Monday, September 8, 2008

Go Godfather… and my friends are around again (Sat 06 Sep, -19days to go)

(posted from Athens airport: 05:54 8-Sep-08)

I’m back “home” – laptop clock posts the time at 00:56 but that’s my Geneva laptop, so in Athens it’s already +1hr. (which I guess it means I am also 1 hour closer to Dubai…) I just finished helping my mom tidy up the place – had my friends over for a “farewell drink”. It wasn’t a party, not at least in the way people are used to me throwing parties: booze and music of course but it was fewer people. I enjoyed it so much. I love these big parties we’ve been throwing with friends, like the Black/White/Red big bash every December around X-mas. But this was different – it actually managed to cover a different kind of need, slightly more special. You see, as I just said, lot-of-people parties are great, a confirmation that a large group of people want to come over, drink and listen to our music – oh and see/talk to us. And that happens. And it’s great. But where I’ve failed is seeing and talking to them. Some I just manage to greet at the door, offer them a drink and talk to them again as they pass their “thank you’s” on the way to the door. How can you have a proper individual discussion with 60 people that are interested in knowing what you are doing, if you like the place you have been living at for the past 5 years, if you are happy etc?

Well you can’t, it’s impossible.

But not tonight. Dia, Thanassis, Aris, Evi, Petros, Vicky, Kostas, George, Irini, George, bro, mom where enough for a true Close and Real encounter (read my 2nd posting…) George T’s birthday was a wonderful way to make this day extra special – being in Dubai I don’t think he’s spent one birthday with his family and old friends the past 5 years. Having him here makes things so special – besides my business trips to Dubai, I managed to see him once a year: around Christmas.
Tonight was wonderful, we spent some good time together – they asked me about the Madonna concert and about my upcoming trip. Some amazed, some doubtful on the choice of destinations, some curious on how a “Round-the-world” ticket works. But that wasn’t important, the key was that I could really sit down and talk. I had missed that for quite a while. The more I answered questions and told my plan, the more I started realizing the colossal implications of the trip on myself, the time I will spend travelling and the time until I see some of these people again.

Did I tell you why I am back “home”? I am here to give a little boy his name. HE will be called Vassili, like his grandfather and I am the godfather. In greek the word “koumbaros” would be something close to the English equivalent of the “best man”. He’s the person that is called “temoin”/witness in French, but he can also be a “Nonos”, the godfather of a child. And for the past two years every September I’ve had the opportunity to be a “best man” for two couple that are very close to me. And now, this September, again, I am back to give a name to the couple’s firstborn. How wonderful, what a big responsibility “Koumbaros for hire” as I jokingly say sometimes.. At the same time it’s the perfect opportunity to see my close and real, and say goodbye to them, with confidence that I will be seeing them “next year”. After the 25th of September, I will set foot back in Europe, only on Jan 8th if all goes as planned.

My mom is worried about the trip J I am slightly more worried about the first part – Latin America/Argentina/Chile, where I will be travelling alone at a place where I’ve never seen before without knowing absolutely anyone there. How exciting… however at this point I am personally more concerned about the fact that I didn’t manage to get an automatic visitor’s visa for Australia, which represents 1/5 of my travel time, a place I’ve always wanted to go, a place where I have at least 2 good work colleagues I want to see again and an apparently very special person I’ve never personally met but really want to see. Let’s see – If I’ve managed to get a 10-year Visa for the “land of the free and the home of the brave”, Australia should be reasonably manageable. After all, I don’t want to stay there, at least not yet because I haven’t seen the place.

I’ve moved to the balcony, Hotel California from the laptop’s speakers, and I realize it is quite late. Tomorrow we’re driving down to Loutraki to see most of my other friends & colleagues attending the christening. And after that I only have another 36 hours left in this country till I revisit it… next year!

1 comment:

Stratis said...

Kostas! Your little cousin has just discovered your amazingly detailed and brutally honest blog and it's very exciting! Can't wait to read the stories from South America. I won't have to read the South African chapter, that's because I'll be with you for some of it! Awesome! We're so excited- I think the last time I actually saw you was when we were sleeping on the floor of Koula's old apartment and you woke us up to say goodbye. That was after our Mytilene trip.
Good luck for the trip and I'll see you in December.

Stratis