Greece in crisis – with the referendum hardly two days behind us, I have to admit I needed to take a step back and digest a few things. Hence the beach photo, one long day on the beach, straight after casting my vote. Reality here is pressing and whilst this very loud No is still reverberating, things are cooking and not in my kitchen.
I was stuck in front of the TV Sunday evening, and then again the same on Monday morning and still going today, in the background. There was one very loud No that came out of Greece. No to austerity, and still this was just the beginning to what I would like to think a much better tomorrow. Monday morning I woke up to the Finance Minister, Y. Varoufakis resignation. A little bit surprised to be honest, why would he leave now? Things were on course towards better negotiations. But I think in his letter explains it all:
”Soon after the announcement of the referendum results, I was made aware of a certain preference by some Eurogroup participants, and assorted ‘partners’, for my… ‘absence’ from its meetings; an idea that the Prime Minister judged to be potentially helpful to him in reaching an agreement. For this reason I am leaving the Ministry of Finance today.”
So after the big No, all political parties came together and agreement has been reached internally, they stand together. Government is currently in Brussels for more negotiations, for a new deal. It better be a good one, because the previous one certainly would not do.
It’s not easy distancing yourself to reassess the situation. I dread to think of all the things that are going behind the scenes and in front of the cameras, and mainly, how many people will be affected by these decisions. What I would like to stay on though, is how amasing it is to see people standing out for each other.
Solidarity of people, near and far was and still is pretty incredible. Perhaps you remember the Greek Bailout Fund I posted about last week – it raised €1,930,366EUR by 108,652 people in 8 days. Nowhere close to the goal, but still incredible to see all these people reaching out to Greece. More stats are from indiegogo are here. Also, heading towards Sunday it was not just Greek people on the roads rallying but also people in Germany, UK, Italy, Lisbon and Turkey to name a few.
And solidarity is the key to what has kept Greece going for so long. The families will stand out for each other to help. Kids are back with the parents and grandparents to keep a household running, even if merged to one where there should have been two. A borrowed car and a lift from a friend when your car has broken down and cannot be replaced. A meal and some fruit from the neighbour, because it’s better to share. A kind word from a stranger in the shop, that instead of hard-selling his handmade products, tells you, not to rush, it’s difficult for everyone, come back when you are ready. There are small every day acts of kindness that keep Greece going. Perhaps for the best, as life is simple and is counted in every day acts of kindness.
In case you are a bit overwhelmed with the torrent of news on the media, please head to Paul Mason blog & vlog. It is one of the most accurate accounts.
Also, on opinions, check out Slavoj Žižek’s article: This is a chance for Europe to awaken
Meanwhile, I have something very simple and refreshing, the all famous Greek salad. Over here we call it xoriatiki, village salad to remind us of the humble and simple ingredients you could grab from your vegetable patch. And the living is easy…
- 5 tomatoes
- 1 cucumber
- 1 small onion
- 10 black olives
- 100 gr feta cheese
- olive oil and vinegar
- pinch of Greek oregano
- salt and pepper
What to do:
Cut your tomatoes in wedges and cucumber in slices.
Place in a bowl, along with feta cheese and olives.
Drizzle with olive oil and vinegar and add some oregano
Enjoy on a sunny day!
with love from Athensby