Six Hours in Greece

Grandpa and Asher getting on the boatAsher with her passport ready to cross into Greece

Greece is the home of many ancient civilizations, so it has many artifacts. So many that if you dig a hole in the areas not close to cities, you’ll probably find one. On our 6 hour visit to the Greek island of Samos, we went to one museum, a grocery store, and sat on some stairs and talked about politics. In the museum there were two exhibits that really caught my eye. The first one was a big, huge statue called a kourus. It was a couple thousand years old and found in an area that once was the garden of an ancient civilian. It’s about 5 meters tall (15 feet), missing both feet, one just above the shin and one right above the knee.

Kourros the largest statue from ancient greece

The second one was 248 gold coins, 2 gold rings, and a pair of golden earrings all found in one jug. If you’ve read my previous coin posts, then you know how much I love coins. There was no information about them, so I had to ask a guy who worked there. He told me that they were Byzantine and that they were found on the shore of the island. I have a Byzantine coin that dad got me in Cappadocia along with some Greek and Roman ones. We’re still debating if they’re fake or real, but they aren’t gold. The last thing about the coins is that they were all different, sort of like the terracota warriors. They all had soldiers on one side with different faces and beards, and on the other side there was a cross.

Ancient coins all found in a jar on Samos

I got real excited at the thought of finding something like that and how much fun it would be to take them home, and what a great addition to my coin collection it would be. But then mom shot it right out of the sky. She told me that if I didn’t find it on my property, then I couldn’t keep it. After we left the museum, I was on a mission to get euro coins. There’s a 2 euro, 1 euro, 50 cents, 20 cents, 10 cents, 5 cents, 2 cents, and a 1 cent. To my surprise all the countries that use the euro have different coins. They’re the same size but have different designs! I always thought that all the euro coins were the same, and that they replaced all the coins I could have collected if there was no euro. But I guess it’s not that bad if each country can have their own set. Another surprise is that all the euro coins can be used in any country in the EU. So when we were in Greece, I got some Netherlands euro coins and French ones as well. A really funny thing though is that after 6 hours in Greece, I had more euro coins than I had Turkish coins. So now I’m finding and buying bunches of old Turkish coins since Turkey has had so many different kinds of coins over the past 60 years. Well, gotta go find some more!

Time to leave Samos and head back to TurkeyBack on a Turkish boat, headed to Turkey

(Note from Mom: I hate to be the one to “shoot things out of the sky,” but poor Mac had Schliemann-like visions of making a grand discovery and hauling his loot home. We had to inform him of the laws regarding trespassing and the removal of ancient artifacts from their countries of origin. We may not be able to find a pot of golden treasure, but we’ll keep helping him build his coin collection by legal means.)

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4 thoughts on “Six Hours in Greece

  1. I found your blog after watching you all on Oprah. My husband and I have four children as well, and have really enjoyed following your adventures.
    I didn’t know that the Euro was different in different countries, either. I’m glad that you still have a legal means to your coin collection!

  2. McKane,
    I’m with you, dude. I love collecting coins from other countries. But i was really bummed when they started the euro because each country lost their own identity as far as coins go. It’s still fun that some have held out, like England and Switzerland.

    Ask your dad to get you a bunch of 5-pound coins :)

  3. Hi Mckane,

    ok so here’s the thing, Lenny says in his comment that we lost our identity, i do not agree, because as you now know, they’re all different, so that means each country has it’s own coin identity, but same money, and let me tell it’s the greatest, being able to travel around europe without having the concern of changing money to that country’s coin.
    Dont know if I made myself clear, but right now I’ve got some change here, and I have portuguese, spanish and some others I do not know (eheheh sorry I’m not a coin lover like you :) )and I think it’s really cool, cause just like you guys, this coins travel a lot ahahahaha if you need any coins for your collection, just ask, I’ll send some for you
    eheheheh cya***

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