Little did I know he had been in Greece the whole time! It is Easter this coming Sunday, and the island of Mykonos is packed with families, tourists and locals. At 9:30pm, everyone on Mykonos gathered at a church by my house. The gypsy kids were passing out long candles and then the bells of the churches began to ring.
“What is going on?” I asked one of my friends from last summer.
“The priests are carrying a casket representing Jesus, because today he died. If you follow the casket all over town, your sins will be forgiven.”
“Bingo.” I said with a smile.
Now, I am not much of a sinner, but there is always room for forgiveness from Jesus!
So I followed Jesus around town for awhile, desperately trying to avoid being caught on fire by everyone’s carelessness with their candles. It was a very beautiful ceremony. I have never experienced anything like it before. The Greek Orthodox priests carry flags of red and gold with Jesus and virgin mary. They sing songs of remorse and grieve for the deceased Jesus. Behind the flags, there is a large thrown like casket that is carried and covered with the most vibrant and beautiful flowers. That represents Jesus. Behind that, are the followers, the people singing songs and holding their lit candles. The followers snaked all throughout the streets of Mykonos and lined the walkways with candle light.
It was almost surreal walking with them because people were standing on the balconies above throwing flower pedals and lighting their candles. I took a side alley to get out of the parade, and wanted to catch the action by the port. While trying to bypass the commotion, I found another Jesus! This time he was accompanied by a marching band of 5 year olds and children priests! There were other assortments of flower caskets and flags.
The Easter celebration continues all weekend.
I woke up today and while walking through town to the beach, I encountered the most traumatizing thing. A whole lamb, skinned, head in tact, eye balls clouded over, tongue hanging from it’s mouth and wrapped in plastic over an old Greek man’s shoulder. Gross. Makes me want to set all the lambs free. Anyway, the island is filled with sunshine and every building is freshly painted white. Too white in fact, it blinds me. I am really liking my little house. Of course it is not the dream house I lived in last summer, but it is my own space and very close to where I will be working once again this year.
I am just so happy to be in the sun and loving life.