Monday, January 28, 2013

Three Degrees of Separation (Athens, part V)

Many of the non-Iowans I know have heard me say that the so-called “seven degrees of separation” tends to be reduced to two or three degrees among Iowans.  I experienced this again on Saturday evening in Athens.  Walking back to my hotel, I noticed a restaurant just around the corner that looked promising.  I looked it up online and found some very positive reviews.  I also learned that it has been owned by the same Greek family for thirty years.

An hour later I went back to the restaurant and was greeted by a woman about my age who spoke very good English.  She asked me if I had walked by earlier, because she remembered my gold and black umbrella.  She explained that they cook a handful of dishes each day from which I could choose.  I walked up to the counter to survey the options, made my choice, and sat down.  While I waited, I overheard her mention to another English-speaking table that she was American.  She came back to my table a bit later and we started chatting.  She asked me where I was from, and after explaining that I was currently teaching in Sofia, I told her that I was from Iowa.  She laughed.  It turns out she is from Fort Madison.  Her parents now live in West Point.  She and her husband operate the restaurant with his parents, who have indeed been serving food in that spot since the 1980s. 

The food, by the way, was excellent and I would recommend the restaurant.  It is called Kati Alo and is located directly behind the Acropolis Museum.  See a review here, halfway down.  I was also very impressed with the food at Tzitsikas & Mermingas (The Cicada and Ant) where I ate with Aias last night, as well as Scholarhio Ouzeri Kouklis which I mentioned I had lunch in a previous post.

Incidentally, it was announced on Sunday that RAGBRAI XLI will end in Fort Madison this year.  I’ve already let the folks at Kati Alo know.

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