If you’re following my sagas, I will first wrap up a couple of loose ends, and then tell you about my recent adventure.
In my last post, I told the story at length about my battery challenge. Short summary of the conclusion: the battery arrived and MacGyver installed it while I was sleeping. If you want all the myriad details, take a look at the previous blog entry titled "Battery Life" on this page. Bottom line: happy ending, and my laptop has a battery once more.
Second loose end: Thanksgiving. I have asked my husband to help me give a nod to Thanksgiving every year even if we are abroad by making it possible for me to consume a bit of turkey. So Robin roasted a turkey leg and served it with mashed potatoes and gravy, and also produced roasted brussels sprouts that were to die for. It was a lovely feast, and the symbolic nod to Thanksgiving was made—which I especially appreciate since I have so much to be thankful for.
On the Saturday after Thanksgiving… we finally went out sightseeing. We ambled down the main promenade of Paphos and visited the UNESCO World Heritage site: Paphos Archeological Park.
The description states: “The Paphos Archaeological Park includes areas and monuments from prehistoric eras until medieval times. The park includes 5 Roman houses with famous mosaic floors showing scenes from Greek mythology.”
A tour bus disgorged a whole crowd of people at the entrance, and we decided to follow them and imitate their itinerary. They vanished into a building named The House of Dionysos. (Dionysos has been showing up a lot in my life recently!) We promptly followed them.
After shutterbugging extensively we left the House of Dionysos and wandered toward some ruins where we encountered an ancient odeon (2nd century) that was in fine shape and still used today. It was so nice that we enjoyed our lunch there.
Next we were treated to the ruins of an asklepion. An asklepion is essentially a hospital—a medical center—with one important difference: it was ancient! (2nd century). The asklepion was named for Asclepius, the ancient Greek god of healing and medicine, and considered to be his temple.
Asclepius was revered both in ancient Greece and in Rome. According to legend, he was given birth by a mortal woman and was an ordinary man despite the fact that Apollo was considered to be his father. Young Asclepius was raised by the centaur Chiron. Whilst practicing the art of healing, Asclepius reached such heights that he could even raise the dead. Thanks to this exceptional talent for healing, he was resurrected after his own death and awarded immortality, becoming a demi-god.
Characteristic of asclepions was the practice of incubatio, also known as “temple sleep.” By this process patients would go to sleep in Asclepius’ temple with an expectation of being visited by Asclepius or one of his healing children in a dream. During this nocturnal event, they were instructed how to cure their ailment. If they awakened without being visited by a deity, they reported their dream to a temple priest. The priest would interpret their dream and prescribe a cure. So dreaming was an important facet of healing in this era, and still is in Jungian psychology.
From there, we marched off on a fool’s errand to find an early Christian basilica, but the map was useless and we ended up going down several blind alleys. My long skirt kept getting caught on thorn bushes (5x!), and we became hot and tired. We decided to head for the exit and return another day for all the parts we missed.
On the way out, we came across yet another ruin: The Castle of Saranda Kolones. This was a Byzantine castle whose name means “Forty Columns” due to a large number of granite columns preserved on the site. It was built in the 7th century A.D. to protect the port and city of Nea Pafos (Paphos) from Arab raids, and it remained in use until 1223 when it was destroyed by an earthquake.
After circumambulating the castle for a while, we decided we needed some ice cream, so off we went to enjoy some cool refreshment and recover from our exertions in the 70-degree sun.
I’m still working with my young client on career coaching, and I daresay he’s surprised by how easy, informative, and insightful the process is. If you’re wondering about career matters yourself, get in touch! I’d love to help you find the best fit for you too.
-Dr. Vicky Jo