We knew since we started planning this trip over two years ago that we wouldn’t be home for the holidays. Only in the past few months had we decided exactly where in Europe we would be – Athens, a city full of ruins, history and as many pigeons as people (and being that it is the second most densely populated city in Europe, that is a lot of birds who occasionally try to fly at Chad’s head). After receiving a very generous money transfer into my bank account from my lovely mother, Chad and I decided to use a small portion of it for purchasing the following for our Athens flat apartment: two bottles of Baileys, spanikopita, wine, juice and sandwich supplies. We already had some chocolate covered honey treats for munching, and made coffee cubes to go in the Baileys.
We made sure to set up a Skype date with my parents, which unluckily for my Dad was 6am their time (4pm Greece time – my Mom is a nurse and makes a lot of overtime dollars when she works on Christmas, 7am-7pm).
Other than that, we spent the day watching “Home Alone,” “Home Alone 2,” and “Love Actually.” I hadn’t seen the first two in about a decade (and hadn’t seen “Love Actually” since last month).
To throw a little Greek into our Christmas mix, we had Spanikopita for dinner:
We decided against getting each other gifts, for a couple of reasons. Firstly, there is no way to leave the apartment while Chad is sleeping, because you have to quadruple lock the door, and if I locked it as I left, he wouldn’t be able to leave in an emergency. Secondly, we have a baggage limit. Thirdly, there isn’t much we need besides socks (Chad) and jeans (me). We’ll grab those things when we can find them for cheap/when we find ones we like.
I’m glad we’ve been able to connect with some of our family and friends over the internet, and glad that pictures of my new neice’s first Christmas are starting to slowly be uploaded (and my Mom promised to take many more after work tonight). I miss and love so many people, but feel very fortunate that they are only a few clicks on Facebook away.