Thursday, March 24, 2005

Out and About Locally

We usually go to the supermarket once a week in the car, on Friday mornings. But tomorrow is a public holiday - not because it's Good Friday (and hence a British public holiday) but because it's one of the Cypriot national days. That means most shops, including the supermarket, will be shut and there will be marching parades along the sea-front.

So we went this morning instead. I was pleased to see that there was a reasonable selection of chocolate Easter eggs; I had wondered if there would be any in time for the Western Easter, since the Eastern/Orthodox Easter isn't until May 1st. There were also some hot cross buns in packs of four, so I bought some for tomorrow, although everyone's going to be so busy that I've no idea when we'll actually eat them!

Sometimes people ask me what kinds of foods we can get at the supermarket. We can get most regular groceries - flour, fruit juice, washing powder, cans of tomatoes etc, and a fair selection of fresh fruit and veggies. There are organic beans and lentils, and an increasing number of other organic foods available, although as they're mostly shipped from Canada or Mexico, it's more environmentally sound to buy non-organic ones from Cyprus or Egypt. A difficult decision.

In addition there's a meat counter and a delicatessan with cheeses, humous and other salads, and of course refrigerated and frozen foods. Much like a British supermarket really, except that there's far less convenience food. This is all to the good as it's not very nutritious to eat processed food, but occasionally it would be nice just to pick up a ready-made quiche!

I bought three large bags of oranges today (25c per kilogram) in addition to everything else we need for the next week, and the hot cross buns, and a couple of Easter eggs for the boys. The total bill came to £80 - that's Cyprus pounds, so about £90 sterling, or $150 US. I don't know if this is high or low for a family of four, but it's about our normal weekly supermarket bill.

In the afternoon I thought I might cut some more of the lawn - so far Tim and I have done about half of it this week, and it could probably be finished in another hour, but instead I decided to walk to the town to collect our snail-mail. We don't have doorstep delivery here; there are American style letter-boxes next to the street, but they're not at all secure, so we have all our mail sent to a PO Box which is about a mile away, at the far end of the town.

I was pleased to find a DVD which I ordered from on Sunday night had arrived already, along with some photos from the UK; I sent the films back with my brother when he left just over a week ago, so that's fairly good service too. Plus a card and a couple of statements. There's more coming from but I didn't expect anything to arrive until after Easter so it was a bonus to have one early.

I'm pretty tired now; Daniel had to leave the house at 6.30am this morning as the theatre group had a performance in Paphos which is about an hour and a half's drive away. So I set my alarm for just before 6am to ensure he got up, and once I was up I knew I wouldn't get back to sleep.

Dan got back about 2.30pm, then both boys were out at 3.30 for a church music group rehearsal. They got back about 5.00 and we ate at 6.00 as they were both out yet again at 6.30 - Dan to a drama rehearsal, Tim to a youth band practice. Life tends to be fairly hectic in our household and the timing of meals is quite complicated at times, since we all like to eat together whenever possible (and usually succeed).

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