This thread is too give you and run up to Easter in Roda and Sfakera and the events taking place. Easter falls the same time as the UK this year, Easter Sunday being 16th April.
This week we have Burnt Thursday which is the time Lent begins. Many here, especially the older, observe Lent and will avoid meat until Easter Sunday. In view of this they have a large meat meal the day before fasting begins. In Sfakera there is a bouzouki night on Thursday, they are having pork and lamb chops on the menu as well as grilled meats.
An update and correction on the original post. Lead up to Easter in fact began on 5th February this year with the start of Apokries. This is when the opening of the book of the Triodion takes place (the 3 Holy sacrements).
Thurday 16th is the beginning of Tsiknopempti which marks the final week of meat eating until after Lent. Often known as meat week. Tsikna is the smell of burning meat. Custom for everyone to charcoal grill meat, melt fat over so the smell of 'burning' meat spreads over the village. Nowdays many go to the taverna for this meal and it is accompanied by live music. Others will head to grill rooms. In Roda the grills and Drosia will be busy.
The Tsiknopempti bouzouki night was a great one going on well past 3am, the were several such nites around Roda and the nightclub was open.
Tsiknopempti starts the 2 weeks of Carnival, in the style of Venice. Various events, parades, music, dance, theatre take place in town and the larger villages. It ends with the King Carnival parade on 26th February.
We are now in period known as cheesefare being the last few days when dairy products can be eaten before Lent. Most nights vespers in church, with matins in the mornings. This is last week of Triodion leading up to the fouth and final Sunday of the period, Forgiveness Sunday or Cheesefare Sunday.
Today is Forgiveness Sunday the last day of Apokries which began back on 5th February with the opening of book of the Triodion. Yesterday was the last day to get married in Church until after the end of Lent, in fact old tradition says any marriage on the last day will be an unhappy one! Although Carnival worldwide ends Shrove Tuesday (also called Mardi Gras, that day is not celebrated by Eastern Orthodox so this weekend is the end of Carnival with many larger villages having Carnival today as well as Corfu Town. More of that later.
Well it is grey but with warm winds 19c so Carnival went ahead. Just as i was readying to leave for Nymphes i could hear music, car horns. Shortly the procession of floats, pulled by tractor or 4x4 came into sight and slowly drove past before turning into Sfakera village. Noisey, happy groups dressed in an array of costumes with different themes, playing music, talking through loud hailers. At the end as i predicted was a 15 foot high Donald Trump who clearly was the effigy for the later bonfire. The noise spooked my young dogs who hid in back garden before hiding under bed in house, i stayed to calm them rather than drive to Nymphes content with having seen the floats. Just as the dogs were venturing back outside, 90 minutes or so later the floats returned on the way back and the dogs retreated indoors to hide. At 6.40pm a shower arrived but at least Carnival parades had been completed. Hope the rain clears away for Clean Monday tomorrow which sadly has been affected by poor weather most years recently.
Clean Monday is today and the weather looks fine. Here locals believe it signals the start of spring and it is the start of Lent in the eastern Orthodox Church. Known in Greek as Kathara Deftera.
For the religious observers fasting starts, no meat, fish, eggs, dairy or even oil.
It is a Bank Holiday and it is traditional in Corfu for families to picnic, either on the beach or in the hills, and for the children to fly kites.
The Lenten picnic included vegetables, pulses, greens (hence sometimes called Green Monday), octopus, cuttlefish, squid, prawns and mussels. Accompanied with pickles, taramasalata and the special lenten bread baked this day only called Lagana, large and round and flat like a foucaccia topped with sesame seeds, nice both warm straight from the bakers or cold with picnic.
The fast continues until Easter Sunday. Greeks have 2 breaks in the fast, the traditional one on Palm Sunday but also one on 25th March to celebrate Independence Day.
In the village taverna in Sfakera today they are only serving octopus, squid, cuttlefish, prawns and mussels with the Lagana. The same will be elsewhere in tavernas.
