Monday, 19 December 2011

Christmas in Greece (7 Days before Christmas)

Tis the season to be jolly!

It's December once again and 2011 is approaching its near end. Finally, I'm done with final exams and also I'm so excited for our Christmas trip with my family. One of my favorite aspects of Christmas is the fact that we go to many shops and get something to give to our loved ones. In other words, the theme of "Sharing and Giving". Christmas shopping in Athens started this week and will continue until the end of the year. This means that starting today, the shops are open from 9am to pm during week days and from 10am to 6pm every Sunday, of course with the exception of major holidays such as Christmas (December 25), Boxing Day (December 26) and New Year.
This morning, me and my mum went to bring my sister to her Sunday classes before we roam around the shops and do our Christmas shopping. It was really fun and the atmosphere was really festive. Although winter sales in Athens officially start during the second week of January, many shops start to offer weekly discounts and sales.

Have fun!


Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Note of the Day

I just came back from a long and tiring day. To be honest, it really took me a long time to decide whether I should post something as an update for my blog. Today, was as usual, but with an unexpected twist. As I was returning home from the campus, Syntagma Square was so quiet and beautiful, but at the same time I felt an emptiness as if a war just ceased. There were lights, lights that gave you a feeling of melancholy as well as fear. As I continued to walk, my eyes started to be watery and my throat and nose began to hurt. Why is there an autumn breeze carrying a toxic substance? I realized that this was all from all the Molotov thrown hours earlier by rioters. I just remembered a terrible event that took place about three years ago.
As you may have already read at the news, Greek rioters and the police clashed once again to mark the 3rd year anniversary of Alexis Grigoropoulos, who was about 15 years old when he was shot and killed by a police officer in December 2008.The country has seen the worst riots during that time. Every rioter destroyed the whole square and the center looked chaotic. Syntagma square was beautifully decorated for the holidays during that year with a huge Christmas Tree at the center. However, the Christmas mood was swept in just a matter of hours, after the whole incident. Everything was burnt, shops were destroyed and robbed, garbage bins burnt, pieces of glasses everywhere and many others.
Earlier today, this scene was once again brought to reality and has stirred a lot of mixed emotions and opinions. But for the citizens this event became an every day scene since the riots during the past months and the economic and political turmoil made everyone immune to all of this. 
I just had a conversation earlier with a psychology major friend discussing how the country is so beautiful with Acropolis just in front of us. This country is about to be thrown in the garbage. Can you imagine? This country was the birth of democracy and the cradle of Western Civilization, how could this be possibly happening? The government is not doing any justice for this lovely country. This also affects the tourism and the image of the country. What or who has caused this?
With all of the this events happening, I feel an unexplainable pity for this country.
My thoughts and deepest sympathy is with the family of the victim. May you find comfort with God’s presence during this hard times. God Bless.
What are your thoughts?
Photo taken at