Matthew: Shorn and Celebrated

Matthew couldn’t stand being a wooly beast anymore but wouldn’t go to the barber so, as we were without scissors, I gave him a clipper cut. I’ve never done a clipper cut before but I think it turned out well. I also played with his beard but he doesn’t have the patience for photos so all you get is the finished product.

Today is Matthew’s birthday but as birthdays aren’t a huge deal in Greece we didn’t find candles so here he is blowing out imaginary candles because, after all, what’s a birthday cake if the birthday boy or girl hasn’t gotten the chance to spit all over it before it is shared?!

Greeks celebrate name days with far more pomp than birthdays. On your name day people will wish you, “Χρόνια πολλά” (krónia pollá) or “many years”. This can be said at other times but you’ll hear it especially around the new year. My name day is Christmas Day which, growing up in a Greek American family is a bit like being a Christmas baby.

Vegan in Greece tip: look for pastry like Μπακλαβά (baklava) labeled for fasting and it will not contain eggs or dairy! The Greek Orthodox Church has a lot of fasting days and a lot of inherently vegan and vegetarian traditional foods.

Χρόνια Πολλά and Bring on the Μπακλαβά!