Although Moscow was a little cold for me and Ziggy, we were more than happy to leave for a warmer climate. A place like Athens, Greece with it's history, beaches, and food was just the ticket too. After leaving the airport, we headed north up Attica Road and the sites were bigger than life. We just saw Athens up to this point on TV. But it was amazing.
Driving through Athens was really something. I kept wanting to stop but Ziggy had to see the beach. I told her it was too chilly to swim, but she wanted to see it so I had the cabbie pull over and snapped this shot.
We then headed to an outdoor cafe where we were serenaded by a fellow and his guitar. He sang authentic Greek songs that left Ziggy teary eyed. Ziggy sang for a little while but the owner came over and asked her to stop. I tried to explain without hurting her feelings, but she didn't take it too well. I told her after dinner, I would take her to a place where she could entertain me all she wanted to. That seemed to make her fell better.
I asked the waiter to bring us a house specialty and he brought us a big bowl of Mydia me Tomata Kai Skordo (Mussels with Tomato and Garlic). They were terrific. I asked for the recipe but the owner said no. He said it was a secret. Just as we started to leave, a man came up to us and told us he was an ex-dishwasher and knew the recipe and offered to sell it to me for 5 bucks American. I said ok. Here's the recipe.
Mydia me Tomata Kai Skordo
Mussels with Tomato and Garlic
3-4 Clove Garlic (Sliced)
2.20 LB Mussels
2-3 Teaspoon Olive Oil
1-2 Pinch Parsley (To Taste)
1-2 Tablespoon Pepper (To Taste)
2-3 Pinch Salt (To Taste)
2-3 Medium Tomatoes (Finely chopped)
6 oz White Wine
Wash the mussels thoroughly.
Brown the garlic in the oil. Add the mussels and stir well. Pour in the wine and stir. Add the tomatoes, parsley and seasonings. Boil for 20 minutes.
Serve warm with fresh parsley.
Now that was worth the 5 bucks I'll tell ya. Ziggy was all excited about where I was going to take her to sing and I didn't want to tell her yet so I blindfolded her. When I took off the blindfold, we were at the Acropolis Theater in Athens, Greece. She was so happy. She took to the stage with the poise of an old pro. Frank Sinatra would have been so proud. She thought it was only going to be me but when she turned around, she saw hundreds of people all around her. We weren't in the seats, but high up at the top. She froze there for a few seconds and then let it all hang out. I just happened to have my little recorder with me. Click the play button, or, the picture to hear Ziggy sing at The Acropolis and the crowds' appreciation.
After signing autographs and posing for pictures, I told Ziggy it was time to move on to Bombay, India. She had her 15 minutes in the spotlight and if she wanted to ride an elephant, it was time to go. Watching the Animal Planet Channel religiously as she had done for 10 years, elephants always amazed her. But was an elephant ready for Ziggy? That's.... another..... story.