Thoughts In English While Living In Greek


So I was sitting in a bar, a Greek bar, in Athens. A bar that is more like a cool hang-out, a den with cushions and awesome music. There is Charlie Chaplin on one wall, and Laurel and Hardy on another. The staff bring you cold water as soon as you sit down, and you get popcorn with the beer. That doesn’t happen in England. You ask for water, and may have to pay, and most bars won’t have popcorn for sale.

Anyway, in my company there were six other people here, including my two year old daughter who is / will be Greek-English. Yes, in a bar with a toddler. Don’t judge, this is Greece. The other five were all talking in Greek, and my grasp of the language is not good enough to keep up. My wife and her friends usually apologise for being all Greeky, but I say don’t be silly. They are Greek after all. And part of the fault is me not learning the language fully – which I should be doing.
And also what I should be doing is screenwriting. If I have time to blog then I have time to write movies. Right? Well, I have just started writing on this very site and do feel I need to be trying to get at least one post out a day. Or there abouts. You know, to get the feelers out. To convince myself, and my potential audience, that I am taking this seriously. Plus, the trip to Greece was a holiday. Why should I work? Oh yeah, because I love it. I vowed to get straight back into the screenwriting as soon as we returned to England. I am not complaining, but did not have a lot of time to just spend hours writing, which is why the blogging has been a bit of an easier chore, and that screenwriting has had to suffer a little bit. I put first warm feta cheese pie (and picking up the flaky crumbs with my pincers), quality family time, and just taking in the sun and Greek hospitality. Remember though, the writing process is not just about typing up words or writing stuff down – a lot of it is just simply what goes through your mind, what happens to or around you while you are thinking.
I said to the wife, on more than one occasion, that I should write a book about the differences between Greece and England. That comparison just sprung up all the time. Garbage collection. What time kids go to bed. Late evening temperature. It goes on and on. And Greece wins each time. At one point I’m stirring my frappe with a straw, stirring it faster than the earth is spinning, which is how I want it. I want it to pass by slowly, time, because I love it here. In Greece. Then I think of people in England, nobody in particular, just people I imagine frowning upon cold coffee. Why’d you want cold coffee? Because I’m a moron okay! I imagine that the same way Joe responds to Mr Pink when he asks why does he get to be Mr Pink.

I realize too I could have written on the plane home, on Microsoft Word, having read the last part of Gone Girl on the journey to Greece. But it does not always pan out that way. I have a David Fincher (him again?) interview to read in Sight & Sound magazine. Not to mention a certain two year-old to entertain for four hours. Turned out to be a three and a half hour flight. Good job pilot. And the child slept for the last hour of it. But my free time sitting on the plane was spent allowing myself to just drift, closing my eyes. The soft humming and vibrations of the plane. My wife dozing two seats down, bless her. I will not disturb her now with boring chit chat. She has said goodbye to her dear family and friends for the time being, and she is tired. Rest. Σ’αγαπώ.
So I have my eyes closed and wonder if I will fall asleep in this upright position. Doesn’t matter. I wondered if I should Tweet some of that Fincher interview – which was great and had some great quotes. And that photo I took of the Το κορίτσι που εξαφανίστηκε (The Girl Who Has Gone Missing) poster – I should make that my Facebook cover photo. And I frown that I still have not seen the movie, and can’t fully contribute to the online debate. I thought of my screenplays, and which required scenes that take place on a plane. That the aisle seat is actually pretty cool. I can see what is going on. And I can see a lot of elbows.

And I interrupted my own thoughts with something else, I don’t remember. Again, it doesn’t matter. It had been a hectic yet relaxing week in Athens. I thought about how much I love it there, and that when I am not writing I must look at flights for the next trip.
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