Have you ever seen that movie "My big fat Greek wedding" with John Corbett? It is a movie from 2002 about a Greek woman living in America. She falls in love with an American man and wants to get married. Of course her family needs her to have a Greek wedding. Therefore he even needs to be baptised to be able to marry her. The first time I saw this movie, I had to laugh so hard. I really recommend you watching it.
In the past year, I have spend 5 months in Greece. Not only because I love the country, but also due to the fact that my boyfriend Dimitrios is Greek. This gives me the change to experience Greece from a local perspective. I can tell you: the movie might be little bit exaggerated, but most of it is actually true. From the part that her father can convert every word back to the Greek language, up to the endless discussions they have. And then always the thing with the food... In the movie her family owns a restaurant and you see them always making sure everybody eats.
Trying to say no to food is impossible
In real life: either be ready for a constant discussion and be consistent in saying no, either just go running everyday to burn the extra calories. Whenever you walk inside the house of a Greek family, food will be offered to you. All great and tasty food. And if you don't want, you better repeat it at least 10 times, otherwise you will get anyway. I just make sure I haven't eaten before we enter Dimitris house. That makes it a lot easier. Also leaving without any tupperware filled with food, is a big challenge..
Last week we had a barbecue with Dimitris family. My parents are now in Greece on vacation and they joined as well. There was food for I guess 15 people, although we were only with 8... It was one big happening. Even though parents had eaten so much, they did not manage to say 'no thank you' to the watermelon that was served for desert. And of course we left with a tupper of food.
It isn't only your 'own family' that will feed you
One of the most lovely things is that it is not only their own family that they try to feed. This month we stayed in a small apartment complex in Zagori. The owner of the place is a great lady who lives in Ioannina. Her mother is the one that takes care of the vegetable garden at the complex and she is a real Greek mother. The first time we met, we got homemade jam and some other lovely sweets. The second time she came with a cheese pie and the third time with pumpkin pie. At the day we leave, she makes Dimitris promise we pass by her house to pick up vegetable pie... Trust me: there was NO way saying 'don't bother'. When driving in Ioannina, her daughter even called us again to ensure the pie was ready at her mum's place and that we should not forget to pick it up...
This is so characteristic for the Greeks. They are so friendly, kind and helpful. I absolutely love it. And in the end: I have some great homemade pie for on the road :D.