Usually I'm such a quiet neighbor!
Natalie was in Athens with her sister, Kleo. We found an air ticket for only 69.00 Euros from Chania to Athens!
Nik was hiking in the mountains with his friends to celebrate the Patron Saint of the shepherds, St. Paul. He would be attending a mass at a small church built in the mountains then going from table to table to eat with the shepherds . . . and drink wine, so I didn't expect him home for a while.
So Asproula, my canine companion, and I decided to have a quiet evening watching T.V.
The T.V. and the remote control to myself! Wow, I could feel the power running through my veins!
I found a wonderful documentary on the Vouli channel of a Greek artist who has worked all his life with ceramic and paints. (The Vouli channel is similar to the U.S.A. CSPAN. Vouli means Congress and the channel offers live proceedings of Congress plus lots of interesting films and documentaries from around the world).
Next I watched part of a documentary on traditional weddings in northern Greece when the celebration lasted seven days. The celebrants seemed to be having more fun than in modern stressed out weddings of a few hours.
And, really best of all, a French television series with George Correfaces, as "The Negotiator." (The bomb is about to go off, the bad guy is strapped in a chair next to the bomb, do they save him for his day in court or save themselves? They have ten seconds before the bomb goes off but does anyone know how to disarm the bomb?) The Negotiator played here in French with Greek subtitles. I highly recommend the series!"Alex Santana, négociateur" (2002) TF1. In Greek the title is Ο διαπραγματευτής.)
Τhen came the highlight of the evening - the FIFA Confederation Cup (Soccer) Final from South Africa! U.S.A. versus Brasil! Wow, what a match, soccer as it is meant to be played. The generation playing for the U.S.A. must have grown up playing soccer never baseball nor football. They were energetic and out to win! They led by 2 goals in the first half! What a shocking second half when Brasil scored 3 goals! (The U.S.A. goalkeeper was pretty angry at his team mates for letting Brasil get so close to the goal, he was angry and by the end, exhausted.)
I'm adding the play by play from the NY Times Sports blog below. Just a glance at the post and you'll understand how exciting soccer can be!
I've been a casual soccer fan this year so I was flabbergasted when I saw the U.S.A. had made the FIFA confederaton Cup Final. I was yelling and screaming at the television from practically the start of the match. I'm pretty sure my neighbors figured out almost immediately what was on the TV at my house so no cops were called to the door, thank goodness.
The Greek national team creates the same reaction from my neighborhood when their soccer games are televised. Hyper-excitement is considered normal and, I think, patriotic.
June 28, 2009, 2:25 pm
Match Tracking Confederations Cup Final: Brazil 3, U.S. 2 By Jack Bell Jerry Lampen/Reuters Clint Dempsey scored the first goal for the United States in the 10th minute.
The final of the FIFA Confederations Cup was a tale of two halves.
First half: U.S. 2, Brazil 0
Second half: Brazil 3, U.S. 0
Final: Brazil 3, U.S. 2
After squandering its first-half lead, the United States fell victim to a quick goal at the start of the second half, then a second by Luis Fabiano before the five-time World Cup champions won the match on a header by Lúcio off a corner from Kaka in the 74th minute.
There are no moral victories, nothing that can ease pain for the U.S. But after a dreadful start to the tournament, an appearance in the final and a credible showing against Brazil augurs only good things for the U.S. in the future.
92nd minute Brazil holding on expertly to the ball as time runs out in the 3 minutes of added time.
90th minute Landon Donovan's long pass into the area fails to find Clint Dempsey. Time running out on the U.S.
88th minute U.S. corner kick, but first Conor Casey replaces Ricardo Clark. Landon Donovan's corner is powered over the crossbar by Oguchi Onyewu.
86th minute After packing it back and hoping for a quick counterattack, the U.S. now has to go for the equalizer without Jozy Altidore or Benny Feilhaber on the field.
85th minute GOAL Elano corner kick finds the head of Lúcio, who beats Clint Dempsey to the ball and heads it high and over Tim Howard. 3-2 Brazil
80th minute Luis Fabiano turns on Jay DeMerit, but his bid for a tournament leading sixth goal is turned away.
78th minute Possession all Brazil as it probes for the go-ahead goal.
75th minute U.S. substitutes: Sacha Kljestan for Benny Feilhaber; Jonathan Bornstein for Jozy Altidore.
75th minute GOAL Kaká carries down the left side toward end line, holding off Jonathan Spector. Cross to Elano for a shot is crashed off the crossbar. Luis Fabiano pounces for equalizer. 2-2
73rd minute Charlie Davies lugs the ball 20-25 yards on a scintillating run toward the Brazil goal. Pushed to middle, before ball tackled away by Luisao.
71st minute Careless giveaway pass by Carlos Bocanegra nearly results in the equalizer. Tim Howard quickly comes off his line to smother a shot by Luis Fabiano.
