Sunday, 24 July 2016
The heat of summer begins to be unbearable after June 20 and goes on relentlessly till the middle of September. The first thing all greek housewives do is take up all the rugs and carpets and get them cleaned. We take ours out to the back balcony and scrub them with shampoo and a broom. We rinse them off with the hose, hang them over the wall and when they are dry, roll them up, put them in plastic bags and hide them under the bed till October. All our floors are tiled and they are cool in the summertime under our bare feet, freezing in the winter when we cover them up with rugs.
Our big concern in the summer months is fire, as those of you in hot countries will know so well. I don't know how many times I will go out and sniff the air, looking for smoke on the horizon, thinking I have caught a whiff of some local blaze. Fire planes buzz overhead at times, only on look out I hope. The big yellow and red fire fighting Canadairs come in low and fill up in the sea near us if there is a fire on the island. A fire truck is on patrol all day and night.
We have had a few small fires in our area but they have been brought quickly under control.
The roof top cinema has opened and shows this years movies at a good price. You can take your souvlaki up there with you or buy popcorn or chips at the canteen. The council always arranges concerts, art exhibitions and theatre during the summer, always in outdoor locations. Last Saturday there was an '80's' concert (greek music) on the beach. August full moon will be the time for a piano concert at the ruins near us of a temple to Poseidon and there is always some sort of show at Russian Bay which takes place in front of the flood lit ruins of the old Russian Naval station.
This weeks movies, 'Big Fat Greek Wedding no 2', 'Star Wars', 'Batman and Superman' and 'The Good dinasaur'? Not sure of the english name of that last movie. I googled it. The movie is called 'the good dinasaur' - 'kalosavros' in greek.
The older generation go for their medicinal bathe early in the morning. They wade out up to their necks and then sit there bobbing about, chatting to their friends for an hour or so, discussing their health and what pills they are taking. Bathing in seawater is supposed to be excellent for the health, will make your constitution strong and keep you robust through the cold and damp of winter. They all count the number of times they have been into the water and will ask 'and how many swims have you had'? 20 swims for creaky bones, 30 to ward off the flu and 40 to ward off the dreaded lurgy.
The thesaurus had never heard of the 'dreaded lurgy' so I googled it. Apparently the term came from the British comedy series 'The Goon Show' meaning 'a dreadful malady'.
Schools close around 15th June and re-open about 10th September. 3 months holidays! It is just too hot for small children to concentrate.
Backgammon by the sea.
The best way to keep cool on a Sunday afternoon. A bar on the water.