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A matter of timing as we wander down from the Greek Hovel: there is always avrio (tomorrow)

Tom Winnifrith
Monday 26 July 2021

There was a pressing urgency in heading down early to the little village of Kambos for our Sunday lunch. We are now being good about eating breakfast and at least one other meal each day up at the hovel where – at some expense – I have installed a full kitchen imported from across Europe with a Range Cooker, a Belfast sink and other facilities. But once a day we eat out.

Having visited the “new Miranda’s” on Saturday evening, I was still racked with guilt about our abandonment of the “old Miranda’s” and determined to frequent it once again. Moreover, I was told by my business partner, Nicho the Communist, that I was to meet him at 12 noon sharp so that I could collect my 15 litres of olive oil from the Greek Hovel harvest of last year which is sitting at the village press.

Natch Nicho was not there. It was suggested by the bear of a man Vangelis that he might still be asleep. Apparently it was rather a late night for my friends. Indeed, at about one thirty in the afternoon, Nicho emerged looking rather sheepish and confirmed that he had indeed been sleeping it off. ‘When shall we go to the press?’ I asked him, hoping to hear “avrio.” Er no. The press is only open on Sunday lunchtime now, the harvest being a winter affair. Now it is just manned once a week for book-keeping. I must hope against hope that Nicho is more restrained next week. The chap at the press speaks no English and trying to explain that I want the 15 litres that Nicho has had set aside is not something I propose doing alone.

Meanwhile, back in the Square, “Old Miranda’s” was not open. On what should be a busy day, it was closed until 2PM. Welcome to Greekenomics. Or maybe it was there that Nicho was holding Court under the big tree in the Square until the early hours of Sunday morning with the owner among his fellow drinkers. It has happened before.

However, “new Miranda’s” had a pig roasting on a spit. We had no choice but to commit another act of betrayal. It will, I really hope, be our last such treachery. The food is no better and the prices are steeper. Besides which, all this guilt is making me feel like one of those terribly screwed up Catholics in the old days when folks believed in right and wrong. It is not good for me.

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About Tom Winnifrith
Tom Winnifrith is the editor of When he is not harvesting olives in Greece, he is (planning to) raise goats in Wales.
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