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ITHAKA ON THE HORIZON: A Greek-American Journey



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05 January 2008


Theophilos Xenos

wow, Stavros, you brought back memories! My grandfather -- now long gone -- was a spectator at the Athens stadium during Londos's big bout in 1934 against Kola Kowriani. He always spoke excitably of that night, although I was too young to have registered all the details. Grandpa kept some old clippings on that bout and used to read them to me; again, I was too young to completely comprehend the archaic Greek language used by newspapermen in the 1930s. Londos was undoubtedly a great model figure for a past generation of Greeks.



That he was. It seems that past generations of Greeks did not lack for suitable role models. Pavlos Melas, Ion Dragoumis, Penelope Delta come to mind. Then again that was before Greeks lost their self-confidence in who they were.

BTW, I have been reading your posts with great interest, just haven't had anything worthwhile to say about the subject matter YET. I sent you an email but it seems it didn't get to you. I will try again tonight (East coast time) using your new email address.

Savvas Tzionis

I don't know about losing their self confidence.

They have just had a massive earthquake, and virtually no damage!!

Years of building earthquake proof buildings has had its rewards.

Of course, the benefits are completely undervalued because it was a matter of 'not losing', rather the more spectacular "Win'.

Well done Greece.



There is no doubt that Greece has made its share of progress economically and in terms of its standard of living. Perhaps some of us are looking at the glass as half empty rather than half full.

Standard of living, however, does not always equate to quality of life. The survival of buildings after an earthquake says nothing about the resilience of the people living in them.

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  • Keep Ithaka always in your mind. Arriving there is what you're destined for. But don't hurry the journey at all. Better if it lasts for years, so you're old by the time you reach the island, wealthy with all you've gained on the way, not expecting Ithaka to make you rich. Ithaka gave you the marvelous journey. Without her you wouldn't have set out. She has nothing left to give you now. And if you find her poor, Ithaka won't have fooled you. Wise as you will have become, so full of experience, you'll have understood by then what these Ithakas mean. C. P. Cavafy


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