Tag Archives: Nameday
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Operating Instructions

25 Jan
I went house hunting with Amy last week.  We started out in Vrysses and meandered back into the hills behind the village into what was a charming, in the crumbly old stone stone sort of way, small village/hamlet.  The house there had excellent views of the mountains and surrrounding land, a swimming pool and nice vibe.  This would be Amy’s winning pick!
The next house was somewhere behind the hills of Giorgoupoli.  The owner met us outside, a tall thin man in his early 40’s who spoke pretty decent English.  He had converted his grandfathers country house into a more modernized version of what it had once been-not much.  There were some beds placed helter skelter, a giant loom dominating one corner of the second “bedroom”.  In case Amy wanted to weave a rug?  It was very haphazard looking.  Outside there was a small plot of land.   He proceeded to explain to Amy that  the 7 or so chickens that were pecking away at the grass were included in the price of rent and if she wanted to have fresh milk he would be willing to throw in a goat at no extra cost.  Hmmmm, I’m not sure that’s exactly what she had in mind but ok.  We putted around and up the mountains through light drizzles of rain and bursts of sun coming through the clouds to the cute village of Vamos.  The house was no great shakes but the garden was something out of The Hobbit.  It was brimming with lush green plants and bright pink and red geraniums.  A bed of clover covered the ground.  Buttercup flirted playfully with all the greenery adding splashes of yellow to the rich emerald carpet below.  It was very magical.  Our last stop brought us to a village called Maxeri (which I kept pronouncing like the word knife-haha this towns name is knife-but was informed otherwise)  perched high up on a sort of jagged edge of mountain at once both charming and frightening.  This little nook of a house also reminded me of The Hobbit and the ceilings were high enough only for a Hobbit to reside in comfortably.  I offered to take the wheel on the way back down so Amy might sight see.  Besides I was reminded of driving with my mother, which can be a terrifying experience especially in Greece, when you realize that you, the passenger, are the only one looking at the road.  Love you mom!  So Amy found her new house and she moves in on Friday!
Saturday night Dimitri and I went to the ubiquitous nameday celebration in honor of a few guys named Adonis.  Who ironically  do not resemble Adonis in the mythical sense.  We came into a cozy room with some people gathered around the tables picking at the meze in front of them.  I thought we might be late arriving at 10:30 instead of 9:30 when the party was set to begin.  Then I remembered that if you are 15 minutes late in Greece you are considered early!  Mom this is really your kind of place in that sense! (love youxx)  More people began to arrive and the party really took on a festive vibe.  Tucked in the corner was a man on the synthesizer who was playing what I can only describe as a Vegas style lounge act.  Was that a deliberate move to be ironic or was he seriously jamming out to that?  I guess we’ll never know.  Not long into the Vegas act a man with a lyre joined him and the party definitely took an upswing with the Greek tunes.  My favorite.  😉 Since it was pretty hard to have a conversation due to the music being so loud I took the time to make some observations of my surroundings.  There were about 30 or so people at this party, plus about another 10 in the front part of the restaurant which was about as big as the tiled section of Rockas, so not very big.  If I didnt know we were at a nameday celebration I would have thought we were at the National Smokers Association annual smoke out.  As long as Philip Morris has Greece their children will not go hungry.  Come to think of it I believe I saw ashtrays on the maternity ward at the hospital in Hania.  Right next to mommy’s bed!  I think i heard the nurse say to Dimitri that every baby you deliver here you get TWO FREE packs of cigarettes.  One for the mother and one for the baby.  Too bad I’m not having twins.
The party was well underway when some of the restaurants’ other patrons departed for home or other watering holes leaving the waitress to do her job.  She was a young girl in her early 20’s. Probably a student from Athens, since I have rarely seen a young Cretan working outside the home or family business.  I noticed her earlier chatting with a table of young lassies who were enjoying Greece’s national drink: ouzo. Blech!  At one point she pulled up a chair and engaged in conversation which i could not hear due to the music being as loud as it was, so it was kind of like watching a silent movie but with blaring Greek music on the background.  She had a water glass full of ouzo and proceeded to gulp it down like no big thing.  Just kidding-she did grimace pretty hard afterwards but definitely held it together for something as disgusting as ouzo.  She did it again not too long afterwards.  Bravo sister, a woman who can drink!  She stood and cleared away the tables surrounding her like a pro.  A wobbly pro but a pro none the less.  And it dawned on me.  Greeks have a special code in their DNA whereby they can carry a tray brimming with glasses, plates and all manner of detritus from a table (which for some reason tends to be a lot here) with such ease and skill just like a black guy has it in his DNA to be a very impressive athlete.  Too bad for the Greeks waiter-ing is not an olympic sport.  Or smoking for that matter!  Gold medals all around.
Amy's New House!

Amy’s New House!

Living Room at Amy's

Living Room at Amy’s

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