Wednesday, February 28, 2007


Here's a link to a silly movie of me on Clean Monday at Tony's grandparent's trying to play the drum and dancing with Markos. It's about 6 mins long and make sure your speakers aren't too high at the beginning as it only has a mute button and no volume control.

Follow the link: Click Here

Tuesday, February 27, 2007


I'm back at home now. I got back last night and had a good time in Athens yesterday. Where did I leave off last time? Saturday in London. On Sunday I didn't have much time to see anything; I had to leave for the airport around 12, so I just bought some snacks for the rest of the trip and cleaned up and packed. By the way, I posted London pics in the previous post.

I caught my flight and landed in Athens at around 9:30pm. For some reason I thought I was going to land at 11:30. I was glad it was earlier because instead of sleeping in the airport like I thought, I had enough time to book a bed at Athens Backpackers (where I've stayed before). I was sooooo tired once I got there I just slipped into my bed and fell asleep.

On Monday I had the free breakfast and checked out. I wanted to go to the National Archaeological Museum but it didn't open till 1, so I took my time and walked around the National Gardens where I saw a bunch of Army guys practicing their marching. They reminded me of Tones.

I stopped at a cafe near the Museum too and had a frappe and people watched. It was right at an intersection and it was crazy watching the traffic and the scooters weaving through it.

The museum was interesting. Here are some pics: I feel bad for the horses that had to where bits like that in their mouths!

After the museum, I took the long way back to the hostel to pickup my bag. Around the University and National Library, the students were putting on a protest with big signs and a stage with a band singing. The police were all there too just in case. The university students haven't been in school since Christmas and there have been riots in the past couple months over new education reforms.

Once I picked up my bag, I took the metro to Pireaus and hopped onto the ferry. The ferry ride took less time than I thought because it didn't stop at Syros so I was on Paros at 10 and got on my bike and drove home. It felt good to be on my bike again and to breath the nice clean air. And of course my kitty was there ready to greet me when I came home. Here are a few more random Athens pics:


London Pics

I didn't take too many pics, I guess because I have sooo many from before.
Gareth and I:

Hyde Park: the protesters in the distance and The Serpentine Lake

Fashion Week tent:

Victoria and Albert Museum:

Odeon Movie theatre:


Sunday, February 25, 2007

London Town 2

On Sat I was able to get out and explore London. In the morning I said bye to Gareth since he was going to be going away for the rest of the weekend. And I took off on the tube to Oxford street to do a little shopping. I found a very cute bathing suit for just £16! That's mainly what I was looking for. I kept walking towards Hyde Park where a huge protest was going on with hundreds or thousands of people walking along with signs and flags, yelling. The police were all there and they had to close down some major streets too! They were protesting about the war in Iraq and Tony Blair.

I kept walking across the park to the Natural History Museum and saw the London Fashion Week tent. They had a big sale on inside with all the new designer stuff on discount. I didn't go in because I would've just browsed and didn't want to pay for that. The Victoria and Albert museum is right beside that, so I went in there for a look around. They had a fashion section and a highlight on 60's fashion. It was interesting but my favorite part was the Medieval section where they had these big beautiful statues, columns, and arches in this huge room with very tall ceilings. It was sooo neat! I didn't see the whole museum of course; mainly just the first floor because I was starting to get rubber legs from walking so much and I wanted to head to Leicester Square to buy a ticket to the cinema and stop for a latte.

I caught a bus that I would take for a few stops and change onto a different one (because I was too tired to walk) but the traffic was soooo horrible. So I ended up having a relaxing 30mins on the bus just to go a few blocks down the road. Once I got off at Hyde Park Corner, I decided to walk the rest of the way. Lots of streets were shutdown for the protest you see. Everywhere seemed to be really crowded with people. I wasn't expecting so many people because it's not exactly high season. Maybe because it was a Saturday and the protest may have attracted some people? Luckily, since the roads were blocked off and pedestrian friendly, people just walked on those.

I bought my ticket to see "Music and Lyrics" at 6:00 and tried to find a place to sit with a latte. (had an hour or two to kill) I tried 4 different Starbucks and Cafe Neros before I found a place to sit down because they were all full of people.

Then I went back to the Odeon cinema which cost £12.50 - almost as much as my bathing suit! It's a cool cinema though. You have a choice of downstairs or the balcony (which is close to £20). And the chairs are all leopard print and the screen has pink drapes - sounds tacky but it's actually really cool. The movie was a cute, light, romantic comedy and of course I had to get stuck between 2 couples. I want my Tones!

Now it's Sunday morning and I have to leave to the airport in a few hours. Tonight I'll sleep in the airport and tomorrow I'll most likely hang out in Athens for the day (unless my sore throat gets really bad, then I'll head home earlier).

I'll be home Tues and post some pics. Cya!


