Mohos and Back Again

Sunday, October 23, 2005

So, another week has gone by. I'd like to report that I'm now completely fluent in Greek, at times even correcting other native speakers' grammar. I'd like to, but of course I can't. However, I now know when to use things like 'va' (pron: na) in a sentence, put verbs into the future tense, and play a new backgammon game called asodio. It was a good week in school in any case, and my class officially ends tomorrow, after which I have a few private lessons to make up for the fact that I started a little late in the week.

A shot of Hania just to fill space
For the week itself, there's not much else to say. Aside from my Grecian studies, I've gone out for coffee - by which I mean various flavour of hot chocolate - a LOT. Especially compared to my relatively cafe-free life back home. We (my teacher and I) play a lot of tavli, and as I mentioned, I've learned a new game or two. We also went to a cafe one night with a piano, and since it was dead (there were three other tables in the whole place, and it seats between 100-200 people), and of course I had to play a little bit. I also have been out for a movie once or twice in my weeks here, having now seen 40 Year Old Virgin (not that good) and Charlie & The Chocolate Factory (not that bad). I'm excited about this new Zorro I see is supposed to be coming out, I've certainly seen the old one enough times.

The weekend came, however, and I decided whatever else happened I wanted to get out of Hania for it and go somewhere. Since I probably wouldn't have another chance to see my cousins in Mohos, well, you already knew I headed there from the title. I rented a car Friday after class, checked some flight information here about getting to London (I've ruled out Egypt and will probably head to Ireland and then England/Wales a few weeks before hopping the plane home), and took off for Mohos.

The view on the way up to Mohos
It's about a three hour drive, but I had a bunch of new Greek music courtesy of my cousins up north to keep me company, so it went pretty quickly. Not to mention some beautiful night views, though I didn't take this picture until the next day. Incidentally, I'd like to buy some CDs here, and probably will buy one or maybe two, but they're _20_ Euros! That's almost $40 CDN. Or, to put it in a more universal currency, highway robbery. In any case, I have a bunch of music that I think my sisters (and hopefully dad) will like too. But once again, I digress. I got to Mohos and ate dinner with Maria and Ari, and then Maria stayed up with me and we chatted and played some more Tavli while watching who-knows-what movie with you-know-who and that Greek actor, Then Theimame. Oh, actually, I do remember, it's the one where Sean Penn is an autistic father fighting to raise his child. Pretty good actually, though now that I remember it, I don't think Then made an appearance...

Iraklion throws the ball in and the game away
It gets pretty chilly up in the mountains at night, and I was surprised again at the Greek weather. The next day, we went to watch Mohos play Iraklion, apparently the number one and two ranked teams in the league, and the game was in Mohos. The field is awesome, carved right into the mountain with a great view backing it from the stands. The game was not even close, and the home team took the game 5-0, but it was still entertaining, if only for the new Greek I was learning from agitated spectators. Not the sort of stuff you see written on a blackboard.

Soccer match amidst the beauty of Crete
I mentioned the cold, but midday, it was quite hot. I was wearing a sweater because the house was still cold, but on the field it must've been 28 Celsius. Beautiful! I did eventually decide that I should get some photos of the game just for fun, since the talent was skewed a little in one direction, and I wandered up to where some of the hardcore fans were sitting... on the old cliff that had been carved long before the new astroturf had been put down, not to mention the two-year old stands. It was definitely a soccer game in Greece, looking down on the field from the mountain amidst rocks, shrubs, and various degrees of evidence that goats grazed these same shrubs. That night we went down to Stalida, we were going to have dinner with Mina and Maria, but they had company they couldn't get rid of, so it turned out to be us. It was a nice dinner, and a beautiful night to drive back up - the moon was on the water and the lights of the coastal towns were lit brightly - so I got the photo which I'd wanted the prior night. My picture didn't turn out too well, but it's hard to snap a quick photo when you're sitting in a truck on a narrow road in the middle of the night. We tried, darn it!

Peeling fresh pomegranates
Today, Sunday, I went down to the cafeneio with Ari and Yanni (their son) and sat there with them for awhile, and at one point, without asking, the priest took off in Ari's truck which didn't even make Ari blink and I thought it was amusing to just see him drive off. He was back very shortly after, and then we headed home, and Ari came down with me to pick some pomegranates off the tree to eat. Then we all sat around peeling them, and the priest came by again and stayed for awhile. Very nice guy, but I guess you'd expect that...

Ari & Maria cleaning fish
I had to get going at some point, even though I was unsuccessful at removing the virus from Maria's computer (with the internet connection completely disabled, no Windows disc, and everything in Greek, it was a long shot from the get go, but I really did try), so I said my goodbyes and left after lunch and the Karate Kid (man, I love that movie!).

Now I'm back in Hania, I have a week or less of class left, and then I'm probably heading back to Tripolis to visit and pick olives or whatever else but mostly to see the family before I hit the skies. Speaking of family, if someone doesn't mind telling Aunt Soula, I have pictures of everyone over here up for her.

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