Athens, WI: The Place Where Time Stood Still
Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Jul 27, Irving Koppel rated it liked it. Unlike its namesake,Athens,Wisconsin is a very small town about in Northern Wisconsin. There they made a life for themselves in the early 's. Ben established a general store from which he earned a comfortable living.
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It was there that they reared four children,three boys and a girl. While there were signs of occasional prejudice,their lives,on the whole,were calm,healthful and productive. The children interacted very well with the Christian children who also attended their very small first through eighth grade school. They studied their lessons and played all the popular games. It was really an idyllic childhood. When the children became teens, and the question of dating arose,the parents,wanting them to retain their faith,moved to Milwaukee.
There one could find numerous Jewish families. The children adjusted well to their learning in the upper grades. The parents were gratified that all the children married persons of the same faith. Still,the family always remembered fondly the lives and friendships they had made in the north woods of Wisconsin.
Dec 14, Kimberly rated it really liked it Shelves: read , iown-on-kindle , topic-memoiressay. I'm not sure why this book has received such low ratings. It isn't rocket science but it IS a well writen piece about the history of a small Wisconsin town and a family that contributed to it.
I lived nearby in Medford for several years and it was fun to read a piece of history of Athens, especially about the early years of the still popular Athens Worlds Fair, and learn more about business owners successful decades ago in Medford. Everyone in central Wisconsin knows all these tiny towns used to I'm not sure why this book has received such low ratings. Everyone in central Wisconsin knows all these tiny towns used to be busy and necessary but too few people get the big picture about how the disappearance of farming and logging has changed the economic outlook for an entire section of the state.
Janice aleskowitch rated it did not like it Aug 11, If the double-treble champions do not make the Champions League group stage, and at half-time in this tie you would make AEK Athens strong favourites for the play-off, it is because someone at Celtic Park hasn't done their job properly. Celtic are short in quality and they should not be.
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They need at least one more creative player and two central defenders. The funds have been there all summer. They are still there. John McGinn, who Rodgers wanted, was confirmed an Aston Villa player 15 minutes before kick-off in Glasgow and that setback along with the lack of replacement for either Stuart Armstrong or Paddy Roberts is why Celtic have at best stood still. Can Celtic still do it? Yes, but as things stand they are heading, probably, to the Europa League. The Green Brigade have crossed a line in the past with their banners but were absolutely spot-on last night.
They asked whether the Champions League were having a laugh; a reference to fourth place teams in England, Spain, Germany and Italy an automatic group stage. The banner of such clubs jumping the queue was a good one. McGregor then played a one-two with Edouard at breakneck speed, the Scotland man took on a shot which needed both hands of Vasiileios Barkas to prevent an opener.
Both teams won and lost the ball in midfield until Rogic took control and superbly sent a cross-field pass to Tierney on the left. He zipped the ball to the foot of McGregor who touched, turned and then beat Barkas with a superb shot. A superb ball before the half hour from Tierney, by now enjoying a ridiculously good evening, was asked to be tapped home but nobody saw the question coming. It was a feature of this 90 minutes. Right, what could Celtic do to fix things? He plays so beautifully and looks so sad I always leave him half a euro or so.
If you see him why not do the same? He is usually there in the daytime. I always keep my change and give it to the musicians in the street. I rarely leave the hotel without a pocket full of change jangling and maybe that is why the flower girls find me so easily. One thing to keep in mind is that these people are not bums. Some of them are classically trained and performed in major symphonies in their home countries but have been exiled by war, poverty or other circumstances and now make a living entertaining in the streets of Athens. If you listen you will hear a very high level of musicianship, and giving half a euro for a few hundred notes is a bargain.
They say that one of the kids who sang opera with his father on Ermou was discovered and sent to a well known music conservatory. There are a few Russian and Hungarian violin players wandering around who will astound you. Of course there are those who play terribly and just come to bother you so you give them money to go away. How you handle them is up to you. The Cine Paris , the best outdoor movie theater in Athens.
Of course you haven't come to Greece to go to the movies but if you are not ready for a wild night out and just want to sit back and be entertained, you are in for a treat. Almost all the movies are in English with Greek subtitles and when you go inside you will discover that the theater is on the roof with a view of the Acropolis.
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Some nights you can see the colors change during the sound and light show. There is a bar and you can have a brandy and watch your favorite stars in the shadow of the Parthenon. You can find anything from the most popular contemporary films to posters from the sixties.
Even if you don't buy you can spend an hour browsing through them all and in the end you will probably find something you have to have. As you continue down Kydatheneon street you will pass a gold shop, a tourist shop and a gelato-ice-cream store. But it is more than a liquor store. It was the oldest distillery in Athens.
Go inside and admire the old barrels full of spirits and the colored bottles that line the walls up to the ceiling. Brettos has been sold but the new owners have tried to keep it as traditional as they can while at the same time making the bar a more comfortable place to hang out, installing air-conditioning for example.
Then when it got sold I tried it and did not like it that much and began buying from Angelo the Ouzo King down the street. But the last time I went in I met the owners, Pavlos and Despina and sampled their double and triple distilled ouzo and gave it very high marks. If you like to shop and stroll, make a right on Adrianou.
Tourist shop after jewelry store after T-shirt store and then repeated again and again. Everybody who comes to Greece walks up this street and buys postcards, worry beads komboloi , ashtrays, icons, you name it. There are also street venders selling nuts and refugees from what was once Yugoslavia and the Soviet Union selling the strange toys made from flour and balloons or offering to write your name on a grain of rice for a few euro.
If you are still shopping for Olympic paraphernalia you have a lot to choose from. He may have a few left. He has some of the more tasteful shirts in the Plaka. Some of the t-shirts on display in the Plaka make you wonder who on earth would buy them. But George seems to have some integrity with the shirts he sells. Not that I have owned a watch since I left mine hanging on a tree in the rain when I was 12 years old, but my daughter feels like she has to have a new one every year and can spend hours in the store.
