We left Amsterdam at about 9pm, flying to Zurich. There we met up with Katerina (also travelling Amsterdam-to-Thessaloniki) to swap travel complaints. While Olga was wandering the airport I got Katerina to teach me to say "I want to marry your daughter" -- not to use it on Olga's parents but to pull it out if her friends want to know what Greek I've learned. Then on the plane to Thessaloniki Olga found the notebook page where I'd written it down... the reaction was pretty amusing, even if the setup wasn't quite what I'd planned.
Olga's folks Elli and Iannis were there to meet us at the airport and make the one-hour drive back to Katerini. By this time it was 2am and we were dead on our feet. Not so Olga's mum: she dashed up the stairs ahead of us to pull from the oven the first of many extravagant meals: this time stuffed tomatoes and peppers, and baked eggplant slices. When we tottered off to bed she was still sitting chipper at the table, nibbling on feta.
The next morning I got my first taste of Greek typography:
I never managed to get a photo (from a speeding car window) but the signs to Katerini on the highway almost look English: KATEPINH, they say. And to round out the linguistic discoveries of the first day, "υιοί" or "ΥΙΟΙ" (which means "sons" and is frequently visible on signs: Grigoriadis and sons, and so on) is pronounced "eee": three syllables, each the vowel of "three".