I saw an appeal by the Green Party in Sunday's Cyprus Mail 'Greens warn against Green Monday Mess'.
Today is Green Monday – or Clean Monday, in Greek – and most Cypriots load their cars with hampers of vegetables, salads, smoked salmon, prawns, and halwa – and wine and brandy – and take to the hills and fields for picnics. Unfortunately they tend to leave their detritus behind, hence the Greens' appeal. The number of traffic accidents also rises today with inebriated merry-makers negotiating roads at greater speed than normal thanks to the liquid portion of the picnics.
Today is the first day of Lent, and weather permitting, everyone is outside enjoying nature and scoffing their greens. No dairy, no animal products, no eggs may pass our lips today, and even non-believers tend to get into the spirit of the moment the way that many otherwise non-observant Muslims still keep the Ramadan fast. Although Best Beloved (it must be admitted) has already enjoyed a breakfast sandwich of leftover steak.
It is one of the nicer holidays of the year. Children fly kites, families enjoy each others company and the beauty of the countryside. I'm not sure what we are doing. Usually we join with Best Beloved's family, but we went to Bil (Brother in Law's) house yesterday for the season's last meat meal and joined a slew of cousins and friends at a long table and out in the field flying kites in the windy sunshine.
Today the weather is colder, chilly and grey. More snow fell on the mountains last night and the air has too much of a bite to make an outdoor picnic much fun.
Besides, we have to pack for our trip to England tomorrow. I think it will be a quiet day.