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On Strike, Weird Meat and Other Views in Athens

 Athens’ Banks closed their doors on December 15th, 2010. Angry protestors painted the town in destruction setting fire to heaps of garbage, smashing car windows, bus shelthers and telephone booths. Marble slabs and stone were shattered from bulidngs and monuments leaving the streets in rubble and ruin. The week would see media and transportation strikes leaving the city in mayhem.  It was mass exodus as locals waited on sidewalks with their packed suitcases and bags of belongings for allocated coach buses, operating only at night, to transport people out of Athens.

 Athens airport traffic controllers went on strike for 24 hours leaving hundreds of flights cancelled, including ours to Istanbul. Hundreds of angry workers (and tourists) took to the streets. Minutes after this picture was taken the angry crowd began throwing molotov cocktails at police who responded with tear gas.

 Transportation strikers take to the streets of Athens on December 14th. The strike would leave the streets in covered in a sea of yellow. Cabbies were having their hayday.

Police lined the streets in riot gear bearing sheilds, guns, battons and gas masks 

With the government capping salaries and cutting employee pay, Athens struggles desperately to make ends meet trying to make an extra buck where ever and when ever they can. Even when the city is busy striking, it still has to eat. Street vendors had their stands ready to go for both protestors and onlookers.

Turning down one of many alleyways in Athens we stumbled upon a massive meat market. Some highlights included the sheep heads and the Mr. Cotton tail rabbits (still wearing their furry tails). Turning around much to fast trying to get out of there as fast as possible, I ended up getting caught up in a curtain hanging chickens. We did see the famous sites too and they were a little less scary, but fare less exciting. What is amazing though is the view that up top the Acropolis. You don’t really get just how compact and over populated the city of Athens truely is until you get to look over the city with a birds eye view.

We were lucky again to have the weather on our side in the middle of December. Gearing down to t-shirts had us giddy. We didn’t get to see the beauties of Santorini’s black beaches or the wonders of Crete’s Samaria Gorge, but we did get to see some exciting social history at its finest.

The Limey

One comment on “On Strike, Weird Meat and Other Views in Athens

  1. vagablonding
    January 2, 2011

    Ick, sheep heads! What do you make from that… sheep head soup? Looks like you're having an awesome time.. keep up the posts and Happy 2011! xo

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This entry was posted on December 24, 2010 by in Athens, Greece.
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