The Greek's parents are from a little village in Greece called Axladokambos. Yeah, try pronouncing that. The village sits on the side, yes I really mean side, of a mountain above the Mediterranean sea. Their families have lived there for many generations.
His dad came to America in his twenties and worked until he had enough money so that he could get married. He was around 36 years old by then. He told me once that he went home and married the best girl in all of Axladokambos. She was 23 years old. They honeymooned on the isle of Rhodes.
10 months later The Greek was born in a little hospital in Kentucky. They lived and worked with the Greek's dad's brother (who was a Greek Orthodox priest and restaurant/motel owner). About two years later they moved to Hollywood, California.
The Greek learned English from cartoons and when it came time for kindergarten he experienced language immersion. He still says funny things like "close the light" instead of "turn off the light". And he pronounces pajamas with a British accent (don't even ask).
|The Greek in Kindergarten|
The Greek lived in many different cities in the Los Angeles and San Diego area as his father went from restaurant to restaurant. He learned how to make friends quickly, which is still evident in his friendly manner today.
When they moved to Bonita his life changed forever one morning at the bus stop. A boy was waiting for the bus that usually wasn't there on the other mornings. The Greek asked him why. The boy said he usually went earlier to a bible study class. The Greek was in shock as to why someone would want to go to a religion class at 6:30 am. We Mormons call that Seminary. The Greek and the boy became friends. The Greek became interested in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and started going to seminary with the boy. A few years later he got baptized.
|The Greek (left) and the Boy (right)|
|This an elephant beetle. One of these crawled up The Greek's leg once in Brazil.|
But, he loved the people he served in Brazil. And the two years he spent there changed his life again.
|The Greek on his mission in Brazil|