Today, Dr. P took us to a nursing home that is funded by the municipality in Heraklion (not belonging to the private sector). This nursing home is also called a “poor house” because of the low fees charged to the residents and the fact that the nursing home has six residents that pay nothing at all to live there. With the nursing home residents, Gordon, myself, and an ERASMUS student named Jennis dyed traditional Greek Easter eggs. As I mentioned before, Greek Orthodox Easter is this upcoming Sunday and is the main holiday in Greece. Today is Holy Thursday here. To dye the Easter eggs, the eggs were hard boiled first. Small leaves and flowers were gathered from outside. We placed the leaves on the eggs and placed a cut piece of panty hoes around the eggs, stretching it tightly around each egg before placing the eggs in the dye. (After several failed attempts) the eggs came out with a beautiful pattern!
Unlike in the USA, we died the eggs red and yellow. The red symbolizes the blood of Christ I’ve read, but I don’t know what the yellow symbolizes. All of the nursing home residents were super sweet and talked to us in Greek (sometimes someone would translate and sometimes not!) One resident was a former nurse and spoke to us for a long time about her life and career before coming here. At the end of our visit, we toured the facility, which included separate men and women’s units as well as a garden with orange and lemon trees and a small vineyard out front. It was such a cool way to meet members of the Heraklion community and get involved in some Greek traditions!