We have been officially living in Greece for three weeks on Wednesday. It’s been some rich three weeks. Rich in experience, rich in joy, rich in frustrations.
What have we gained?
A new home in a wonderful neighbourhood, close to friends and people who are genuinely kind and helpful. Humbled time and again is how I felt by the amount of care and help we have received so far. From being welcomed to the airport to having us connected to their own energy supply for the last three days(long story, I won’t get into details). From being invited for coffee SPONTANEOUSLY on Sunday morning to having a glyko(sweet) at midnight in a neighbouring town, we have been surprised to find ourselves part of a great community for which we are grateful.
Emma has gained an appetite for fruit(no, she isn’t cured of her famous pickiness but at least she has added chicken souvlaki, watermelon and melon to her list of favourites). Everybody’s love. A passion for the sea and swimming(she can swim with armbands now and has no fear of water). A love for HUGE dogs, thanks to our neighbours Lena and Pavlos who have a silly gentle monster of a dog who loves kids, NEVER barks and steals cookies from unaware kids(Emma was still licking her fingers after Nami took her cookie, she was so gentle in doing it:-).
All in all, we have gained experience of life in a hot climate.
We had expected stress from tiredness, emotional distress and working long hours at setting a home but what totally tripped us over has been…the humidity. We have been reassured it’s the worst in 20 years but we had never anticipated the fatigue that goes with purely sitting in an armchair and dripping sweat. We haven’t enjoyed a good night sleep since we arrived and we look forward to putting air-con in this week so that our brains go back to normal again.Again, I personally have been humbled as a mum by the experience. I never boasted at being the perfect mum but these three weeks I felt sooo many times that I let my girlie down by losing patience often, having no energy to play with her(expect in the sea, where I felt almost normal again) and sometimes raising my voice and saying things I didn’t mean just because I felt so…hot and sticky.
We have also a better understanding of the Mediterranean culture now. People go to have a swim in the sea often, have many frappes during the day, have a siesta at noon and a late dinner(out, many times) because everything is regulated by the heat and not because they are lazy…Some might but after I found workaholic hubby asleep behind his desk several times I realised it’s not simply a matter of choice. You do these things because there is no other way simply.
Okay, time to wrap it up. Sweaty again, time for my sixth shower for today and for a bit of siesta(reading on my Kindle, in my case as sleep is impossible in a hot bed).
Talk soon, clammy hugs from Thessaloniki!