Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Is it just me ????

Sorry I haven't written in a while, but problems arise, and have to be dealt with.

Something I heard a few days ago has been at the back of my mind, and I feel like sharing it with you. Living in a tourist region can be very hectic, especially during the summer season. People come and go, friends and relatives visit, although I rarely have time to see them. Here in Greece this week is probably the busiest week in all of Greece's tourist resorts, and everywhere seems to be fully booked. Now what I heard may not seem unusual, but I will tell you about it anyway.

Due to the time of year, and the demand for rooms, some people have thought it wise to move out of their homes, renting them to passers-by, who have been searching high and low for places to stay. It seems that anywhere you go, you can find people willing to give up their own homes in order for the weary travellers to have a place to stay. Seems fine. A good deed. Some may even be astounded that there are actually people who care enough to do this. That is what I thought, until I found out the prices they were charging!!!

You see I am a positive person. I always try to look on the bright side, but this really did take my breath away. Newly married couples with month old babies are moving out and tourists are moving in.

A sign of the times you may say. The European Monetary System seems to have affected our lives in ways that we would never have imagined a decade ago. The situation is drastic and as every country has its fair share of problems, although the weaker links, including countries like Greece are now going through a very difficult stage in the globalisation process. With no industrial foundations, no incentives, no real investments outside the areas of the two main cities, Athens and Salonika, foreseeable improvements in quality of life are not on the horizon. So what do we do? What future do our children have?

Greece seems to be turning into a country with two main classes, which I have classified in my own way- the "haves" and the "have nots". Those who have money and those who don't. Those who have connections and those who don't. Those who have education and those who don't. Those who bribe and those who don't. Those who pull strings and those who don't. The list is endless, but the worrying factor is that there is no middle ground. Banks, loan sharks, money launderers prosper, while people run from job to job, trying to make ends meet and live a comfortable life.

The bottom line is that the Euro did much more than unite European countries with one currency. It changed everything, even personalities. The Greek State, as most states, did not prepare their people for drastic consequences - consequences which are now coming to light, as bank lending reaches its peak, and poverty begins to rear its ugly head. I am no expert, but all I see are full pockets , that are being lined with even more, and empty pockets, that now have holes in them.

Is it just me letting myself become pessimistic or are there others out there who feel let down?This is our Europe. This is our Greece. This is our home. A home we are willing to sell to the highest bidder. What will be on the market next??