If you walk up Kekropis Street which is right next to the T-shirt Shop and look on your left you will find the small workshop of Dimitris Koutelieris who makes furniture and art out of dismantled ships, houses and other recycled material. Though most items like tables, chairs, dressers etc are so big that they will have to be shipped back there are a few smaller pieces that you can carry back with you.
Even if you are not buying it's a neat place to visit. Its at The Byzantino Jewelery Store is on your left at next to the ice-cream shop. This is where my wife buys her jewelery from because the prices are so low and the work is so good. My wife is a goldsmith. They work primarily with 22K gold in a variety of styles, of which my favorites are those that are based on the ancient Greek designs or exact copies.
This is one of the few jewelry stores that is artist-owned. In other words they make their own pieces rather than buy from a factory. If you are looking for something beautiful that will gain value then shop here. Prices of their jewelry vary from a few euros to a few thousand but you won't find better quality in the Plaka or the islands.
Even in these hard economic times, maybe especially now. Watch the price of gold as it continuously goes up and you will realize what makes it the gift that keeps on giving. Say you buy a piece of 22k gold jewelry, maybe a copy of an ancient Greek or Byzantine piece. As the price of gold rises so does the value of your jewelry to the point where in the not too distant future the value of your piece, just by weight of the gold will be more than what you paid for the entire piece, gold, labor, overhead and all.
Of course most people buy jewelry for sentimental reasons or because they appreciate the beauty of it. But in this case it is practical because if the economy collapses you have gold! So you are not just buying something beautiful, you are making an investment in a limited commodity that should gain value.
I have to admit it makes sense. Further down the street is the shop of Angelo the Ouzo King who prides himself on having more varieties of ouzo than any shop in Athens.
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If you can't afford gold then ouzo is probably the next best thing for getting through hard economic times. Angelo is a pretty cool guy and has had a number of tourist businesses in the Plaka over the years and has watched it go through its changes. The ouzo and traditional products is a good direction for him but what I like about Angelo is the way he will pull me off the street and say "Matthew.
You must try this newest ouzo I have found.
It comes from Serres in Northern Greece and it is fantastic. He is always right. Sometimes I will recommend an obscure ouzo I tasted somewhere and often the next time I come into the store there it is. Last time my brother returned from Athens he pulled out a bottle of Baba Tzim, a gift from Angelo. Who says having a website does not have fringe benefits? These are the more obscure brands you won't find in most other shops.
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The ouzo that we connoisseurs prefer. Apostegmeno means pure distilled. That's what you want. Ask about raki, tsikoudia and tsipuro too. They are like ouzo without the anise flavor. Continue down Adrianou until you come to Remember , the first punk-fashion store in Greece and an institution. Run by designer Dimitris Tsounatos photo this boutique has been visited by your favorite rock stars, actors, fashion designers and models and there is a photo album full of them to prove it.
If you are looking for unique designs in clothes, jewelry and art, or if you just want to see something different from the tourist shops that line Adrianou then stop in at 79 Adrianou. You may find your favorite band in an original design or you may find an original design that is so unique you will have to have it like the one I bought that I am not permitted to wear because my wife says it draws attention to me and makes me look like a giant graffiti covered pumpkin.
I don't let my wife tell me what I can and can't buy. Unfortunately she won't let me wear it out of the house. I am thinking of just having it framed. Visit Dimitris. He is a classic Plaka character of a bygone age and punk lives on in his shop. Heavy-metal too.
In fact when all the punk and heavy metal bands come to play Athens they head straight for Remember so you may run into one of your heroes. Turn left up Hill Street or Chill street, depending on which of the two street signs you look at and follow the street as it becomes Scholiou and then Epiharmou Street.
Stop and look straight ahead and up. It's the walls of the Acropolis and below it, where Epiharmou connects with Tripodon is an ouzerie known locally as Kouklis but the name on the sign is Scholarchion. You will find in Athens that some places are known to the locals by the name of the owner, rather than the actual name. You will see a building with a packed balcony and windows. Sit down and have a drink.
Their specialty is flaming sausages and trout but most people come here to drink the day away. The food is decent and some travel-writers spend hours here thinking they have stumbled upon the real thing but actually a more authentic place with better food is To Kafeneon just below with its tables slanted so precariously that there is at least one food accident a night.
Very cozy indoors in the winter with a fireplace and a warming glass of tsipura and their collection of mezedes from northern Greece. You won't see many tourists but at least one copy of the menu is in English. If you watch that episode you will see me in it. Next door to Kouklis is a fancy ice-cream and milk shop called Amalfi. If you have a sweet tooth I encourage you to go inside. The small church next to Kouklis is St Nicholas and is one of the most popular of the old churches in Athens and a great place to go if you are in Athens for midnight mass on Easter Sunday.
If you cross the parking lot and go up the steps and take a right you will come to another of my favorite restaurants, Psaras fish taverna, under new ownership but a nice place for a meal away from the crowds. This part of the Plaka is mainly residential but also archaeological, which means you can buy a house here for a lot of money but if you happen to do renovations or an addition and you discover an ancient wall or even worse, a column from a temple, or a load of pottery, coins or other artifacts, the Archaeological society will stop your work and can hold you up for years.
Anafiotika: The Island Village in the Plaka. Anafiotika is the cluster of small houses built on the slopes of the Acropolis above the Plaka. It's like being on a Greek Island. It's named Anafiotika because the original inhabitants were stone masons who came from the island of Anafi to build Athens in the mid 19th century. Just continue up the steps between Kouklis and the Byzantine church of St Nicholas next to it.