65th minute Charlie Davies leads a counterattack, but decides, smartly, to play the ball back for an interchange by Benny Feilhaber and Ricardo Clark. Ball falls to Landon Donovan for a good shot that forces a save by Julio Cesar.
60th minute Kaká header at the near post bounces and hits the underside of the crossbar before it's grabbed by Tim Howard. Brazil appeals for a goal and replay shows that the ball had completely crossed the line and was knocked off the crossbar by Howard, who was in the goal. If there was video replay or a smartchip in the ball, the match would have been tied.
58th minute Kaká corner finds Lúcio standing alone off the far post. Strong header is parried away by Tim Howard.
57th minute Kaká leads Maicon into the right corner, his cross is gobbled up by Tim Howard.
55th minute Kaká trying to put his mark on the game, leading the Brazilian attack, but not getting the kind of overlapping support he wants.
52nd minute Brazil probing the defensive perimeter of the U.S., but without success. Jonathan Spector using his size and skill to thwart Robinho.
48th minute Can the U.S. maintain its composure for the next 10 minutes as Brazil is likely to come forward seeking the equalizer?
46th minute GOAL Exactly what the U.S. did not want to happen. Luis Fabiano receives the ball in the penalty area with his back to the goal. Incredibly quick turn beats Jay DeMerit as Brazil pulls one back. 2-1 U.S.
45 minutes to a championship for the United States. Can it hold on?
Welcome to our match-tracking coverage of the final of the FIFA Confederations Cup between the United States and Brazil in Johannesburg.
The United States advanced to its first FIFA final after Wednesday's upset win over No. 1-ranked Spain, 2-0, on goals by Jozy Altidore and Clint Dempsey. Brazil made it to the title game by ousting the host nation, South Africa, 1-0, on a late free kick by Daniel Alves.
The only change in the starting lineup for the United States was made out of necessity. Benny Feilhaber, who was born in Brazil, replaces Michael Bradley, who took a straight red card in the 87th minute of the win over Spain.
The U.S. has only beaten Brazil (a five-time World Cup winner) once, in a match in the Concacaf Gold Cup in 1998. Brazil is the clear favorite to win the match, seeking its third Confederations Cup crown, but that's why they play the game.
Eight teams, 16 games, 2 weeks. Down to the final two: U.S. and Brazil.
Halftime What can you possibly say? Surprise? Stunner? Unexpected? Those and a few other words could not even suffice to describe the two-goal lead the U.S. takes into the lockerroom. The U.S. did not have an abundance of chances, but the ones it did have resulted in a surprising, amazing 2-0 lead.
43rd minute With nearly seven men back behind the ball, the U.S. is gobbling up everything Brazil has to offer near its goal. Particularly defenders Jay DeMerit and Oguchi Onyewu in the middle.
39th minute Brazil controlling possession, U.S. playing tight on defense and waiting for the counterattack, one that is led by Charlie Davies nearly leads to another good scoring chance.
35th minute Robinho leads Andre Santos into the area for a point blank shot parried by Tim Howard.
27th minute GOAL Incredibly, the U.S. breaks on the counter, Ricardo Clark to Landon Donovan in middle of the field. Out wide to Charlie Davies, who finds Donovan with a return in middle of the field. Left-footed shot beats Julio Cesar. 2-0 U.S.
27th minute Maicon charges forward and takes a right-footed shot that nearly squeezes inside near post, before save by Tim Howard.
25th minute Felipe Melo find the ball at his feet about 23 yard out for a hard shot, which Tim Howard pounces on to save. Brazil ruled offside on the play while Melo takes a yellow card for a hard challenge on Onyewu.
22nd minute Robinho strips Jonathan Spector on the left flank, cross is headed cleared by Oguchi Onyewu, the mountain in the middle for the U.S.
19th minute Carlos Bocanegra grabs Kaka around the waist, delaying Brazil attack but also taking a yellow card from the Swedish referee, Martin Hansson.
15th minute U.S. buzzing on consecutive corners ... Oguchi Onyewu and Clint Dempsey come close.
13th minute Kaka finds Robinho on the left flank. Shot on the ground headed for far post pushed wide by Tim Howard for a Brazil corner. Charlie Davies break from the cleared corner nearly led to a scoring chance.
10th minute GOAL From a free kick, ball goes to Jonathan Spector on right, cross finds Clint Dempsey about 15 yards from the goal. Tips the ball on a side volley and rolls it past Julio Cesar. 1-0 U.S.
7th minute Robinho corner to near post, Kaká steps in front of Jozy Altidore for header that is wide to near post.
6th minute Jonathan Spector of the U.S. is going to have his hands full on the flank marking Robinho.
3rd minute Languid start for both teams after a needlessly long pregame ceremony.