Last evening I took a walk. I walked straight down a street, block by block, until it got dark and I turned around to head back to our apartments.

I learned that our apartment is not in the middle of nowhere – as was previously declared by some of my colleagues – and that there are dozens of stores, restaurants and street vendors in the 1 to 2 mile radius of our temporary home. Every so often I wandered into a store selling books, candy or miscellaneous goods.

Every time I embarrassed myself.

It seems that the several hours devoted to learning Greek completely escape me every time someone speaks to me in the language. They just look at me and I forget even the simplest words. I forget the word for “hello.” I forget the word for “English.” I forget how to speak English.

I hope these instincts fade and that my fears subside so that I may actually be able to communicate with the people of Thessaloniki.

But, on the bright side, I found this really cool and picturesque church.