02-06-16 Greek Tan

Thursday 2nd June 2016

Lovely in Bangalow and Darling in Dubai,

It’s getting warm here though sea breezes are cool and the water refreshing, a winning combo!! Ninii now has a tan…like last year. And the year before when he came to swim here at 9 months: His annual Greek tan!

I walk him everywhere, mostly in the pram. The only time he is out of it is when we go to the chirren’s playground- he holds my hand crossing the road but he hates it- and when we wander the leafy, shady walkway which hugs the coastline: just pedestrians, certainly no cars.

Today when we spoke, after your gym session Erroll, Kingsley played really well for 2 hours with a fat little girl called Vasilikî (Vicky) and her thin younger brother Spîros. They built sand castles, dug holes, explored rocks, filled old discarded ceramic yoghurt containers with sand and water (there at the beach for beach-going smokers to have somewhere to put out their cigarette butts), and collected twigs.

They were there with their cool young Athenian mum and their YiaYia who ensured all three were safe in the water, say if Kingsley wanted to follow the other kids in when I had just dried myself off and was not wishing to go back in. And our son knows about safety, for when he was ready to dive into the water, he would run to me and ask for his ‘bratsâkia’ (arm bands).

At 2pm he ate his basic brown bread & butter sandwich quickly such was his hunger after swimming though fat Vasilikî kept asking for a bite. I of course fed her and felt obliged to feed her thin brother Spîros sandwich too. They offered Kingsley cherries but he was not interested.  He did however eat two juicy mandarins but I must peel them, remove seeds and any difficult to chew bits.

As we walked home, the perîptero (kiosk) came in sight. Immediate reaction: ‘PAGOTÓ!!’ He called for an icecream. It’s his daily treat after a morning swimming and running non stop: a mini cornetto. Half of it goes down his throat. The other half he smears over his legs and buggy while I do our grocery shop. As such the instant we get home I strip him, and he goes immediately under the shower (with protest), gets dried, plonked in front of cartoons with his milk, and I prepare lunch. Today it was chicken rissole and hot potato chips, salad, olives, crusty bread. He ate at 4pm and by 5pm he is passed out for three hours.

By 7:30/8pm we are back out, at the chirrens playground where we spend the remains of the day with all the other parents and active kids. It is our attempt to run these them like colts in the evening, and ensure they get a good nights sleep.

Southern European/Mediterranean times go something like this:
* wake 9:30am
* milk 10am
* breakfast on balcony 10:30-11:30
* head out 12noon
* snack 2pm
* lunch between 3-4pm
* nap 4:30/5-7 or later
* dinner then head out till 9:30
* home and snack/milk then sleep

So he is receiving around 14 hours sleep in every 24 hours which is the ideal target for his age, and activity level.

Attached is a photo of Louisa pushing K and her excellent son Fîvos on the swings yesterday. She is a great mum to her son, I hear how she reasons with him. Today she is doing Grand Rounds (Accident & Emergency, and Pediatrics) at two hospitals, so her mum has come from Athens to look after Fîvos.

I hope you enjoy receiving my dispatches as much as I enjoy writing them to you both.