Over the last few months I’ve tried to make sense of what happened, and continues to happen, to the economy here in Greece and there seem to be as many answers to this as there are publications discussing it: The politicians stole the money; Goldmann Sachs gambled it; it all went in bribes; the civil servants have squirreled it away; it went in patronage and nepotism. What I do know is that it’s gone.
There are roughly 12,000,000 Greek people living in this large, beautiful country and about 6,000,000 of them live in and around Athens. Yesterday there were perhaps 200,000 people protesting and perhaps 150 people rioting in a very small area of the city. Up here in Kifissia you would have no idea that the streets downtown were burning. Armani was open and the electric railway was running a skeleton service. The only people taking to the streets were those walking to the market or going for coffee. The first I knew of the horror unfolding was when I got a text from a friend asking me where I was because she thought I may have taken guests into the city.
Yesterday three people died, and many people were injured, in a pointless attack on a bank in the city. On a human level this affects me but in how I live my life on a day-to-day basis I am still far more worried about being injured when driving my car.