Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Men: Lock up your wives and girlfriends, Greek military men are marching loose.

This is the honour guard outside the Greek parliament.  The man in the blue beret charmed the shoes off Shannon and I.  But in his charming, did reveal some interesting details about both the highly stylised march and ornamental uniform of the guard.  The high-stepping kick and swing of the march represents a proud war horse - indeed the guard's shoes are heeled with metal similar to horse shoes. The black tassel by the face and the pleats in the skirt represent the tears of the Greek people and, respectively, 400 years of Turkish rule.  The pompoms on the toe once concealed a blade.  The guards change every hour, but aside from the ceremonial march every half hour, stand impossibly still and DO NOT blink. 

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