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Greeks Coping with the Crisis … or not!

Weekends have been quite ‘teaching’ for me recently as I go more around, chat with neighbors and meet friends and learn more about the concerns of the Greek society. I only need to go to neighborhood super-market to return home depressed. To tell you the truth, every Monday there is a bitter taste when I sit in front of the pc and try to summarize people’s desperation.

Greek citizens are getting are more and more depressed and are deeply concerned amid discussions on Haircuts, banks recapitalization and fears the sixth tranche will not arrive on time. Few average Greeks understand the effects of Greece’s lenders’ decisions but here is the reality they face each and every day.  They are middle class Greeks, many with university degree; civil servants, employees and self-employees, pensioners,  jobless. With children or not. They all have something in common: Count every euro they get in their hands, desperately trying to feed children, pay bills and taxes, survive.

Despina, 45,  was telling me,  she has difficulties to pay the fees for her children’s tutorials or even English lessons. Her son finishes secondary education next summer, the family plan was that he would go to the university. Despina and her husband are too shocked by their income sharp decrease to seek alternative for their son’s professional future.

Eleni, 64, saw her pension down by 350 euro per month. She pilles food in her kitchen, rice, pasta, tomato puree, cans and everything lasting that could help her survive. she also bought enough dry food and cans for her dog and four cats. Eleni is convinced that she won’t receive her pension for one or two months.  

Giorgos, 80, is also concerned about having to spend one-two months without his pension. He called his brother in Chicago, USA, to send him some financial aid. Giorgo’s children struggle with the economic survival and unemployment that allows only one person earning per family. “Exactly as Papandreou said. One earning person per family… My children consider migrating.”

Marina, 40,  complains about her husband’s bad mood. The car engineer at a private company and hasn’t been paid for four months. He gave up smoking to save the family money.

Tasos, 27, considers to migrate. The food technician could get some bad paid jobs as delivery boy. He saw his salary decreased together with the tips. The company he works for is about to close down.

Hairdressers Tina, 38, and Anna, 40, have more expenditures for rent, utilities and social contributions than revenues. The majority of their customers didn’t return after the summer vacation. Not even for hair dying. They’ll give it a chance till the end of the year. 

Nora, 48, opened a shop six months ago, when she lost her job at a big company. She sells cloths. She told me thins morning, she’d rather bury her head under a pillow.

I personally wish, I wouldn’t listen to the news and play computer games like a freak all day long…

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  1. The depression you see around here, u captured that one well!!.. I tried to explain it to a danish “journalist” one day I was called up, but all she cared about was if the danish tourist would suffer any inconvinience!!..
    I see it every day too and I pretty much got to the point where I HATE leaving the house..

    And I dont know if its just me, but ive noticed several times now, within the last 2 months, that the attitude some tourists have towards Greek shopowners ect, its imbarresing.. No hello, no goodbye, just an attitude like they think they are all pigs.. I could have exploded at some danish tourists the other day, when they were SO rude to a friend of mine who own a goldshop.. All he asked them, was if he could help.. The look he got back, it was just beyond. I felled SO ashamed for being Danish..
    To make my mood even better, it was football night. Me and some friends (a mix of greeks, danes and swedish) had agreed to go to a big sportsbar.. 23 tvs theyve got! We are (read WERE!) regular customers there.. We asked the owner, which tv he was gonna show the Greek match on. It was gonna be send the same time as the danish (which we knew he would show).. The answer??? “I wont be showing the Greek match, because I have no Greek customers”.. Right next to my Greek friend was sitting.. I got so pissed off, that I walked out, screaming at the owner he was an idiot.. Maybe its just the whole situation here, reading all these comments from foreingers living abroad and the view on Greeks, that made me go bananas. But its just like they have taken over everything.. And its ENOUGH… And im not even Greek..

    • keeptalkinggreece

      sad that we all experience the economic depression in that way. No sigh of solidarity.

      • None what so ever.. Its me me me me me me me and as long as IM doing fine, then to h… with everyone else.. Its the illness of the world today…

  2. Correction: I said to the owner something in the direction that this was Greece and he wasnt even gonna show the match.. Some other stuff to (which I dont recall) and said he was an idiot as I walked out… And I dont care if he is the only one showing Denmarks match tomorrow against Portugal.. im NOT going back.. No way!!..

  3. I stopped by my corner mini market on my way home from a depressing day to find out that one of our neighbours jumped off his 4th floor balcony and died. The government’s killing people and getting away with it. I don’t know what else to say, too sad