New Beginning

Xamou directed by Clio Fanouraki (Greece) 2017 reveals some of the hidden charms of Crete.


As manager of a luxury hotel, Jonny is accustomed to a world of privilege. His ex wife and three children rely on him for financial support.

His sudden termination, after the sale of the hotel chain and a reshuffle of executive positions, leaves him emotionally adrift. He still dresses daily in suit and tie, but aside from efforts to find new employment, his waking hours are consumed by online gambling.

However, his life slowly changes from the moment his girlfriend coaxes him outside into the sunlight and his subsequent interaction with local people on the island.

Only two more days remain of the 15th San Francisco Greek Film Festival. While closing night is already sold out, tickets are still available for Friday 19 October 2018.

More information at

copyright © 2018 by N. A. Diaman, all rights reserved

Greek Spell

The former mayor of a small Israeli town goes to Greece for a sister cities ceremony in Magic Men directed by Guy Nattiv and Erez Tadmor (Israel) 2013.


He visits his childhood home in Thessaloniki and searches for the man who saved his life during World War !!.

However, the more difficult challenge during his travels in Northern Greece is resolving the contentious relationship between him and his son.

This film screens a final time Monday night 4 August 2014 at the California Theatre in Berkeley during the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival 34.

For more information and tickets contact SFJFF.

copyright © 2014 by N. A. Diaman, all rights reserved

US Greek Festivals

May Day is celebrated in Greece in two ways. It’s a traditional celebration of spring with picnics and family outings. Also it’s a commemorated with militant labor marches.

During my last visit to Athens I experienced a bit of both. On my way to a large park in the north of the city I walked along streets closed to traffic including buses, passing crowds of people headed toward Syntagma, which faces the Parliament.

I spent the afternoon sharing food and drink with mainly young people in a shaded area. A majority of them were Greek, others were from Turkey, Bulgaria, Germany. Perhaps three-dozen of us socializing and enjoying the good weather. A temporary respite for those who still faced a jobless future after completing their education.

In the United States there are many Greek festivals sponsored by Orthodox Churches from late spring to early fall. Below are some I’ve found:

9 – 12 May 2012 • Annunciation • 32 East Ross Street, Wilkes-Barre, PA

11 – 12 May 2012 • Annunciation • 573 N. Highland Street, Memphis, TN

17 – 20 May 2012 • St. Sophia • 440 Whitehall Road, Albany, NY

17 – 20 May 2012 • St. George • 1200 Klockner Road, Trenton, NJ

18 – 20 May 2012 • Nativity of the Theotokos • 1236 Spotswood Furnace Road, Fredericksburg, VA

18 – 20 May 2012 • Annunciation • 1100 Napa Valley Road, Little Rock, AR

18 – 20 May 2012 • Sts. Constantine & Helen • 265 W. Third Street, Mansfield, OH

18 – 20 May 2012 • Ascension Cathedral • 4700 Lincoln Avenue, Oakland, CA

18 – 20 May 2012 • Prophet Elias • 223 Church Street, Santa Cruz, CA

25 – 27 May 2012 • Church of the Nativity • 1110 Highland Drive, Novato, CA

31 May – 3 June 2012 • Sts. Constantine & Helen • 60 Traverse Road, Newport News, VA

31 May – 3 June 2012 • Holy Trinity • 250 Gallows Hill Road, Westfield, NJ

1 – 3 June 2012 • St. Nicholas • 3109 Scio Church Road, Ann Arbor, MI

1 – 3 June 2012 • St. Nicholas • 1260 Davis Street, San Jose, CA

2 – 3 June 2012 • St. Andrews • Mission Plaza, Downtown, San Louis Obispo, CA

Dance! Eat! Enjoy!

copyright © 2012 by N. A. Diaman, all rights reserved


For many people the Mediterranean lies at the center of imagination. In previous centuries it was a port of embarkation for adventurers seeking treasure abroad. My own ancestors were among those who abandoned poverty and turmoil in their homeland hoping to make a better life for themselves and their children in a foreign land.

Today it offers bright, warm days for the travelers of Northern Europe. And economic opportunity for refugees from Africa, the Balkans or the Middle East. It remains a vibrant crossroad for numerous cultures and peoples. Constantly transformed.

Mediterranean Focus will primarily cover art, books, cinema, food, and music not only within or from the region but will also trace the area’s influence in other parts of the world.

I am most familiar with Greece, Italy, France and Turkey but will make a conscious effort to broaden the scope of reporting. Also I welcome comments, suggestions and other input from readers.

copyright © 2012 by N. A. Diaman, all rights reserved