds and the Acropolis

When in town, don’t forget to visit the Just Coffee store located at Leof. Andrea Siggrou 338, Kallithea 176 73, Greece.

The sign says they sell just coffee

Helmets, we don’t need no stinking helmets. But they did seem friendly.

Safety laws are somewhat different in Greece than in America

Agios Nikolaos church in Piraeus.

Exterior of the Agios Nikolaos church in Piraeus, Greece

The  Agios Nikolaos church was not on any tour, it just stood out from every 6 or 7 story square building that was the port city of Piraeus and neighboring Athens.  After returning from the Acropolis, I decided to walk a couple blocks over from the terminal area and view the church up close.

Interior of the Agios Nikolaos church in Piraeus, GreeceInterior of the Agios Nikolaos church in Piraeus, Greece

[…] the loose translation of Acropolis is, the building on the hill. Of course the most famous “building on hill” is the Acropolis in Athens, Greece which I visited 2 days before. Day twenty-one was to […]


Day Eighteen – Nafplio Greece – Mediterranean Cruise

As the ship sailed into the harbor outside Nafplio, Greece where we would drop anchor we passed large windmills like those you see hundreds of along Highway 580 on the Altamont pass. It was kind of like being at home driving past the windmills on a large boat. While the fine folks on the ship call the town where we dropped anchor Nafplion, the people that live the like to call it Nafplio. Google seemed to side with the people of the town, and not those from the Holland America cruise line.

Nafplion-Greece-01Sunrise on the windmills outside of Nafplio.

Windmills at sunrise - Greece

Inside the  Treasury of Atreus or Tomb of Agamemnon at the Panagitsa Hill at Mycenae, Greece which was built in 1250 BC.  A google review of the tomb included this line from a youngster visiting the site, “My son said to me: mum I feel like I’m in an Indiana Jones movie”. It did have that feel. 


There was this Australian tourist who was pointing out “interesting” facts about the ceiling in the  Treasury of Atreus.

Australian tourist pointing out the ceilingView from the Fortress Palamidi of Nafplio and our ship anchored in the harbor.

View from Fortress Palamidi of harbor and Holland America cruise ship

Some travelers are adventurous and will try the local cuisine. Not me. A couple days into the cruise after eating dinner on the ship I thought I was getting food poisoning. I wasn’t, just something about the food upset my stomach. You don’t want to get sick on the cruise and say something like, “I’m too sick to leave the ship, but it’s OK, I will see Venice in my next lifetime”.

Menu choices for tourists in Nafplio Greece

The statue is of  Theodoros Kolokotronis in Kolokotronis Park inside the city of Nafplio.

Nafplio, Greece - statue of Theodoros Kolokotronis in Kolokotronis ParkIt was some type of utility box with a painting and  message in English – “relax… have a cigarette”.

The painting on the box says "relax, have a cigarette" in EnglishThe Fortress Palamidi atop the hill above Nafplio which was built by the Venetians during their second occupation of the area from 1686 to 1715.

Fortress Palamidi - Nafplio GreeceNot every port of call has dock space big enough for a cruise ship that holds 3000 people, so you are “tendered” into port. What does tendered mean? It means that you and about 120 other people are crammed into one of those orange life boats shown in the photo below. It also means the ship line will have the tender boat sit there and wait till it’s completely full which of course means it reaches it full potential for heat and humidity.

Tender returning to Holland American cruise line

Bill GeorgeMarch 31, 2016 - 1:21 am

Didn’t know I had any “facts”