The eternal flame and a total eclipse of the sun

Olympos Travel Blog

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On my last night in Olympos we made the climb up to Chimera, the Eternal Flame. My fever came back quite strong, according to Tamara, I only felt so very very cold. I wore nearly all the clothes I had, and borrowed Jamie's jacket on top of that. It was so hard climbing up the mountain side, even after half a day spent sleeping, but Tamara kindly helped me and we reached the flame together. Actually it wasn't a single flame, but rather the entire mountain side was covered in small flames coming up out of the earth. They are relatively small now, but thousands of years ago they were so strong that the ancient Greek mariners used them to navigate by. I guess for us it doesn't seem too unusual to see flame coming from nowhere, but for the ancient Greeks? Surely magic was then the simplest explanation.


After Olympos we drove to Kas on the Mediterranean coast. Our first day in Kas was okay, we sailed to the edge of Kevoka Island to see an ancient sunken Lycian city. There wasn't too much to see (pretty much nothing actually), but we had a nice day lounging around in the sun on the deck of the boat on the Mediterranean Sea. Andy, Michelle and I went for a swim and it was very cold. Our second day in Kas and we had a total solar eclipse. I kept on looking up, expecting to see the moon gliding towards the sun, but nearly being in the total line, there was no light to reflect off our side. There was no sign of what was coming, even during the partial eclipse you couldn't see the indent of the moon without the thick visor. A pre-industrial viewer would have felt nothing until the three-quarter eclipse, when the day became a little bit paler, and a little bit more chilly. Still, nothing terribly unusual, and then the moon snapped in place, and the soon was replaced by a ring of fire around a black hole and a sunrise ringed the horizon (I was surprised that sunrise/sunset was still on the horizon...). Three minutes of blackness, then the sun was blazing again. No wonder people invented religion, until science becomes quite sophisticated, you would have to invoke the supernatural to explain such an amazing event. If the sun can disappear, then why not anything?

It only confuses me that people still believe this now that we do have simpler explanations...

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photo by: findmeabeach