I have been thinking of moving to Crete for almost two years. I signed the pre-contract for my new apartment in Heraklion on September 28 last year and anticipated signing the final contract in October. However, the owner did not submit his paperwork until the end of November, and little work gets done in Greek offices over the holidays. Moreover, the sitting tenant was doing just that. She been asked to move in July, and with an expired lease, she lost the formal eviction case in October. The realtor and the owner felt certain she would move before the holidays. She did not.
I spent December and January in a kind of hibernation. I knew I would eventually get the apartment, but I also knew I could do little to make it happen more quickly. I sat on my couch, stared out to sea, and waited. Soon it was mid-January and nothing had changed. We were still waiting for a paper from the Municipality of Heraklion and the tenant had not budged.
It occurred to me that if the decision of the court on the eviction had been published, the owners’ lawyer might be guilt-tripped to proceed with the formal eviction, given that his client had delayed the contract. After a week, my lawyer finally caught up with the other lawyer only to learn that the decision of the court had still not been published. (This is where a Greek saying comes in handy: “Stin Ellada zoume,” we say, “We live in Greece”—what else did you expect?)
Still, my actions were not in vain. The realtor spoke to the owner who located his friend in the Municipality offices and we finally got the paper. The contract of sale would be ready soon. But the tenant still had not moved. “Don’t worry, she will,” my lawyer insisted, “unless she is crazy.” I was not so sure. She had proved to be very stubborn. “If she moves before she gets the formal eviction notice,” I responded, “I will give you 10 euros.” I called the realtor to remind him to inform the tenant that the contract would soon be signed and the formal eviction would follow.
You could have blown me over with a feather when the realtor told me a few days later that the tenant would be out of the apartment by the end of January. As today is the last day of January, the apartment will be free tomorrow. The contract will be ready within a week. I will fly to Heraklion, sign the contract, receive the keys, and meet with my architect to begin the renovations I so carefully planned many long months ago.
When I first learned that all of this was happening, I did not get excited. I had been disappointed so long, it took a few days for the good news to sink in. From there, things have moved quickly. After being frustrated for months in my search to find a moving company on the island of Lesbos that packs and insures against damage, I found one. That was the last link in the chain.
I have done another Tarot reading. My first card is the Empress: “This is a time for nurturing, material and domestic comfort, a feeling of abundance, harmony, joy and love.” The outcome is the Sun: “The Sun is shining on you – it’s your time for success, joy and happiness. You will feel confident and full of vitality.” May it be so.
Soon I will be celebrating the signing of the contract with my lawyer and handing over a lucky 10 euro bill. Not long after that, I will be unpacking my boxes and beginning a new phase in my life in Heraklion, Crete.
I hope to make friends who share my interests in Goddess spirituality and my commitments to feminism, the environment, and progressive politics. I look forward to walking to the harbor, deepening my roots in the landscape of Crete, and writing about its ancient culture.
Carol P. Christ is an internationally known feminist and ecofeminist writer, activist, and educator who will soon be moving to Heraklion, Crete. Carol’s recent book written with Judith Plaskow, Goddess and God in the World: Conversations in Embodied Theology, is on Amazon. A Serpentine Path: Mysteries of the Goddess is on sale for $9.99 on Amazon. Carol has been leading Goddess Pilgrimage to Crete for over twenty years: join her in Crete. Carol’s photo by Michael Honneger.
Listen to Carol’s a-mazing interview with Mary Hynes on CBC’s Tapestry recorded in conjunction with her keynote address to the Parliament of World’s Religions.