φιλία = friendship
Kiki met Marina, Mike and their daughter, Daphne back in the early 90s in Switzerland where she was living at the time and quickly became lifelong friends. Cut to 20 years later and we were met at the Athens airport by Marina eagerly holding a sign up at the arrivals gate. Much hugging ensued.
Marina and Mike live (with Daphne who is no longer a 5 year old girl, but a 27 years old woman with a masters degree in marine biology – my how time flies!) in a town on the beach about 20 minutes out of Athens called Lagonisi. We were whisked to their lovely house and a spread of meats, cheeses, olives, apricots and bread was put on. The weather was a slightly muggy 28 degrees, so a couple of local Greek beers were also downed gratefully.
We were also met by their 13 year old Alsatian, Aris.
The house and garden are like a gallery of art pieces all made by Mike and Marina.
They have lemon trees and olive trees and randomly….. turtles that Mike has saved from the side of the road. They have 10 of them!
Mike took us down the beach for a bit of a look which turned into a walk from one end of the beach to the other over rocks and pebbles collecting sea glass and smoothed pieces of china.
Then he drove us around the coast up to an an archaeological site of a temple called Sounion where we watched the sun go down behind the clouds – which was pretty amazing, but I’m not going to give you any facts about it…
Then what was even more amazing was that when we got home, Marina, God love her, had ordered souvelaki and gyros for dinner!!! Delicious!
Now, I know that you can’t keep saying that you’re on your home time when travelling… “it’s 2pm here, so it’s really 7pm for us.” But as we were eating our delicious Greek fare, it was noted that it was about 3am at home, so sleep came soon after and jeez we slept well! Kiki woke up to find Aris asleep against the door of our guest flat. Mike had woken up and couldn’t find him, worriedly looking around the garden and calling out to him. He has apparently never slept down there before, so it was very unusual behaviour….. we decided that he loved us and was protecting us – from what, we’re not sure, as the only life threatening thing in that garden were a few mozzies.