What, you may ask, is a kourelou? (kourelou-DES being plural)
Its Grenglish for greek rag rugs.
I love them! I want some to take back to Australia to make outdoor cushions out of like they did at the cafe/bar we went to last night.
How gorgeous are these? Take a standard footstool and cover it in a kourelou = instant cute.
And this? A built-in stone seat with kourelou covered cushions. Its 'greek chic' as opposed to 'shabby chic'.
I forgot to take photos of the pallet couches lining the outside wall and its kourelou covered cushions. As it was I was walking around the bar taking photos of everything.
"Its ok.... I have a blog."
Like having a blog gives me license to behave like a Japanese tourist.
But the bar was cute. They had pallets for everything outside. This big outdoor table/bench/thing.
The outdoor bar:
The outside wall:
I LOVED the collection of old colourful trays on the pallet bench outside. They had them on the steps as well. I figure it was like a portable table, you grab a kourelou cushion and sit anywhere you want with a tray to hold your drinks.
Inside, the bar had some nice simple light shades which looked they were made from twisted cane painted white.
And the decor was a mix of modern, fashionable and the contents of old Aunty Evronia's house.
The old wooden chairs were gorgeous. Distressed just right. The tables... not quite so good. Someone should have taken the sander out of this guy's hand a couple of hours earlier.
I mean really. Shabby chic is all about making things look old, like they've been used for many years by generations of french peasants. Not like someone had an accident with a runaway grinder.
I loved the detail in the tiling though. Plain tiles on the floor and then a strip of mismatched tiles. Gorgeous.
Down on the corner of our street in Athens there's a house which hasn't changed since I was a kid. Its owned by some Boo Radley type family. Seriously. We were scared of the guy who lived here as kids. He's now in his 60s and is still the same creepy guy he was then.
When I walked down to the bus stop yesterday he came out and kept staring at me... I thought maybe he recognised me so I said 'good evening'. He said "What did you just say to me?" in the same tone of voice De Niro used when he asked "Are you looking at me?"
Better stay clear of him and his creepy house. I did, however, manage to sneak in this photo of their gate. I really really wish I could get into that place to see what's in there... I bet they have tons of interesting stuff. I'd need a tetanus shot and maybe a bio-suit to go in there. It looks like no one has swept a floor since sometime before WWII.
This afternoon Petro and I managed to get my code or whatever from the local taxation branch (some people can't afford to go on strike), only to discover my paperwork has the wrong birth date on it so there's another thing I need to run around for when I'm back in Athens later. Oh joy.
I went to visit a couple of friends in the neighbourhood which was great. One of them is my godmother's daughter. I remember her when I was growing up as someone who disliked dogs. She's had dogs in her home, sleeping on her bed, for my last couple of visits now.
That's one thing I DO love about the changes in Greece. People love animals here now. My aunt collects table scraps to feed the stray cats, every second person has a dog they treat like a human and you see people walking dogs everywhere. Its nice. I love that about the new Greece.
The other lady I dropped in to see is an old friend of mom's. Her son and I were born 2 months apart and as babies we played together. We played together a bit as teenagers too, but that's whole 'nother story.
She was so sweet. Telling me how gorgeous I looked and how I looked prettier every time she sees me (her cataracts are getting worse) and that I look younger than her son. That was nice. It feels good to get compliments.
I love some of these old ladies. They're just so down to earth. She was telling me about how her son and daughter-in-law took her to one of the new-fangled restaurants where they give you all these glasses and cutlery and you're too afraid to touch anything in case you use the wrong thing. She hated the food. They said she must try some spiced fig jam cause it was so good. Nope. She'd rather go to the local taverna where the food is real and they don't put spices in the jam. Well, they don't serve jam with meat, they serve tzatziki which is how it should be!
To my greek friends: Before I forget! You see that door handle on the blog header? I want one!!! If you know where I can find one, let me know!