Travelnwrite_ kali mina ~ it is december again in greece ~

“Kali Mina!” is the greeting called out to friends at the start of each new month in Greece. Istanbul airport hotel in terminal It means basically, “Have a good month”. Hotel istanbul taksim It is just one of the many things we do in this new-to-us culture that we didn’t do ‘back home’ in the United States.

This month, even though we enthusiastically used the greeting, we ask ourselves, ‘How could it be December already?’ Way back in September when we shifted from our suburban Seattle life to our rural setting tucked away in an olive grove, it seemed we would have such a long stretch of time to experience ex pat life in Greece.


This is our third December at our Stone House on the Hill; a hill that overlooks the small villages that dot this small section of the Messinian Bay coastline that rests in the shadow of the Taygetos Mountains. Cartoon hotel in istanbul This month marks our second full year of home ownership in Greece’s Peloponnese and our ‘part-time ex pats’ life.

Those of you who’ve been with us since that first December recall that at the time we said we’d caught our daydream but we’d give it ‘five years’ to become reality. We’d give ourselves five years here and if it didn’t measure up to that daydream, we’d put it up for sale. The w hotel istanbul We don’t talk of selling or five years these days. Golden age 1 hotel istanbul Just as we’ve changed our little stone home, we’ve changed our attitude about time.

And much has changed at the rather bland little house we purchased and occupied during that rather bleak first December. Antea hotel istanbul Our time spent here has been dictated by doing the ‘Schengen Shuffle’, 90-days here and 90-days out dance step set forth in our tourist visa. Hotel luxe istanbul The Schengen Treaty covers more than 20 countries on this side of the Atlantic and dictates the length of stay in them, either individually or as a whole.

With each stay, s iga, siga, or slowly, slowly, the house has been changing, as have we. Boutique hotel in istanbul Living life in 90-day segments has given us a new appreciation for time and its passage.

We are just beginning to let go of that American approach of timelines and deadlines (something we both lived by in our professional lives and therefore struggle with giving it up). Istanbul airport hotels with shuttle Things here get done when they get done. The city hotel istanbul Days may pass while we wait for that promised mason, electrician, plumber or delivery of materials. . History hotel istanbul ..then as if they were falling dominos, one thing trips another and within an hour or two, suddenly everything is done.

I so look forward to reading about your beautiful Stone House on the Hill life, as your experiences, and the way you describe them are SO very familiar. Hotel 4 star in istanbul I can’t tell you how comforting it is that you completely understand and abide by the ‘siga-siga’ philosophy, or the way things get done when they get done. Divan hotel istanbul taksim You have adopted the Greek culture AND adapted to the land SO wonderfully; I smile and nod at every one of your adventures and the gratitude you express for them.

Oh Poppy, I am filled with such gratitude each time I visit the village and wave back to some local resident who now recognizes me, or when I go into the bakery and the clerk makes me repeat the word in Greek for bread until I say it correctly, or watching the fishermen return with their catch. . Riva hotel istanbul .there are everyday miracles to be had and I am so glad I’ve had a chance to experience them! Hugs and Merry Christmas to you, Jackie Delete

So fun to watch your stone house become a home in your photos over three Decembers. Hotel charme istanbul It’s easy to see that your life has evolved from a seasonal vacationer/visitor to a contented member of your community in your adopted country. Hotel a istanbul booking You’ve done a beautiful job in this post of summing up life as an expat and the sense that TIME has a different flow abroad. Blue house hotel istanbul It’s not hard at all to trade in the frenzy culture where time feels like a ruthless dictator for a culture where things get done when they get done… Ilkay hotel istanbul Of course, in your case now as you head back to the US, some efficiency at the Greek Consulate is to be hoped for and I’ll be crossing my fingers for you! Reply Delete

Well, here we are back in lengthy traffic jams not caused by goat or sheep herds. Side hotel istanbul In temperatures so low (24F right now) that we wrap ourselves in layers to go to the car to drive to the store and race to get our shopping done fighting our way through the holiday frenzy. Istanbul ataturk airport hotel It is a shock to the system! Delete