The perfect square

In the town of Nafplio, there lies a perfect square.

No, I don't mean 9 or 16 or anything; Pythagoras & co got that stuff cased millennia ago, and anyway I've had enough of mathematics for a few months post-GMAT, I just mean a village square, lined with cafes and museums and shops, with just the right vibe to make a planned hike uphill seem non-vital.

It's called the Plateia Syntagmatos – there's a square by this name in every town in Greece. On one side the Palamidi fortress, an outpost of Venice when it started its franchising arm, sits atop a hill studded with steep stone steps and streets layered most of the way up like strata in a cleft rockface. And on the other side, the berry-blue Med with a couple of 100ft yachts taking up most of it.

(I took some shots of the boats from my balcony earlier, and overheard my neighbour say inside her room in German “looks like we have a paparazzi in the hotel!” Well, it IS rather an impressive lens. Seriously, if any tabloid editors are reading and are interested in snaps of whoever's on the 'Loretta Anne' and 'Geosand' yachts, give me a call. Can't make out his face from 200m, but on the 'Geosand' is a shirtless guy in yellow trousers who seems to be in charge.)

Yes, Plateia syntagmatos is the perfect square; scenic and happening. I think I'll head back later for a bite.

The agony and the arteries

Transport terminii are where you see a city's soul.

The bureacracy to navigate, the crowds, the undercurrent of uncertainty. They're also the best places to indulge my 'jason bourne' image: nobody knows who you are or what you're up to, whether you're adrift or purposeful. In a station, you can be whoever you want to be. Not a bad deal for an 11 euro ticket.

I've slept next to the sleepers in Asian railways, watched in fascination at the way Egyptians simply jump down onto tracks to reach other platforms, slumbered in Greyhound stations the breadth of the USA fending off those society left behind. Long distance stations, especially, mark off the paragraphs between different stages of life, much as this Greek odyssey is doing with mine.

Stations are cool.

They also allow you to write blogs that are TOTALLY UP THEMSELVES.