According to the Greek Orthodox Church, every day of the year has been dedicated to the memory of a Saint.
This day carries the name of the Saint and is called a “nameday.”
If someone is named after a Saint, then there is a big celebration on his/her name day. In Greece, namedays are usually more important than birthdays. Gifts are given, festive meals and desserts are prepared, and special preparations are made for an open house.
The Greek God(zilla)’s nameday is in August. Instead of the big party he was hopefully not expecting, Zachy and I took him out for an ice-cream and presented him with a book and an itunes voucher.
Zachy had a little party at Yiayia’s house for his nameday. Leo’s coincided with Greek Easter Sunday so he tucked into a big chunk of lamb for his. BB shares her name day with the Greek God(zilla) and Yiayia’s is on New Year’s Day.
We do try to get together for namedays if we
remember can. If nothing else, it is a good excuse to see each other and catch up over a glass of wine. Sometimes several glasses of wine…
However, the Greek God(zilla)’s youngest sister has never had a nameday celebration of her own.
For all her 21-years* on this earth, she has not received a cake, a card or even a simple happy nameday phone call.
Having always thought her given name of Eva did not have its own specific nameday, she has missed out on this extra special birthday.
While her siblings have celebrated, she has sat quietly back and wished for a day to call her own.
So imagine my surprise, while casually browsing an online nameday calendar, I saw this:
I rubbed my tired, disbelieving eyes and clicked on the next search result…
It cannot be so, I told myself.
Wikipedia will confirm for sure…
OH. MY. GOODNESS.
Somebody has made a bit of a boo-boo…