My never ending birthday throughout the Covid19 pandemic by Nimrod Dagan
Efharisto, toda, köszönöm, thank you for these incredible days! #Nimi’s29B-day!
I have so many people I want to thank, but first I want to thank my mom, who brought me to this world, gave me life, taught me how to walk & to smile, without her I had nothing to celebrate, cos without her it all could not happen.
Love your mothers, even if they are not always perfect, even if they don’t always understand you, or not always listening to you, even if they feel that you are not always there by their side, even if they are sometimes not that easy.
Remember each of us got only one. I love you ima Bella, thank you for bringing me to this world ❤️
So I turned 29, and I had my best birthday ever. I know it feels like I’ve been celebrating my day for 5 days, and the truth is that I did. I believe that a birthday is our own private holiday & we all should celebrate as much as we want, just as nobody has the right to tell us when to take off our Christmas tree, no one should be blame by how many bday parties he had, and mostly not about how many breakfast, brunch, lunches, dinners & midnight snacks or chocolate cakes in bed – he is having.
I’m sure I’m not the only one who happened to celebrate during the covid-19 pandemic, and I have to admit, that corona or not, I managed to enjoy myself & my special days, thanks to the people I love & without breaking any rules.
So how did I celebrate my birthday? First of all I happened to be one of the luckiest man in the world, having the most supportive, adventurer & creative husband, who did everything not just for taking out the best, but to actually turn this birthday to one of the best I ever had.
Kristof knows me so well, understanding exactly what I love & want, especially for my birthday. We eat a lot and I’ll not gonna get in to too many details cos you can read everything on the last post on our vegan blog CookOuting by Kristóf & Nimi – Vegan Foodie Tips ‘n’ Trips Around the World. We visited a local tiny farm, with a donkey & four adorable goats, we went to wine & olive oil makery, we drove around Methana Island and we discover so many places we never seen before. We had an amazing time climbing up & down Methana’s famous Pigeon Cave, a hiking trip under the volcano mountain, surrounded by so much nature. Then we ended up at the most beautiful beach we both even seen in our life, we sat down on the warm sand, with no people or clothes for half a day.
Kristóf surprised me with about 60 recorded birthday wishes from friends of us from all over the world, they all changed their voices and I had to guess who is who. It was so much fun, and so emotional to have all those people having a part of my day.
The greatest present was yet to come: he got me a yearly, unlimited subscription to the best online school ever, Masterclass.com, where I can take acting, singing, dancing, photography, painting, writing, and many more classes by teachers like Natalie Portman, Martin Scorsese, Christina Aguilera, Anna Wintour, or RuPaul.
We also had a wonderful afternoon cooking at Wendy’s & Ian’s our neighbours place, then later on a sunset dinner party with all our friends here in Agios Giorgios, Francois & Patricia, Mariel & Philip. And not to feel like I’m too far from my family, we gathered for a touching & beautiful Zoom gathering with my family, my beloved parents Irit & Ezra, with Omri my brother & my favourite sister in law Anna.
We slept a lot, we drank a lot, we spent lots of time with our 4 cats, we took many bath at our terrace bathtub, we told each other so many beautiful things, we blessed each other of being who we are for each other and for ourselves, and for being together. I’m 29, I know I’m still very young, I know I have a lot to go through, to find out, to learn, to discover, to change, and I’m grateful for it, just as I’m grateful for everything I did and achieved in my life till now. I’m thanks to all who celebrated with me & for me, to everyone who sent me a message, commented to me, and sent me their love.
Be happy all, good to yourself and to others, Nimi.
All the food we ate, and the fun we had throughout my never ending birthday festival
Hey everyone, it’s Nimi here! I’m just off my birthday celebrations, after long weekend full of exciting adventures. I’m sure I’m not the only one who happened to celebrate his birthday during the covid-19 pandemic, and I have to admit, that corona or not, I managed to enjoy myself & my special days, thanks to the people I love, and without breaking any rules. I wanted to share with you guys what I ate in the past few days, cos as birthday should be, it was mostly about food…
First destination was Methana, 2 days before my actual birthday started. Kristof told me to get in the car without asking questions, and drove me to our favorite bakery in town, run by a wonderful family, Pedro and his dad, Niko. There I’ve got a full tray, eight piece of my absolutely favorite thing in Greece – the spanakopita, filo pastry sheets with steamed spinach & garlic, onion, olive oil, salt & pepper, baked in steaming-flaming oven.
