Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Notes from Crete

  1. Knew that Englishmen, like mad dogs, go out in the noonday sun. Did not realize they did it fully dressed and in sweaters. Cannot quite get over sight of British matrons pulling their cardigans about them when it's 80 degrees Farenheit and sunny, saying "It's rather draughty, isn't it?"
  2. After having become an Albino through living in Chicago, am now resuming my proper nut-brown color.
  3. Greeks are awfully nice people.
  4. Driving past beach on Rhodes saw boobies aplenty. Two American passengers screamed.
  5. Favorite passenger quote so far, from a British woman upon seeing ruins of Minoan palace at Malia: "Oh, look how it's gone all crumbly."
  6. Dining room menu items that remind one that one is traveling English style: kedgeree, kippers, Weetabix, grilled tomatoes. Scottish note struck by offering of wild pheasant with haggis. Haggis is pretty good, actually. (How about that, Jean and Lorna?)
  7. Dolores seems to be gaining ground with Galina. Her ardor continues unabated. "Big-boned gal," she said over dinner, sucking down a cosmo. "Lots of meat on her. All I need's a bowl of gravy and a side of potatoes." Our dinner companions quietly excused themselves.
  8. On the other hand, Dolores seems to be attracting something of a following. Several of mousier housewives have begun acting up, sporting cat's-eye glasses, and chasing the cabin boys.
  9. Final exam in college course on Bronze Age Greek art/architecture included labeling plan of ruins at Malia, with explanations. Was delighted to find I remembered enough to skip guided tour and move myself about solo.
  10. Air around Malia smells of licorice. Anise growing wild?
  11. I am allergic to olive trees. Did not know this until landed on island with 100,000 of them.
  12. Is hard to take pictures while sneezing.


Unknown said...

Most Americans are quite enamored of the English because of the accent.

I, on the other hand, have a visceral reaction to that bloody accent. Having worked with a group of some of the cheapest Englishmen on the planet, I grew to hate hearing it. The food sounds not much better than the accent.

I'm always amazed at how much of my one Art History class sticks with me. Glad your education came in handy.

As for olive tree allergies, you'll have to get over that...Mediterranean countries are too good to miss because of incessant sneezing.

Can't wait to see your blurry pictures.

Jean said...

It took me more than 40 years, but I've become quite fond of haggis. Better not tell Dolores how it's made.


Anonymous said...

Again with the boobs . . . Darlin, you're gonna make ME scream! And there's nothing wrong with being big boned. *ahem* Glad to hear you're having a good time.

Angie said...

Joe..we don't all sound the same do we ? I love New York, California ,Massachusetts many yet heck only really loud tourists annoy me .That must apply to us too ? Anyhow I can't take offence because Franklin just proved I am obviously not English as I'd be sitting in the fridge .Your comments 4/5 are just hiarious Franklin.I can tell you all that I loathe the Royal families accents speaks like that except Brian Sewell and he is just awful to listen to.

Angie said...

That cruise company needs a new cook ..where did they get him/her from the days of The Raj ? That food is a cliche ..Nigella, Jaimie ,Nigel, Sophie ,Rick ...there's a cruise ship company who badly need you.Maybe they've watched too many English costume dramas ...try some really good working -class food .

Sandra said...

Dolores let loose with mous housewives... scary. Fun to watch, but scary.

Sally said...

Okay, I also don't get the Brits wearing sweaters on Crete and complaining of draughts. I am also amazed that it was only 80 degrees---when my family left Crete in June 1969, it was already in the 100's, although a little later in the month. We spent 3 days in London on the way back to the US, and froze our $#&^%'s off--despite the "heat wave" they were having (they truly were having a heat wave--must have been in the 70's!). So glad you are having a great time, I remember Malia and the ruins--sigh.

Sally said...

Oh, all the way with knitting--you all don't sound the same, at least to anyone who has been around Brits and Aussies enough. There are so many variations within both groups (Brits and Aussies)---I love them, but have had good experiences with both!

Anonymous said...

You will see a lot of boobies around the Mediterranean. The locals don't think anything of it and you'll just have to get used to it!

Weetabix is one of my favourite breakfast cereals and I was so pleased to find it in one of our local supermarkets when we first got to the States.

People round where I live seem to like my British accent, but sometimes think I am Australian.

Angie said...

Sally ..not to labour a point but you are quite right.I come from the South ( Bognor and Reading)but when Jeff was a student I'd visit him in Manchester ( North-east) and shop keepers wpould ask me to say things gain and ask if I was "posh" .I could not even understand heavy Birmingham ( midlands) but since then ( the early 1980s) everyone is so homogenised .I think bad ,sloppy pronunciation from anywhere is a shame but colloquialisms are interesting.

LornaJay said...

Pseudoephedrine hydrochloride = active ingredient in good anti-allergy (antihistamine) tablets.

Hope something makes a difference - the myxomatosed rabbit look isn't all that appealing!

Anonymous said...

The anise must be for ouzo production ...

Anonymous said...

Franklin, haggis is scrapple made with lamb unmentionable bits and oatmeal rather than pig unmentionable bits and cornmeal.
We Philadelphians never find haggis strange.

Jane said...

Been lurking since hearing your CastOn podcast. Just a HELLO! to say I'm enjoying your travels and esp. Dolores--and the uppity Dolores tee I got for my birthday last month.

Mel said...

Had I to choose between the two, I would far prefer being allergic to olive pollen than to the fruit or, Heaven forfend, the oil.

While in Sicily, I highly recommend that you try to find some castelvetrano olives. They are heavenly, smooth and buttery in flavor - my absolute favorite.

Dana S. Whitney said...

Perhaps the crumbly ruins of Malia reminded the Brits of scones? I do enjoy grilled tomatoes.... and Greek Adonis replicas.
Where should we send your Claritin?

dpaste said...

Using every ounce of restraint in order to not make a bad "Cretin" pun.

Sweet Camden Lass said...

It's not just the matrons that do it. It's ridiculously hot round here, but I was seriously considering a cardigan about 5.30 pm.

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