Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Agrigento












Tuesday, Jason and I drove to the south of Sicilia to the ancient town of Agrigento. They have an incredible archeological park there called The Valley of the Temples. This area was first built up by the Greeks in about 450 B.C. and later taken over by the Romans.

We visited the beautiful main three temples of Hercules, Concord and Juno. Concord is the best preserved thanks to the efforts of a Catholic Bishop Saint Gregorio who preserved it against further decay. Because of his efforts, he is now the Patron Saint of Conservators. FESTIVAL ANYONE?

The statue that looks like the Michelin Man is actually one of 38 figures which helped support the roof of one of the Temples with each standing between the fluted, Doric columns.

Again, the great things about visiting  Europe at this time of the year are the cool weather, no humidity and zero crowds. There were maybe 150 people maximum in the entire park when we visited today!

If you get the chance, go to our QB  Margaret-Jason's website, he got some incredible shots of the ruins.

At the end of the long day we were both tired and very hungry. We did something I swore never to do in Italy, we ate at the Agrigento McDonald's. If you recall either the book or movie, "Alive", members of an Argentine soccer team are flying over the Andies Mountains when their plane crashes. The survivors are eventually forced to eat the remains of their friends and family members who perished in order to survive until eventually being rescued. Our motivation at McDonald's was similar to their experience, irrational but necessary under the conditions.

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