Today is Shrove Tuesday or Mardi Gras or pancake day not observed by the Eastern Orthodox Church. For the Christian and Catholic church it is a movable day 7 weeks prior to Easter Monday. Shrove derives from the word shrive, meaning absolve as it is last day for 'fat eating ' before their Lent. Traditionally people eat pancakes and in many countries there are Carnivals.
Looking back on Clean Monday, glorious sunshine this year and slight breeze ideal for kite flying. Many families out for lunch rather than picnic, Drosia was packed, the coffee shops full as many were also out walking. Others ventured to Acharavi where some Tavernas, such as Lemon Garden, opened for the day. The open bars in Roda, Tropicana, Nemos, Oscars and Pirates were all busy. There were a few family groups picnicking on the beach, one group using the shelter at the taxi rank to lay out their food.
Back in the village, To Neon, was also with families having a Lenten meal.o
Today is Ash Wednesday but again there are no special significance in the Eastern Orthodox Church. In the Catholic Church after mass, whilst up near the alter, the Priest puts a cross of ash on your forehead.The ash comes from the burning of the palm leaves used the previous Palm Sunday. This blessing, you are not meant to wash the ash away, is followed by all observing Catholics.
For the Christian and Catholic faiths today is the beginning of Lent.
janiemou: Are you surviving the rain Kaz?
Jun 12, 2019 16:35:23 GMT 2
kaz: Just about janiemou..its raining now,,grey skies and windy its " s'windy, loved your pics of the sea....not been up on the sea wall since accident, maybe soon,getting around I bit better now............rain just stopped!! strange weather?? take care xx .
Jun 13, 2019 10:30:37 GMT 2
kaz: Hope you are both well Jan & Steve and enjoying the Roda sun!!!....the days here have been dry but humid,phew..........not able to get to Roda again this year ( I miss it so much) never mind, one day..take care, love Kaz & Rosie xxx
Jul 15, 2019 16:43:37 GMT 2
janiemou: Hi Kaz,I had pretty good weather when on quick trip back to the UK, not been so good since I have been back. Hopefully it will be better tomorrow.
Jul 16, 2019 14:36:06 GMT 2
kaz: Hi Janiemou.........as you may have heard, we had a Heat Wave for two days here.....my was it hot?? shouldn't complain though only it hasn't stopped raining to-day...we can't win can we?? Hope you and Steve are keeping well and still enjoying life.........
Jul 27, 2019 16:04:20 GMT 2
kaz: Not able to make Roda again this year.....family holidays in progress!!!So it will be just me n Rosie up on the sea wall!!! take care..love Kaz xx
Jul 27, 2019 16:07:29 GMT 2
janiemou: Oh Kaz, we will miss you, as will Roda.
Jul 27, 2019 17:37:57 GMT 2
kaz: I will miss you to...............one day a?
Aug 3, 2019 13:00:50 GMT 2
kaz: Nice cooling rain here in Kent after 2days of sweltering SUN...shouldn't complain though should I.....I have friends on their way to Roda at the wkend staying at the Afroditi, I expect you will know them..........just wish I could be there with them. Enjoy
Aug 28, 2019 20:34:49 GMT 2
kaz: Just got on my 'puter..thanks for missing me!!...I am there in spirit (always)just wish my BODY was !!!never mind, next year with luck ( before I have to use a walking frame!!!)glad the weather is good for you all....hold on, just want to wipe the tears
Sept 11, 2019 19:50:02 GMT 2
kaz: Now my puter is playing up.......I cant win
Sept 11, 2019 19:53:37 GMT 2
kaz: Hope Forum meetings are going well?? I miss them too xxxx
Sept 11, 2019 20:01:03 GMT 2
kaz: Weather in Kent is very hot...........still not as nice as being in Roda!!!
Sept 17, 2019 16:19:06 GMT 2