Saturday, February 24, 2007

London Town

I'm in London now (arrived last night). On Thursday night, I arrived at Athens Airport at around 2am and luckily I found a good spot on a bench to sleep. I didn't sleep much, but it was better than I thought. I think since the bench was pretty hard, it helped my back and since then my back has been feeling about 95% better. I caught my flight on Friday at noonish. When I finally arrived at Gareth's flat at 6pm, all I wanted to do was have a nap. I planned on having about a 1 hour nap then go out to a cinema but when I woke up it was midnight!! I completely fell asleep, I must've needed it!

Gareth came home around the same time so we caught up and watched some late night Eddie Murphy stand-up from the 80's for a little while. I went back to sleep and now I'm up at 8 today and I feel refreshed. I still have a sore throat and a headache but I've been pounding back the OJ and I took some Advil.

Today, I'm looking forward to checking out the V & A museum, the Fashion Week tents, a little shopping, and maybe the National Portrait Gallery if I have time. Tonight I'll go see a movie, maybe "Music and Lyrics" (all the girls at Gareth's work liked it).


Thursday, February 22, 2007

Leaving Today

I’m catching the 7pm ferry tonight and heading on my short trip to London. I should be excited but I’m a bit of a wreck right now which has put a damper on this trip.

Yesterday, my back started hurting; I went to karate anyways and could only do about half an hour of the lesson before it hurt too much, so I had to just lay down. I couldn’t sleep because every position was uncomfortable. And today, it still hurts and I’m not looking forward to carrying my backpack and sitting on the ferry for 5 hours then sleeping at the airport too! It may be due to the dampness of the air here; I thought it would be fine since I’m from an island in Canada but I’ve heard others have the same problem. Who knows! On top of that, I’m feeling stiffness in my neck which usually means a sore throat is coming on too. Darn it!! Pray that I get better or I may be in bed while I’m in London.

I have a few plans of what I want to do once I’m there (I only have 1 full day on Sat and 2 halfish days). London Fashion Week is happening and you can get tickets for the Fashion Weekend when they put all of the crazy designer stuff on discount. I might look into that, but I’d just be browsing. I also want to catch a movie at a real cinema with plush seats and a roof! What a treat! The theatres here are outdoor so they are closed for the winter. And I want to check out the Victoria and Albert museum, there are some neat exhibitions including Style of the 60’s.

On Monday I’ll get most of the day to hang out in Athens too which is nice. I think I’ll hit up a museum or two since I haven’t been to any there yet.

Wish me luck!

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Clean Monday

Yesterday, it was the holiday known as Clean Monday which is the first day of fasting. On that day, you can’t eat or cook with certain food like: dairy, eggs, meat, fish with backbones, or oil. So people eat a lot of veggies, lentils, crustaceans, flat bread, and this cake type thing made of crushed sesame seeds (it has a mild peanut butter taste to it). It's also really popular to fly kites.

In the morning, I went upstairs and helped Markos and Linda make food for lunch. Markos made a bunch of seafood dishes and showed me what to do. We made dishes with squid, octopus, big prawns, mussels, and little fish eggs. Here’s a pic of the octopus:

We brought all this food over to Tony’s grandparent’s and added it to the other food his yia yia made. There were all kinds of veggies, homemade pickles, olives, more octopus and prawns and flat bread. We had wine with it too of course; we usually have 2 main kinds of wine: a white wine and a sweet red wine. We brought over the white wine that we made in Sept (I call it foot wine since we stepped on the grapes to make it!). The food was really interesting, there were things I've never tried before.

Pandelis and his daughter Maria came over too (uncle and cousin of Tony) so there were 7 of us all together. Papoose started playing the tsabouna and yia yia played a little drum made of goat skin. We took turns playing the drum, it was a lot of fun and some of us got up and started doing some Greek dancing too! It was quite hilarious, I have some funny videos. I’m working on getting one of them up on the net but I’m not sure it’ll work. I’ll put a link to it if I figure it out.

Anyways, after hours of eating, drinking wine, dancing, and music, we were so full and ready to have a nap! We went home in the evening and Linda and I watched a movie and had an early night.


Sunday, February 18, 2007

Tony Visit!

Well, lots has happened in the last few days! Tony has come and gone and we had a great time as usual. Tony came very late on Wed night and it was his birthday on Thurs. He’s now the big 22! Yes, he’s getting up there all right! Linda and I made a cake and we had it Thursday night. Here’s a pic: I decorated it and it turned out really ugly! I tried to spell “Happy Bday” in M&Ms but I ran out and then I put sprinkles on so the M&Ms became unreadable, oh well, it tasted reeeeeaaalllly good!

On Friday, I had the day off because my bosses went to Syros and they knew Tones would be here so they let me have more time with him (yay)! So we had a relaxing day just hanging out. We walked out to a lighthouse on the Northern side of the island. It was a really nice hike! There was a great view from the cliffs.

I had Karate, so Tones watched for a while and took a few pics: Only about half the class showed up because it’s a holiday weekend (everyone gets Monday off).

