Temperatures spiked in the middle of June just before our trip back to the UK and that forced us to finally get around to buying a couple of fans. The heat factor went from isn’t it a lovely day and it’s such great fun to eat on the balcony each evening to dear bloody God how do you breathe through this in the space of 24 hours. From that point my conversational repertoire and my email exchanges have consisted, in their entirety, of just how damned hot it is. It’s hot. It’s so hot that parts of your body that you didn’t know existed are brought to your attention by excessive perspiration.
It became hot again on the political scene with the murder of Sokratis Giolias, a journalist, on July 19th. There have been announcements by the group claiming responsibility for the murder that they intend to destroy democracy and capitalism in Greece. There’s room for a lot of feeble jokes in response to this but I’ll let someone else make them. Strikes continued with doctors, lawyers and truckers going on strike for days at a time. No one knew the lawyers were on strike and again I’ll let someone else make the feeble jokes. The day that the truckers started their strike coincided with a huge storm over the northern suburbs so Kifissia Avenue turned into a river whilst drivers caused 2-mile tailbacks by queuing at gas stations while there was still petrol. It was business as usual.
If we’ve not been on an island for the weekend then we’ve spent Sundays at Marathon beach, getting up early to ensure parking and to claim a place on the sand. No matter how early we drive over there are still families who have already pitched camp under the pine trees with their collapsible tables, chairs and cool boxes. It’s not a fashionable beach, it’s there for people to keep cool so the fashion police aren’t patrolling and if you’re thinking that wobbly tummies and bikinis shouldn’t be seen together then this beach isn’t for you.
Around the beach there are the fruit stalls, the koulouri man, cafes, tavernas and ouzeris so there’s enough to keep you from being hungry and thirsty. The peddlers (all illegals, I suspect) come around to offer DVDs, bracelets, necklaces, bikinis, sunhats, beach balls and various pieces of plastic to keep children amused so everyone’s catered for at some level. Although the day that they had a job lot of mini megaphones was, in my view, over-catering but perhaps that’s just me being picky.
It was a year ago that we came here to view the place and decide whether or not we wanted to live here. If I could still have the driver and air-conditioned car that I had for that weekend then it would improve my experience considerably. But, that aside, despite all that we’ve had thrown at us we’re still on the side of enjoying it. But it’s hot.
Did I say that it was hot?