Sep 10 2007

Getting settled in Hania

Published by at 9:54 am under Crete,Greece

Dear Hania: I don’t know much, but I know I love you. We chose Hania as our Greek destination based on its description in several travel books as “the most beautiful city on Crete.” This statement does not do Hania justice – this is the sort of place you could come to visit, and never leave. In fact, this seems to be the story behind our landlord’s girlfriend, a displaced Scot named Natalie. We’re thankful to have her English-speaking advice on the city, as well as her assistance in translating between ourselves and our landlord, Tiki. Pictures to come soon, as well as more on the new friends we’re making among the locals. In the meantime…

Yoghurt with honeyToday we paid visits to the local markets – that is, the traditional marketplace and the modern supermarket. The traditional market yielded a plethora of delights. We enjoyed a breakfast of yoghurt with honey, and frappé to drink. Frappé is a foamy iced coffee made with Nescafé, and every young person around here seems to drink them non-stop. Greek yoghurt, as it turns out, is very much like cream cheese, and a plate of cream cheese with honey is not something we were very excited to eat with a spoon. Our server rolled his eyes when we asked for bread to spread it on.

Gross rabbitThe best part about the market (or the worst part, if you hear Brittany tell it) was the meat market. Here we saw the decapitated heads of several animals I was unable to identify. I guess I’m used to seeing them attached to their bodies, and wearing skin. My personal favorite was the naked rabbits. For some reason, their furry feet always remain – perhaps for the shopper to use as a talisman*?

We inspired further eye-rolling at our next stop, the supermarket. Apparently, the shopper is expected to weigh their own produce, and print a special sticker with the weight and price to stick on the bag. We were blissfully unaware of this fact until we got to the register, and its grumpy cashier. I can’t really blame her for her mood, since our mistake held up a line that was already very long. All were forced to wait while a second cashier ran our cucumbers back to the produce section, to do the proper weighing and labeling that we had neglected. Also, I don’t think I helped the situation when I tried to say, “I’m sorry” in Greek but in fact said “You’re welcome.” Opa!

The supermarket was not a total loss, however. Kroger, I beseech you, why do you not carry Nestle Crunch cereal? On that same note, Kroger, I thank you for not carrying hot dog-flavor Cheetos.

Brittany would not let my buy either one (she has confiscated most of my Euros) but I will be sure to let you know about oregano potato chips and Mythos, “the Hellenic lager.” For now, adhio!

*See Brittany’s 9/9 entry for more on the regional marketability of talismans.

NEXT: Our arrival in Hania »



10 responses so far

10 Responses to “Getting settled in Hania”

  1. Super Marioon 10 Sep 2007 at 10:50 am

    … wow I was looking at the picture, first thinking it was an arm! But after reading the post (sorry I always look at the pictures first) I realized what it was…. um

    If the next cashier gives you trouble, just let them know you are an international star! Be safe my friend.

  2. Mom (Ben's)on 10 Sep 2007 at 11:12 am

    Promise me ya’ll won’t eat any of those skinned animals!!! I’m loving your website and can’t wait for updates. I love you both!

  3. Alexon 10 Sep 2007 at 2:54 pm

    Greetings from Alumni Hall! Hey, I finally made it. Brittany, I actually wrote down the URL, even though you said it really fast and tried to slur your words. So, I guess I’ll be checking in every now and then!

    p.s… Brit, I loved your reaction to being filmed. I get that response all the time from my wife when I break out the camcorder. Definitely continue to post those videos — loved the first one. Take care of yourselves!

  4. jamieon 10 Sep 2007 at 3:43 pm

    yo ben you need to try the hot dog flavored cheetos and tell me what they are like i really want to know. You said you would try anything once i cant be worse than grapples. love you guys and eat weird skinned animals please. -peace out

  5. Cousin Lisaon 10 Sep 2007 at 6:02 pm

    You guys are very funny. It’s like a comedic travelogue. I want to see photos of your non-american clothes. On videotaping, wind is always very loud! I can tell you’re having a great time, take care of each other!

  6. Dad (Abby's)on 10 Sep 2007 at 8:16 pm

    Today I saw that Hopewell is having a Greek Festival on October 5th – 7th. You should come back and check it out. I’m guessing that the smell of Hopewell will remind you of the frangrant ferry ride.

    Texans won – Schaub had an okay game.
    Jets lost – Jones had about 50 yards rushing
    UVA plays at UNC on Saturday – should be another barn burner!

    Be safe and have fun.



  7. Brittanyon 11 Sep 2007 at 3:28 am

    Hey Alex! Dang! You found me. There’s no escaping the techno-sleuths at Alumni Hall. We are having a great time and are continuing to play around with our camcorder, so expect more videos soon! Hope everyone there is doing well.


  8. Brittanyon 11 Sep 2007 at 3:29 am


    We hate grapples. If you want hot dog flavored cheetos I guess you’ll have to come visit!

  9. Soniaon 12 Sep 2007 at 10:05 pm

    Oh my, Ben…

    Why didn’t Brittany like the bunnies for sale at the meat market? Was it because you slammed the naked little bunny on the table and yelled, “Woman- cook me some grub.” (left THAT part out of the story, didn’t you.)

    What I want to know is, do they sell Dr. Perky?

    In all seriousness, love the blog and thank you so much for sharing it with us! I plan to keep a close eye from afar. Fantastic pictures and my god, aren’t you in for the trip of a lifetime.

  10. Benon 13 Sep 2007 at 3:29 pm

    Hello Sonia! How I miss you (and everyone else at CC) already…

    Sadly, I have so far been unable to find Dr. Perky, Dr. Thunder, Dr. Extreme, or any other generic derivative of Dr. Pepper. What to do???

    Please keep me updated on what you’re up to, and hope to talk to you soon!

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