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F + 12 : Samos - A Place of Creative Innovation

Ferry was leaving today at 8 am. We were told to be at 7 am at the gate. Seems some marketing guy got overenthusiastic. The ferry from Kusudasi to Samos was fully booked, but ours was almost empty. Checking in and passport control took 5 min. The Greek in Samos managed to take a bit longer but even here we passed after 10 min. We expected far worse!

The Casa dell' Arte at 7 am - She was our home for the last 2 Weeks - wonderful Experience

Our new boat, the Queen of Datca, sailed into Pythagorio harbor exactly as we arrived by taxi. By 13.30 pm everybody was on board. The next chapter of our adventure started.

The Queen of Datca, our home for the next two Weeks, in the harbour of Pythagorio

Pythagorio is Samos’ old capital and probably 3’000 years old. The town became wealthy in the 6th century BC. Its massive town walls are amazing and its 1 km long aqueduct tunnel the first in its kind. Chiseled from both sides by hand, it is testimony to the advanced degree of geometry the builders mastered and the quality of their masonry. Impressive. No wonder old Samos became home to Pythagoras, the man who gave us trigonometry and whom we met last year already. He spent the second half of his life in Cortone in Calabria or Magna Grecia at the time.

Flags are up for Week Three of our Adventure

Pythagoras was not the only ancient celebrity who lived in Samos. Aristarchus (310 – 230 BC), the man who first proposed a heliocentric model which placed the sun at the center of our solar system, lived here too. So did Eupalinos, the engineer who built the 1’000 meters long tunnel that supplied Samos with water – it was a break-through achievement in engineering. Let’s not forget the philosopher Epicurus who lived between Teos and Samos (I talked about him yesterday), the fabulist Aeosop who’s fables we still read today and Mandrocles, the engineer who built the bridge over the Bosporus for Darius, the Persian King.

Bust of Aesop who is said to have been a slave in Samos

Who does not remember his fableof "The Hare and

the Tortoise" or "The Fox and the Hedgehog"?

There must have been something special about Samos that made all these people possible. It was certainly wealth. But Samos also must have been a free society which was able to attract and keep creative and innovative people. Samos must have had a culture where freedom of speech, freedom of research and freedom of movement wee just normal. I guess people came here because the place had a reputation for being a centre of creativity, openness to new ideas and being cool. Places and towns which offer this today still thrive – am not surprised.

View on Pythagoraio from the South - we will stay in this Bay for our first Night

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