We'd originally planned to spend longer in Greece. In the end, Croatia and Montenegro got the higher priority. However, Athens was our stepping-off point for Jordan, so we had to go there anyway, if only for a day. We'd found a hotel within walking distance of the Acropolis, and didn't plan to do anything more than going there.
From above, Athens looked like a concrete puddle, spread thinly over a wide plain and lapping disinterestingly against the surrounding foothills. The trip from the airport to the city centre was long, and hot. The bus stopped well short of its destination, the streets ahead closed off.
As we reoriented ourselves and started walking, we found the swelling sound of an angry crowd the reason for the closure. Apparently the protest, right in front of parliament, was in reaction to State censorship in the universities. Police from that same State were in evidence, lining the streets in their riot gear, blue buses parked across the roads in a barricade against the crowd. We couldn't see the protesters, but we could hear them. The armoured row of riot cops on our side of the buses were ready to go. A solitary cop carrying a gas canister walked the line, spraying it under the bus barricade at intervals. We got a whiff as we went past and it caught in our throats, stripping them open. So nice to know the Greek police care for the sinus health of the citizens they're protecting. Stopping nasal congestion and such.