In the Western church, today is Pentecost Sunday. We used to call it Whitsun - I'm not quite sure why it changed. I think tomorrow is still a public holiday in the UK (Whit Monday) but not in Cyprus. Pentecost here will be in five weeks time, since Greek Easter was only a fortnight ago. And Pentecost in Cyprus is a huge festival, with a week-long seafront fair, fireworks, parades and a regatta. It's known as Kataklysmos, and celebrates not just Pentecost, but Noah's flood.
However, the Protestant churches in Cyprus have made something of an effort to make Pentecost special. On Friday night there was a big African celebration in Antidote Theatre in Larnaka; last night there was a big Anglican-organised celebration in the amphitheatre at Dirinia, a little beyond Agia Napa.
Big celebration services are not really our style, but the youth group went to some of the African celebration on Friday - it's just over the road from where they meet - and the youth band were playing in yesterday's celebration. Richard had been asked to do the PA, so he went too. We had visitors staying with us, who weren't particularly keen, and I didn't really want to go either, so we stayed here.
This morning I took our visitors to St Helena's Anglican church in Larnaka; Tim was playing the piano, and the service focussed on Pentecost.
Our guests had to be at the airport by 1.45pm so we had an early lunch. Tim didn't want to cook - he knew he would be tired after last night - so we went to our favourite takeaway place, 'New York', for some roast chicken, roast potatoes, stuffed vegetables and various salads, and ate around 12.30.
On the way to the airport, I was pleased to see that the Salt Lake, which had been completely dry since about March, had water in it once again. The heavy rain on Thursday must have had more effect than we realised.
More visitors are arriving tomorrow evening, so I stripped the guest flat beds and put the sheets and towels on to wash in the afternoon, then hung them out on the line - I hope they'll be dry by the morning. It's been sunny since Friday morning, but not as warm as usual for this time of year - a very pleasant 23C during the daytime. If only it would stay this way!