What do you do when you wake up in a new country? If you're the Tates you take stock of what you have, what you need, and what you need to do/get to accomplish the goal of setting up shop. We're a little goal oriented over here.
We live in the city, but in a residential neighborhood. Great for low noise, but not so great for getting places on foot. Enter the rental car. We've driven all over the world on both sides of the road... but after a few harrowing trips, including the time our mirror hit another parked cars mirror at 40 mph (fortunately ours flipped in and theirs stayed on,) I looked at Culin and said, "I will not be driving in this city.)
The work around to the transportation dilemma came from our experience in Paris. Merric was dying to rent the Lime scooters... and when we relented one was a total blast. If we had fun and got places on electric scooters in Paris, why couldn't we use them in Athens? So, we piled into the car of doom, navigated the freeway, and found ourselves at the Greek version of Best Buy to buy a scooter.
What's better than one electric scooter? Two! And while we were at it we purchased a crockpot (an essential item for culinary survival) and a printer. These may seem like lame purchases, but after we got home and set everything up I felt like we were officially living in Greece, not just "staying" here.
The morning after the scooter purchase, Culin took Merric to school and then we took our first Athenian scooter ride. We stopped for freddo cappacinos (cappucinos over ice,) explored and signed up for gym membership (it was called Golden Gym for heaven's sake,) and then picked up produce at the grocery store. All of this was accomplished in an hour and a half... the freedom to get places, slow cook things, workout, and print out documents are now in our grasp... we are officially #winningatgreeklife.
Freddo Capuccinos (I felt very Greek,) the joy of speeding down ancient streets, a post dinner dance party with Merric in our living room.
Surprises/Greek Driving Observations:
Greek gym classes don't have the insane American online sign ups. You just show up for the class. #mindblown
Manifest Destiny is reality - Greeks believe that right away is taken by the most deserving not granted by any ordinance of law. This makes pedestrians the lowest in the pecking order.
A local beach day and then lunch in Kifisia with a half Greek half American family. Merric met the son at camp, and I in a moment of desperation to meet ANYONE gave him a note to take to his mom. The last time I wrote a note on lined paper and folded it up to be passed was in high school. Very silly and yet, very effective.