If you cancelled your plans to visit Greece during the Euro crisis, I think you made a mistake, cause it’s awesome here and you are missing out.
I arrived in Athens this morning expecting to walk into some sort of economic zombie apocalypse land. Yes, the banks are closed and people are pissed, but nobody knifed me for my cash. Mostly people just waited in long lines at ATM’s and occasionally yelled at bank managers standing outside the shuttered buildings.
Overall, everyone here seems to be calm. Life is moving along.
The metro is free during the Euro crisis, which is going to save me lots of money over the next week.
I spent most of my day hanging out near Syntagma Square, where I found tons of these delightful posters. Notice the background of the posters, nothing is on fire, no cars are being flipped, no tourists being mugged or killed. It’s all cool here.
OXI, pronounced “ochi” or “oshi” is the rallying cry for those that want Greece to leave the Eurozone. From what I can tell it not only means “no” but is also a nod to OXI day and the quote “this means war”, which is a bit of overkill, but whatever, Greece is pissed. Syntagma Square was deserted all day, but tonight it turned into a sea of people, complete with a live band.
It was difficult to capture just how many people were at the rally because it spanned many levels and several side streets. Allegedly there was a teargas incident early in the evening but by the time I showed up the energy was all positive. All ages were represented and everyone was singing nationalistic songs. The food vendors were out in full effect, it was a real party.
I will be here for the referendum on the 5th when Greece decides to stay in the Eurozone or go their own way. It will be interesting to see how the energy in Athens feels the night of the 5th.