From Methana town we drove to the post office in the closest town Galatas, to pick up box full of 100% vegan wines, that came all the way from the wonderful Kristinus Borbirtok in lake Balaton – Hungary, especially for my birthday. Thank you Florian Zaruba, our friend, and all-year-around wine Santa!
For dinner Kristóf surprised me and made a fabulous supper, down our house at my parents apartment, we sat on the balcony surrounded by the beautiful olives trees & our cats, we eat gluten free gnocchi made by the amazing Eden Premium, with vegan cheese sauce with green peas & mustard leaves. The recipe was based on our charity project, Karantén Kantin Szakácskönyv, supporting doctors and nurses in the front line of the hospitals, and you’ll soon see a special documentary of Kristóf cooking and surprising me, on our YouTube channel Kristóf’s Kitchen – Kristóf Konyhája.
Morning before my birthday, woke up for coffee in bed with the spinach pie from Methana & tahini (not our cat named Tahini, although she was also around), an hour later we found ourselves Kristóf & me cooking online for the @MaradjOtthonFesztivál – just as we do every Friday since the social distancing started. We made Indian yellow curry with cauliflower, sweet potatoes & chickpeas, inspired by Konstantinu’s recipe – search back for this Greek foodie god’s delish dish we shared here earlier.
An hour later we found ourselves at our neighbour’s, Wendy’s kitchen, drinking gin & tonic, and cooking a huge feast for the neighbors of Agios Giorgios getting together for my birthday. We made Greek gigantes, fava & fried artichokes, Wendy made her famous vegetable rice, french fries & chili bean, Patricia made a beautiful salad, Francois prepared roasted peppers, and Philip & Mariel brought an amazing Greek rice pudding, rizogalo with homemade strawberry mash.
We had an awesome day, with playing music, emotional talks, and being close to each other, finally. Then for the end Wendy’s chocolate cake arrived just for making our smiles even bigger – and by this time I already had two birthday cakes, since Kristóf prepared a banana bread for me earlier, with
MaBAKER’s sensational chocolate toffee.
On Saturday morning, on my actual birthday, Kristóf woke me up with breakfast: chickpeas omelet with writing of 29 made of avocado & tomatoes on top, with toast bread, vegan cheeses & orange juice with ouzo (cos on your birthday you can start your day with a drink).
After lovely morning chat through Zoom with my family, we took off to a visit at local winery & olive oil farm, where I could pet a beautiful donkey, and see a lovely family of goats, then we drove for an amazing trip around the island & empty beaches – we’ll tell you more about this part on Life by Nimi, and Proud Hippie Boy blogs.
As we arrived home, a taxi parked in front of the house with food delivery from Vaso – one of the best cooks of Methana town, who prepared a great meal for us by Kristóf’s surprise order, with the help of our bulder, Yanis: we had cooked zucchini, stuffed pepper, rice with spinach, cooked cabbage, eggplant in tomato sauce & black lentils soup. We went to sleep after day full of excitement & food, happy & loving each other. It was a perfect birthday.
And it didn’t end there! The morning after we packed a picnic box, we went down to a beach close by called The Coast of Love, to have breakfast & relax, we drove around the peninsula, and we were looking for more adventurous places we didn’t see till now. In the evening we came back home, Kristóf who told me already that the birthday is not ending, stopped to pick up his last surprise & our last last last meal from our beloved tavern in the village Το Αγιωργίτικον, cooked by Diamadis and Soula.
We ended my birthday on our terrace, watching the sunset, drinking wine, eating the very best collaboration of our favorite Greek food, xorta, fava, garlic sauce, black eyed peas, cabbage & Greek salad, fried potatoes, zucchini & eggplant, and stuffed pepper. Needless to say, we have some amazing leftovers, so the bday fun is STILL not over – tonight we are having a few friends for a buffet dinner and drink on the balcony, not to waste any food, and just to see each other again.
I’m grateful for everything and everybody, especially for those who happened to get inspired about how to cook & eat plant based food because of the two of us being around. I’m glad I arrived to a place where the local food is so good, where I have the best neighbors I could ask for, and the most loving & supporting husband. Happy birthday to me, I wish all the animals could be free just as I am.