Later that night, Linda, Markos, Tones, and I went to Naoussa for a dinner put on my Markos’ work. It was at a restaurant in the harbor and there were many people sitting at long tables. There were all different types of food too; They’d put about 3 of each dish on the tables and you take what you want from the dish onto your plate like a buffet (but right in front of you). It was really good food! Different dishes kept coming and coming so it was filling. There was also live music and dancing later on. Here’s a pic of Linda and Markos dancing, too bad that guy’s head is in the way!

On Saturday, we went to Tony’s grandparent’s for dinner and had some great food. Tony’s papoose (grandpa) can play the Tsabouna which is made of goat skin and is kinda like a bagpipe but sounds different. He played if for us for a while; it was really neat! Tony should learn how to play to pass down the tradition!

In the evening, we went out with Manolis, Annie, and Flora for some dancing. We all dressed up in costumes because this whole week is known as Carnival. People tend to dress-up during the week and celebrate because this coming Monday is a holiday called “Clean Monday” which is the start of 40days of fasting. So me and Tones dressed up as vampires and the others had hilarious costumes! We went to a club in Naoussa and had a great time dancing till about 3ish.

This morning, we had to get up and pack because Tones had to catch the ferry at 10:30. It was a short but sweet visit as usual but he’ll be back in about 3-4 weeks, so it’s not that long! I have it easy this week, Monday is a holiday and next weekend will be a long weekend for me because I go to London! I’m looking forward to it.


Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Wave Hunt

Tonight, I pick Tones up from the ferry at about 1am. I can hardly wait! I just hope the ferries aren’t cancelled, it’s been really windy lately and they weren’t running on Sunday. So that’s what I’m waiting for right now…Tony! He’ll get to stay till Sunday I think. Update: Just talked to Tony and the ferries aren’t running at the moment, but hopefully in a few hours they will, he’s going to be late (hopefully not too too late!)

I’ll recap the weekend a little. On Saturday I had a weird dream that I was in a cliffside building looking out the window at humongous waves washing over the cliff; they were so huge and dangerous but really cool to watch. So when I woke up I wanted to find big waves (don’t ask me why, I just wanted to). So I went to Houhlakas, a secluded beach we used to go to in the summer. It can be dangerous because the waves can get pretty big and the coast is really rocky. Anyways, it was very windy so I thought for sure there’d be huge waves but when I got there, there were only ripples! The wind was going in the other direction. I took a few pics and hiked around a little though. At one point the wind was so strong, it almost threw me over a cliff and I had to sit down very quickly so it wouldn’t push me further! The third pic is from the road between Houhlakas and home with Paroikia in the background by the water.

After I left, I was going to head to the another beach on the opposite side but it started raining so I turned back. Oh well, some other time!

Here are some random pics. The first is of one of the main ferry lines that come here, Blue Star. There are about 2 or so ferries per day now but during the summer they are constantly coming and going. The next is of an old man and his donkey; it’s pretty common to see a donkey walking down the road with supplies on it’s back.

I also dyed my hair darker. The sun bleaches it so quickly to this sick, coppery, gross color that I hate (on me anyways, I can't pull it off). So I feel much better now with my “honey chestnut” color! Ignore the face – bad face day.


Friday, February 09, 2007

Yellow Belt and Half Way

Last night I had my testing in Karate for the next level. There were 3 categories :
Kihon - you preform stances, kicks, and punches in a group; the Sensei tells you which ones to do.
Kata - a memorized set of movements that you preform on your own.
Sanbon Kumite - with a partner, you do 5 attack and defense combinations.

I'm a dangerous, highly skilled, yellow belt now! It was neat getting the belt and certificate during the little ceremony. Once we all got our new belt colors, we knelt and had to take our old belts off and replace them with the new ones. I felt bad for my white belt, like I was moving on without it, lol! I'll keep it though. Who would've thought I'd be taking karate this year? Definitely didn't see that coming (I wasn't planning on living in Greece either) - interesting things happen sometimes. I'm glad I started karate because I really do love it!

Today is also a big day because Tony is exactly half way through his Army duty! Now he has 6 more months and we are both eagerly counting down. It'll probably be easier in the last half because it'll be all downhill from now on and the weather will be getting nicer too!


Wednesday, February 07, 2007


I just talked to Tones and apparently there are scorpions everywhere at their camp! They are finding them in boots, helmets, and tents. Tony was empting out his tent while on the phone because he heard the "click click" of a scorpion in there. Yikes! I thought they would hibernate or something in the winter; I guess not. They probably just want a warm place to sleep.

In the summer Tony and I found one (I don't think I blogged about that). We were on our motorbikes going down the driveway at night and I saw the shadow of something walking in the headlights. Tony brought it back to the house on a stick. It was killed because they aren't nice to have around. There are 2 main types that I've heard about: a black kind and a yellow kind. The black ones are pretty harmless and their bite doesn't hurt too much; the yellow ones are very painful and you need medical attention right away!