One advantage of going to Greece in April is having the beaches to oneself. Fabulous sunshine although the sea was rather cool. En route from Lefkada, I stopped at Delphi, the omphalos or "navel" of the ancient world where two eagles dispatched by Zeus met, thereby officially establishing the geographical centre of the world. The oracle there, pronounced by a priestess in the Temple of Apollo, was consulted by people far and wide from 1100BC to 300AD and her words were paid for handsomely with elaborate offerings. The bronze statue of the charioteer was presented with full chariot and horses (none of which have survived to the same extent) by Galon, tyrant of Syracuse in Sicily in 478BC as thanks for the oracle's advice which enabled him to defeat the Carthaginians in the battle of Himera in 480BC. Not all the oracles at that time were so propitious, however, or perhaps it was because they were generally rather vague and open to wide interpretation. Anyway, when the Athenians asked for advice in the face of the Persian advance, they were told to trust in the "wooden wall" which they took to mean the navy. They therefore evacuated the civilian population, leaving only the treasurers and priestesses on the Acropolis to guard the possessions of the gods. As a result, the Persians marched in and burnt down the city. The Parthenon which we know and love today was built thirty years later.