999 Steps up the Wall

Trip Start May 22, 2009
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Trip End Feb 16, 2010


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Flag of Greece  ,
Saturday, November 21, 2009

999 steps up the wall, 999 steps
If you should slip and happen to fall
They’ll be no more climbing on steps up the wall

One thing that makes me laugh touring some of these ancient sights is the total LACK of concern about safety.  Old chipped rock steps which are far to narrow and steep with no handrail to speak of.  Single straight flights of 30-40 steps (while the limit in Canada is 12 spaced with landings). Watched this poor man scared of heights struggle with his desire to see the castle but, unable to go up.  Wheel chair accessible?  No possible way!  But still, this was a popular outing.  Being there on a Saturday afternoon it was nice to see the ‘local tourists’:  families with children, couples, etc.  

Nafplio is supposed to be one of the most romantic harbors in Greece with it’s bayed in beach flanked on either side by enormous castles high up among the rocks.  High indeed.  With each rest break it was incredible to see the city and hillside around revealing itself.  Inside, there were several separate Bastions belonging to different people.  Each unique in it’s own way, and joined by more stairs.  Our goal was UP.  So we kept climbing until we found the topmost bastion with unobstructed 360 degree views. 

This is the type of castle that didn’t need to worry about fortification.  Just leave the stairs and the doors wide open.  By the time the enemy reaches the doors, they’ll just fall down in exhaustion.  I was thinking how much doing errands would suck.  ‘Honey, I need some eggs!  Can you run out and get some?‘

Without knowing the full history of the place it was difficult to fully appreciate it.  But it was wonderful to walk around and impressive to see, and a nice change to be able to climb down at the end. 
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Comments

lindsayholmes
lindsayholmes on

I bet those stairs were nothing for your bicycle legs, the invaders should have rode bikes there instead of horses!

I have to disagree with the "lack of safety" there. I think Canadians are conditioned to expect warnings and signs and ropes around dangerous things, whereas in most other countries there isn't as much protection so people are conditioned to asses the danger of their surroundings and think for themselves.

I love how you can just inspect things that are hundreds/thousands of years old! (Right up close with no handrails!) Thailand is really great for that , there's just temples everywhere you look, all of Angkor is like that as well. It's so neat to climb stairs that have been climbed thousands of times.

2totango
2totango on

I agree, Lindsay. Making everything 'idiot proof' almost breeds idiots.

One of the saddest places I found was Johnson's Canyon. Full of paved roads and handrails with signs every 10 feet that say 'Danger, you could fall off the cliff if you get too close to the edge"

Really??? Thank goodness there was a sign to warn me...

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