This is where they sell the fish. But there are no fish.
This is where they sell the local produce. But there is no local produce.
This is where they sell the jewelry. But there are no customers.
Then again, it’s afternoon in the old port of Mykonos and the farmers and fishermen have long since packed up and gone home.
As for the jewelers, we shall see.
Greek Easter Week ended on Sunday. Usually it offers a glimpse of peak season madness that will not return until June. This year things were slow. Hotels that would normally have opened for Easter did not, and many that did were not busy. In part because Easter tourists are mainly Greeks, and Greeks are conserving their money. Others who planned on coming decided to cancel their plans when ferryboat union workers called a strike that kept the boats in port until just after midnight Thursday.
Let’s see, what other good news is there to report. Oh, yes, national elections are May 6th. Mercifully, Greeks are spared the four-year electioneering cycle US voters endure. Greek campaigning only runs about a month. That’s probably a good thing considering the deep resentment Greeks are showing for their elected officials.
Politicians are trying to distance themselves from decisions virtually everyone agreed had to be made. Each of the two main parties spawned two others, and normally peripheral ones are sensing their best chance in decades to advance their influence.
Old wine in new bottles is what the kinder cynics are saying. Many say the party most likely to see significant gains is the “white party.” Greeks must vote, so in protest they will submit a blank—white—ballot.
Sadder still, is the number of thoughtful observers who believe this election could easily make things worse, much worse. That scenario is based upon what seems the likely outcome: no single party will have a majority, thereby requiring competing parties to work together in a coalition government. If past experience is any guide, they say, coalition members are likely to be too busy acquiring and protecting their own fiefdoms to focus on what must be done for their country. There will be no national direction and power vacuums will open to opportunists.
When it comes to Greeks’ current attitude toward their elected officials I think it’s safe to say pessimism rules. They have no confidence in those in power, yet see no one on the horizon to replace them.
Sound like the US?
Oh well, it’s only April, and we know what they say, April showers bring May flowers, things are always darkest before the dawn, a chicken in every pot come May 7th….
Frankly, I think the country would be a whole lot better off if its politicians behaved more like its farmers and fishermen. They face reality everyday and make it work for them. Otherwise, they starve.