I have been extremely happy to be in Greece for a part of the winter. It is a completely different place than what I know in the hot summer months. Previously the latest I had been to Greece was October and the earliest May. Everything is extremely green and vibrant. The days can be cold and rainy but when the sun comes it is as beautiful as a summer day. The cloudy days have their own beauty as well and no matter what you can always find the Greek people outside on patios and coffee shops. It is wonderful.
The academic life of Athens is incredible! There is a constant circuit of lectures and events and you never know who you will run into that is either living here or flying in for a short or long time. I was able to attend the open meeting of the American School of Classical Studies and attend the keynote lecture given by Jeremy Rutter - entitled "Tsoungizan Surprises" which was live streamed and you can see here.
Work here has been exciting and diverse. I first worked at the current excavations at the Palace of Nestor in Pylos where work is being done to prepare for the building of a new roof. I was in the field drawing sections and trench plans -- something I haven't done in YEARS. It was cool outside at times and rained - but the scenery was gorgeous and I have never seen better conditions for drawing stratigraphy! (i.e. minus the blazing sun and dry soil of the summer!) Then I travelled north of Athens to draw metal objects and lithics in the Atalanti Museum from the site of Mitrou. These objects take such a long time - it is great to get a head start on them before the busy schedule in the summer!
And Spring is definitely arriving!!!