End of week 2 in Heraklion. This past week went by much faster than the first. I think it is because I finally understand the bus system and how the hospital works. This week is Easter for the Greek Orthodox religion, which means that most doctors are on holiday and that the entire town of Heraklion is shut down. It also means that the residents are running the hospital, which allows us to get done rounds about an hour earlier than before.
Thursday was a fun day. Dr. P took Jens, heather and I to a retirement home, where we dyed Easter eggs with the elderly patients. It was really interesting how they dye eggs. First they attach a leaf to an egg, then they wrap the egg tightly in pantyhose, and finally they dip it into a bucket of dye. If you do this correctly it will leave a perfect imprint of a leaf, if you do it like I did then the egg will be completely dyed and an old Greek woman will yell at you.
While I was there I learned about the nursing home and it’s inhabitants. 6 of the patients were formerly homeless, so the charity was paying for all of their treatment. The rest of the patients contributed very little and a majority of the money comes through charity events. All of the patients are separated into two wings, one for men and one for women, regardless if they are married or not. I thought this was interesting because I would not want to spend the last years of my life separated from my spouse.
Easter week is very interesting to watch. Last night the entire town set out from three separate churches carrying their own Jesus on the cross. After circling the city they all met in the town center. This meeting happened at 10:30-11 o’clock at night, which was a little too late for me. They also lot candles with a special fire that they flew in from Israel. I feel like the Greeks take Easter way more seriously than we do in the United States.
I am not staying in Heraklion this weekend because they entire city is shut down. Heather and I are currently traveling to Santorini island to spend the weekend. So far it has been a difficult journey full of ferry cancelations and delayed flights. I am currently stuck in the Athens airport, hoping to catch the last flight tonight. Wish me luck.