I would like to thank the MPG Bursary Committee for granting me the funding which enabled me to go on this trip; without this generous assistance my involvement would not have been possible. I am extremely grateful.
Another big thank you goes to everyone involved in organising and leading the trip, from MPG people to our driver Yiorgos; it wouldn’t have been as enjoyable without their hospitality, generosity and humour.
A final message of thanks goes to the other trip participants, for being wonderful, joyous company and putting up with an over-enthusiastic youngster for a whole week. Some people were as unforgettable as the plants, you made my first time in Greece one I will never forget.
Wednesday 8th November
Weather: Rain, 16 ℃
We landed in Athens in the evening and were greeted by our friendly coach driver Yiorgos. Once on the coach it didn’t feel like Greece, darkness and rain followed us on the two-hour drive south to Nafplio in the Peloponnese. Most of the journey was on the motorway, it felt like we were still near London on the M25. There was a brief stop to look down over the Corinth Canal – even at night it was still impressive with the 86-metre-high sides lit up, stretching as far as the eye could see.
A late dinner was waiting in Hotel Agamemnon, the wine was welcomed as much as the food… Heather Martin greeted everyone and explained the itinerary for the following day: a free morning for people to spend as they wished, with the afternoon spent travelling further south to Sparta. I met my roommate for the trip, Ilona, and fell asleep instantly – it had been a long day.