Say you were born during the mid-eighties in Athens (or most of Greece for that matter). Say that like most of the kids of the same age, growing up you probably had not only one but two television sets in the house – those bulky TVs that took up almost as much space as a small piece of furniture (I remember ours had gum stuck on the door of the compartment where the control buttons were). The chances are that anything you watched that wasn’t Greek was most probably American. The chances also are that almost all of it was either filmed or set in New York.
This year has been one of many firsts and it was bound to go out with a bang. In keeping with the theme of 2010, this was my first Christmas away from home. (the Greek home that is, I’m still very confused with the use of the particular noun).
Tis that day of the week when you crawl out of bed when it’s longer time for breakfast but a late brunch. Hangover or not, it depends on what you were up to the night before. I once got up early on a Sunday (rare exception to my rules). I decided I was going to the farmer’s market to get some fresh produce to cook a homemade brunch with all the trimmings. It turns out nothing is open before 11 on Sundays (except from Euphorium Bakery, lucky break). That is something a Lazy Sunday person like me would never, ever know.
But the Sunday pattern is almost always the same: waking up (way) after 11.30, having eggs and coffee, reading newspapers and magazines, all that at home or at the local cafe in the company of good friends.
The Lazy Sunday pattern also includes plans for the weeks to come: plans to visit museums and exhibitions (which are almost surely never going to be fulfilled) and plans to start eating more healthily and join the gym (which have even less chances to be fulfilled).
The Lazy Sundays are probably the most unproductive days of them all and therefore they’re greatly appreciated when you’ve had the week from hell and you’re content with doing nothing for a change. They can cause great frustration though when you’re hit with emotions of uselessness that make you feel like a big pathetic slob.
Like today, that I’ve done nothing else but mindlessly surf the web (that expression sounds so old-fashioned now, doesn’t it?) and browse at blogs for most of this Lazy Sunday morning. Highlights of my explorations so far: The Sartorialist’s Mary Kate photo. I’m absolutely in love with the photo and the outfit. Carl Kleiner’s photos for IKEA. Amazing idea.
I like the Lazy Sundays a lot. I was actually thinking that if I had a band, that’s how I would like to call it. It turns out the name is sort of taken. 😦
To be continued…
This sign was a common and seasonal sight where I grew up. Every summer, our local cinema would put a similar one on the preface of the building and announce that the winter season was over. ‘We’ll meet again in September’ and that’s how we knew it was time to catch up on anything we’d missed during winter in the summer cinema under the stars.
– summer sun
– gentle summer breeze
– Spitalfields market (any other London market will do)
– a mix of lovely people
1. Enjoy your lie-in until noon. Get out of bed and take your time to get ready.
2. Forget about the tube. Take the bus through the empty streets of the City.
3. Wander through the market and find your friends who are browsing through the stalls. Greet them with a big hug and a big smile.
4. Order brunch and a mug of coffee and chat while waiting for the food to get ready. Talk about holiday plans and munch on your food while you gossip about what you’ve been up to lately.
5. Comment on the quirky outfits of the people who frequent East London in Greek so no-one will know what you’re talking about.
6. Say goodbye with a big hug and a big smile.
7. Listen to bossa nova on the bus ride home. Make plans to visit Festival Brazil which you missed again this week.
8. Wonder why every person who is getting on the bus has a big smile on their face, even grown men. Turn your head to see the giant teddy bear sitting on the bus seat behind you. Get off the bus smiling.
Not suitable for freezing. Consume within the same day.
The blanket is back in the closet along with homesickness this week. The sun is out again and so are we, happy Londoners in sandals and tank tops sporting sunglasses, maxi dresses and fake tans (I stand out in my glorious paleness).
Londoners that were born and raised here, Londoners that have only been here for a while, Londoners now, New Yorkers and Parisians tomorrow, this city is made of its people. It’s a city where you get your morning croissant (the buttery pastry with a French name), from Eatalia (an Italian deli) where people greet you with a ‘Buenos Dias’ (good-morning in Spanish).
London is a city full of moments like that. You’re having lunch at the park on the Riverside where a Spanish festival is taking place. You queue to grab a spicy chorizo bap with Rodopi whose name is the same as a sierra in Greece. Then it’s time to fill up the glass with Emmanuelle who comes from Bretagne and wouldn’t want to live in Paris. You wonder if that paella is good with Italian Ornella who lived in New York last year and thinks that Greek men are the most passionate. You share your churros with Kieran who was born in England to Irish parents and who plans to be in Brazil for the next World Cup with his Brazilian girlfriend. You make way for James to sit who is English/Australian and has a last name that could land him a career in porn. (Then of course you’ve exceeded your lunch break by half an hour and have to come back to a backlog of emails from a demanding French and an even more demanding Aussie.)
London is the place where you meet your Colombian friends for a quiet drink after work and end up downing aguardiente shots from a pedicab driver outside the Palace theatre while the GS man from Tuam complains that the empanadas are not good. It’s also the place where you find sand and beach balls in the club that’s hosting a Greek party where a 50 year old man with an at least 30 year old tan is licking the pole while dancing to Madonna’s Holiday.
Now this might be a weird mix for some. For me?
In the words of Joey: I like it! What’s not to like? Custard? Good. Jam? Good. Meat? Gooooooooooood.