Yassoo! As I begin my third week abroad, I have been learning common Greek phrases in order to facilitate talking to people here. I am currently in Athens, and throughout this trip our modes of transportation are essentially always changing. Most times in order to get around with such a large class size, we take a bus from location to location. I actually really enjoy doing this as I still get to see all of Greece as we drive through the country, and I feel as though I am still gaining meaningful experience. As we drive, I see breathtaking scenery, such as mountains, oceans, farmland, and seas of olive trees. We also get an inside look into both smaller villages and bustling cities. Other forms we have utilized include the Metro in Athens, trams, cabs, and the bus systems. While we have only done these a few times, it does remind me a lot of Pitt in a way. At Pitt I am constantly using the busses, so it was relatively easy to understand the way their transportation systems are organized. My friends and I also use uber quite frequently at school, so using cabs was essentially very similar.
Regarding our commute, I really liked the fact we have many options in how we would want to get somewhere. If we wanted to spend less money, and did not mind a long duration, we would use the trams or busses. Contrasting to that, if we were more in a rush, we would tend to use cabs. There were not many things I dislike about the modes of transportation here, but one I particular would potentially be safety. Pick pocketing does seem to be a large issue in major cities, especially Athens, so I have just made sure to be careful and cautious with my belongings. Language barriers have been a little bit of a challenge as well, but I do not mind it at all. It has been a very interesting test to adjust, but I really enjoy talking to people here for help or trying to figure it out with my friends!
If I were to give advice to other students travelling abroad to Greece, many would be reiterations of what I have mentioned earlier in this post. I would recommend over and over again to ask someone who lives in Greece for help if you need it, as I have never had an unhelpful experience doing so. Travel with groups! It is safer and a lot of fun.