Life in Cyprus - October 2003

2nd October:

All seems to be well after our four-week trip to the UK. It's not as hot as it was when we left of course, but still warm and sunny. Everything went smoothly, all our luggage arrived, our car (which friends had borrowed while we were away) was waiting for us at the airport, and we got home about 3am. We're all rather tired today of course but I think we got four or five hours sleep. The cats are pleased to see us, and Tim in particular is looking forward to getting back into his various group activities.

3rd October:

I spoke too soon. The heavens opened, and we had a most torrential downpour and thunderstorm! More rain than we saw during our entire month in the UK. However it cleared up within a few hours.

8th October:

On Saturday the Greek Evangelical Church had its annual Autumn Fair, attracting hundreds of local children to bouncy castles and other activities. The boys were both helping at one of the booths, and Tim was playing keyboard with Narrow Gate, the youth band, despite having missed all the September practices! I gather it went fairly well.

Daniel learns to use poiA couple of days later, we were privileged to meet yet more home educators from the UK, who were on holiday in Cyprus. This time it was Wendy and family, who run the excellent Educationsense site. They came and spent a day with us, mostly chatting outside as it was warm and sunny. 

Wendy showed Daniel how to make 'poi' for warming up his muscles before juggling - and doing some impressive routines as well. They used tennis balls, old socks, and string - and after a brief demonstration, Daniel picked up the basics without too much difficulty. He's going to do some online research to find out more.

13th October:

Our garden in October looking bareThe weather has been very pleasant in the past week. It's around 27-28C in the daytime, down to a pleasantly cool 18-ish overnight. Just about ideal, really, if only it would last! Still, it doesn't usually start to get chilly till at least mid-November, sometimes not till mid- December.  The garden is reasonably tidy, but very brown after the long, hot summer. 

The boys are not yet fully back in the swing of their various activities, but seem to be quite busy already. Daniel has decided to be in the Antidote Theatre Christmas production - it's not a pantomime this time, but a play for children called 'The Dancing Bear'. He's going to be a star (twinkling variety), apparently; not a huge part, but something like the genie in Disney's Aladdin that was played by Robin Williams. Rehearsals have started so that's occupying him, not as much as the 'Frog Prince' did last year but still a fair amount of time. 

Daniel has also been promoted to playing with the 'first' clarinets in the municipal band, after being with the 'seconds' for the past year, and the 'thirds' for a couple of years before that. He was beginning to get a bit bored of the band so I hope this will renew his enthusiasm. Apparently some of the long-standing clarinet players have left, or moved on. With his clarinet re-padded, and a new mouthpiece, Daniel's a lot happier with it.

Richard will be in Egypt until Sunday morning, which means he misses his and Daniel's joint birthday for the first time. He had hoped to be able to come back Thursday morning early, but things haven't been going too well with the Internet radio station, and there's really no way he can leave any earlier. So we'll probably have a celebration of sorts on Sunday, although Richard is likely to be incredibly tired as the flight gets in around 8am... meaning he has to check in at Cairo around 4am, so he usually doesn't get any sleep at all.

25th October:

Life here is almost back to its normal busy self, although Tim hasn't yet phoned to arrange his tennis or guitar lessons, and Daniel hasn't yet arranged his Greek lessons! But life seems to rush by full of action, and suddenly it's the weekend again.

Richard was in Egypt for 10 days, including his birthday, but eventually the Internet radio station was launched and he came back last Sunday, very tired as ever, but just about caught up with sleep now. Unfortunately his laptop computer got a nasty virus just before he left, as he hadn't updated AVG recently enough. He managed to heal it mostly, but a couple of important programs refused to work so he's had to do a major reinstall, which seems to have been going on all week with all the various programs he runs. At least he's got Word working again.

The weather is still fairly warm, about 28C in the daytime, and down to 16 or so overnight, so cool enough to need a light cover. Ideal really, even a bit on the warm side sometimes, but no doubt it will get cooler soon enough. There's a thunderstorm predicted for Tuesday, which is a little worrying as our church currently has no roof! It has needed doing for a long time, as it still had the original roof which was put on about 100 years ago, and was leaking quite badly by the end of last winter. I gather the whole structure needed repairing: they couldn't just replace a few tiles, so this is major work - and as ever, in Cyprus, it happens quite slowly. I gather it was very dusty inside on Friday, but was being cleaned today for the services tomorrow.

Tim's going to be busy playing the piano tomorrow - our service at 9am, then the monthly joint communion service at 12.30, then a Christmas choir practice at 5pm. He has been asked officially to play the piano in the concert this year, so at least he won't be doing it at the last minute as he did last year.

Last night the youth group did what we used to call a 'Tramps' Supper' , or 'Progressive meal' - ie going to one home for a starter, another home for the main course, and somewhere else for puds. However this one went by the rather clever name of 'Grub crawl'! Afterwards they went to someone's house and got back about 11pm. This evening they had the boys' Bible study here, which finished about half an hour ago - however they're going down to the sea-front at nine, and will no doubt have another late night, so just as well we get the extra hours tonight.

30th October:

The weather seems to have 'broken' here at last, after a really very pleasant October. On Tuesday it was 'Ochi Day' ('ch' pronounced as in 'loch', meaning 'no') which meant the band marching, and parades of all the schools, Scouts etc. Also our church was being re-roofed and had just had the wooden part put on, but nothing waterproof. Thunderstorms and rain were predicted for Tuesday, but thankfully the rain didn't happen or it would have wrecked the roof, and also would have been a real problem for the thousands of people out marching!

However it was extremely windy all day, and overnight the temperature dropped so that yesterday it didn't get any warmer than about 16C, quite a shock to the system when it had been 26-28 for the previous month! Richard went from tee-shirt to a sweatshirt AND a fleece, as there was quite a biting wind too. However today was a bit warmer, and the sun came out; the forecast is for warmer weather again in the next few days, so I suppose winter hasn't actually arrived yet. I'm not sorry that it's a bit cooler, since it had been really quite humid, surprisingly so for October.

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