World rules changed and the gods were required to check their gear at the door.  Mercury was the last to leave and is said to have made his first footprints in the loamy soil along the lower slopes of Mount Olympus.   Along the way he passed Herakles, stripped of his muscles, desperately trying to uproot a small tree, and Pan, deprived of his pipes, being studiously ignored by a small group of village women as he tried, with little success, to teach himself to whistle.  On and on went Mercury, walking, remarkably, and when he came to a river, instead of speeding over it as he would have formerly, he waited for the ferry with the others.  The prospect that met his newly foreshortened vision was not glamorous.  There was Aphrodite, stripped of all extravagance, laughing it up with a pair of sailors, and Dionysius, whose appalling drunkenness inspired no one.  Nymphs, deprived of their gills, sulked along the bone strewn banks of the river.  Off in the distance he could just see Proteus, standing in a field facing West with his arms wrapped tight around himself.