Life out of Cyprus - January 2000

So, January 1st 2000 came and went, and the world didn't come to a standstill. Some computers couldn't work out what the date was, but a simple re-set at the control panel seemed to fix that problem. Water and electricity continued working, aeroplanes continued flying, cash machines continued dispensing money. Supermarkets re-opened on the 2nd or 3rd, and the people who had stockpiled enough for several months probably felt mildly foolish. As did those who had sold everything and gathered on a mountain in the expectation of the end of the world.

We had always said we would spend Christmas 1999 and the new year back home in the UK after our first two years in Cyprus, and that's exactly what we did. We were able to live in our own house in Birmingham, in between other families living there, and we saw as many friends and relatives as we could manage. We had a wonderful Christmas with my parents - who live only a few miles away from us - and my brothers and sister and their families, and also my one remaining grandmother who is now over 90 but still in excellent spirits.

We celebrated the new year/century/millennium in a low-key fashion with a party at our church in Birmingham. Quite a few people were away, but it was good to see some old friends and play some silly games. Someone had brought a television, so shortly before midnight we watched various fireworks around the world, then had a short communion service. As we drove home we could see fireworks locally, but as we were all tired we decided to sleep rather than try to fight our way through the crowds to get a closer view.

When school term started again, Tim donned Daniel's old school uniform and spent four weeks with 'his' class, now Year 6, at St Francis School. I went in and helped out with a couple of other classes as I used to, and Daniel came in too a few times, mostly helping the computer expert with problems and maintenance. All the staff remarked on how tall he had grown!

Daniel's bunk bed and storage in the UKWe've also done a great deal of sorting within our house. I touched up a bit of gloss paintwork that was looking rather tatty, and we went through various boxes we had packed away. We got rid of quite a bit to charity shops, and packed up some more books and other useful items to take back to Cyprus.  This photo shows Daniel's room with his cabin bed and storage, and the few books that remained. 

Tim's bed in the UKNow we know we're staying - at least two more years, maybe considerably longer - there is more that we want to have out in Cyprus. Our house is going to be used by another pastor and his wife for the next year or two, from Trinity Church in Rowheath Park (over the road from our house) who will move in at the end of the month, when we'll go and spend our last few days with my parents. Since the boys' rooms will be used by children around their ages, we tried to make them look welcoming.

It was cold, of course, in the UK. But the central heating works effectively and it would probably feel a great deal colder back in Cyprus. A lady from our church there is staying in our house while we're away, looking after our cats; we've encouraged her to use as much heat as she can be I expect it will still be chilly with the marble floors and high ceilings. By the time we return (9th February) I hope the winter will be coming to an end!

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