Today is Good Friday for the Western church. However in Cyprus, where the majority are (at least nominally) Greek Orthodox, Good Friday will be in five weeks' time. They have only had two weeks of Lent, so far.
Since the state and church are very tied together on this island, there will be public holidays on Good Friday and Easter Monday in five weeks time, but not today or Western Easter Monday.
Some years the two Easters coincide; it's a pity, really, that we can't all adopt the same calculation of dates, but I suppose nobody wants to compromise. Five weeks is the furthest apart they can be (apparently); it doesn't happen all that often.
It's really rather strange when it does, though. For instance, Easter eggs have only just started appearing in the supermarkets; and even then, only a small selection. There are usually lots of Cadbury chocolate eggs, with different bars included, but not this year. Not yet, anyway - they'll probably appear in the next week or two.
I didn't see any hot cross buns yet, either, which is a bit odd as they had them in the supermarkets over Christmas. Perhaps other ex-pats, more traditional than we are, have bought them all. I know I could make hot cross buns, but having tried once, it's a lot of effort for a result that's not nearly so good as the ready-made variety.
Tim's church, St Helena's Anglican, had a Maundy Thursday light supper with Communion last night, and the traditional three-hour meditation service today. As the church musician, he had to be present for both, and stayed for the entire three hours. At the Community Church, where I usually go, there was an evening Good Friday service, at which Daniel was asked to play clarinet. He and Tim go to the youth group which meets in the Community Church hall anyway, so it was no problem for Daniel to go to the service and miss the first part of youth group.
Our house group, which usually meets here on a Friday evening, was cancelled as some of the others were going to the service, but I decided not to go. So Richard and I had a peaceful evening at home with the cats. The house feels very empty without the boys here... but we'll have to get used to it, as Daniel has only a month of his furlough left, and Tim will be off to university in the UK in late Summer.