Tag Archive for 'Greek Easter'

Athens

Since my last post, I?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢ve done three things: sleep, eat, and talk about going back to sleep or what?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢s to eat. The day I got back from Istanbul, I left for the mountains in the Peloponnese, for Greek Easter – which is a huge event here in Greece. About half the Greek population moved to Athens 30 years ago, but their parents all come from villages, and so there is a mass-migration for a weekend every year. My mothers village, which has a permanent population of about 50 (49 as of yesterday), swells to a few hundred during Easter and the August 15 celebrations. It?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢s certainly a fun time, especially considering it’s predominantly a young crowd now.

Since the Easter celebrations, I stayed in the village with my uncle?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢s family that is based up there (and in the regional capital, Tripoli). The idea was that I take it easy because I was still trying to get over my jet lag ?¢‚Ǩ‚Äú let alone the Anzac trip which just made me more tired. Unfortunately, I didn?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢t get to relax as much as I hoped. This was due to my little cousins ?¢‚Ǩ‚Äú one is ten, the other eight ?¢‚Ǩ‚Äú who expected me to play games with them all day. And when afternoon siesta time came, or the later night-time sleep, they would snore. Actually one night when I shared the bed with the elder Theodore, he karate-chopped me. It was on the neck as well, which kind of hurt (they are both Tae-Kwon-Doe students). It was also at about 4am, just before the neighbours pack of eight dogs started barking at five in the morning. Sorry, I meant those eight fucking piss-stained shit-coloured imbred dogs started barking, at five in the morning (and every morning thereafter). Don?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢t get me started on the rooster.

I spent my week doing that, before I returned to my other Uncle?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢s family home, in Athens and where I am basing my entire trip from. The day I returned, we went out for one of my (Athenian) cousin?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢s birthday (all three girls are aged 20-25). In Greece, the person who is celebrating has to shout drinks for the people that are there. i’m lovin it. Having spent a week doing animal noises to entertain the kids, it was time to have a few drinks and kick-back. I thought I only had a few drinks, but my cousins swear they saw me pouring myself a few extra drinks, and a few more on top of that. Either way, whatever I drank, it was a hangover that lasted well into the next night.

One week on, I have been sleeping, eating, and talking about going back to sleep or what?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢s to eat. I am sleeping 10-12 hours a day, and if it wasn?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢t for food, I would sleep more. So I hope you don?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢t mind, but I am going back to sleep now. Good bye.

Istanbul

Sleep has been a very important concept for me in the last week. Very important. Just as my body had adjusted to American time, it then had to adjust for Greek time. And to make things more fun, I caught a 6pm bus from Athens that arrived 1.30pm the next day in Istanbul. The smelly illegal immigrant from a Black Sea state next to me, felt my pain, and spent 18 hours sleeping and hugging me whenever the bus turned. Four hours later in Istanbul, I was on another bus, to Gallipoli. At 12am I arrived, only to spend the next five hours trying to keep my body from freezing until the start of the Dawn Service (you can read a less whiny post on my Anzac experience here).

The bus trip back to Istanbul was the sweetest sleep ever. Somehow, I sleptwalked my way from the bus to a hostel. And then I was happy.

Istanbul is a great city, and it is completely over run by Aussies and the odd kiwi fruit. The Turks love Australians, and we are being treated like a bit of a novelty. I had a day in the city because the next 19 hour flight (bus drivers in this part of the world seem to think buses are a perfect way to practice for pilot school) doesn’t leave until tommorow, which was great: I finally had the chance to spit on Doge Enrico Dandolos grave (don’t worry, I did an extra one for you as well).

Next destination is the “village” in motherland Greece, deep in the footholds of the Peloponnese, to celebrate Greek Easter.

Athens to Istanbul

Amused myself by trying to throw things in this guy’s mouth

Athens to Istanbul

These guys did not know each other. I could not wait for when they woke up and found out they had been sleeping on each other.