This week's blog post is from Pauline Manos, my close friend and collaborator, my especially zealous friend, as I called her in a post last Spring. Last week she told me of a heartwarming story of how four women in three different continents managed to make someone's 21st birthday a special one, thanks to their Zelos connection. This round-the-world story of love through food just goes to show you that even if we're celebrating our special moments a little bit differently these days, they can still shine a light on all the wonderful connections that bring us together.
It's Week Six of our quarantine/shelter-in-place/lockdown, whatever it might be called in your neck of the woods. The beginning was marked by an almost frenetic energy, as we dealt with a new reality - is the pantry stocked, are the prescriptions filled, how we do entertain the kids? Then things settled down, we got used to webinars and online learning and video-conferencing, but also catching up more with friends and family.
It was during one of those catch-ups that my Honolulu-based friend, Anukriti, asked me for a favor. Her son, a Marine stationed far across the Pacific in Okinawa, was soon to turn 21, and she wanted to know if our Zealous Artisan, Pamela, could help her make it a special one for him. Regular readers of this blog might remember Pamela and her Okinawa-based Little Greek Kitchen from our profile of her in Fall of 2018. She's an incredible woman, with a passion for Greece that is probably greater than mine...and I'm Greek-American!
Pamela told me that she had to close her restaurant last month but was delivering take out orders to her customers, which was helping her get by. Plus, she told me, she'd already made a special Greek Easter care package delivery to the local base! A a Greek mother back in the States reached out to her through Facebook and asked her to deliver an Easter tsoureki (sweet bread) to her soldier son...and Pamela threw in some souvlaki, too! I should have known that Pamela would be making tsoureki this Easter; after all, she'd shared another gluten free bread recipe with us when we first met her (I, needless to say, am NOT a bread maker!).
I just loved Pamela's Easter story and I knew she could definitely help my friend Anu send a little bit of love to her son on his birthday. Pamela came through, with a special delivery of all the goodies for a "make-your-own gyros" party for a lucky bunch of guys on the base. When Anu called to tell me about it, we marveled that her son's 21st birthday celebration in Okinawa came to him via his mother in Honolulu, Maria in Cincinnati, me in Brussels...and all the wonderful food of Greece that inspired Pamela in the first place! Now THAT is a Zealous Story 😊
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In this blog, we want to share with you stories of people and places and things that reflect zēlos, that Greek energy and enthusiasm that characterizes all we do. We hope you enjoy finding out more about this small, resilient, fascinating country and all it offers and inspires.
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