notes from thessaloniki






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02/23/2006: Today is Tsiknopempti in Greece, the biggest day of   Greek Carnival. My husband tells me that the "Tsikno" refers to the smoky smell of grilling meats, and "pempti" means "Thursday". This is a day to pig out (heh) on meat, before embarking on the culinary deprivations of the  Lenten period. Should I mention that in addition to carnivorous gluttony (the word "Carnival" is no accident, you know), much wine and other spirits are typically consumed?


Every restaurant and taverna in Greece will be packed today, and  all the musicians will be employed. It will be a very happy Greece. We've made two resolutions: 1) to go out early and come home at a sane hour (hopefully half-sober) and 2) afterward,  to stick with the Lent diet this year, so we can both lose a little weight and drink a lot less. ...In other words, the same two resolutions we make and break every year. But this time we really will. Won't we?

Images of Carnival in Crete, from the Carnival in Rethymno web site.