Yesterday I was wandering down a little side street on the way to my friend’s house and a motor bike passed me; sitting side-saddle on the pillion was a leggy, mini-skirted, pink-stilletoed blonde lady smoking a cigarette. Of course she didn’t have a crash helmet on because can you imagine the havoc that would have caused to her perfectly blowdried hair? A few yards later I passed a couple of Filipino ladies who work in the building next to mine. One of the ladies has dog-walking duties as part of her remit and I often see her hauling a poodle-type thing around the area. Neither of them look particularly happy to be doing this; the poodle looks as if it should be doing the poodle equivalent of drinking a dry martini while having its toenails painted and the lady clearly wonders at the sanity of people who have animals in order to tie a bit of leather around its neck and haul it around a street.
The pavements are particularly rickety around this stretch and the easiest thing to do is to walk in the road but I had to make a quick manoeuvre sideways to avoid the motorcycle escort and the BMW coming along the road. Probably a politician wanting the roads cleared so that he’d have an easy journey down to the parliament building. I like to imagine that it was Mr Papandreou which means I can have another addition to my list of prime-ministers-passing-me-in-cars-who-ignore me. (Vaslav Haval, John Major and Tony Blair – clearly I’m not a serious collector). The oranges are starting to fall from the trees and one of them just hit the rear bumper as they flashed past me. Oranges are decorative here and we’re not allowed to pick them and, oddly enough, it seems to be one of the few rules that the Greeks follow.
At the moment there is a taste of dust in the air and yellow pine pollen covers the cars and balconies. Pros and cons: I seem to spend ages sweeping the balconies but it’s warm enough to sit on the balcony later. It’s been an effortless glide into sitting outdoors with my coffee.
Artichokes and courgettes of all sizes, including their flowers, are stacked on the market stalls. Bottles of the new pressing of dark green olive oil are lined up on the olive stalls. I wonder when I’ll buy the 5-liter can rather than a 1-liter bottle.
We still have some teething troubles; mostly around banking but mostly I don’t care.