Austerity - us and them

We are very lucky in the SOuth of the UK here. There is a fair bit of employment. My husband lost his business in 2009 but picked up two part time jobs. Later he lost one of those but subsequently he has built up his hours with the second job.

My kids both left school since the recession commenced. My eldest son works part time and his partner works 3 jobs but they get by. My youngest son took several years to get into his chosen profession, each year going back to college for extra qualification to help him get the edge to get in. We were lucky that we could afford to pay and it finally paid off. He is half way through his course now and its all sponsored so no uni debt at the end.

My job remained in place, we had two years of decrease (extra NI, extra pension contributions) and two years with no increase but at the end I still had a job.

We know pay less for our utilities then we did before the crash, because of reduce usage. our food bill is half what it was back in the day.

Just before the crash, 2007, we bought land in Greece and started to build out house.

And then we met the neighbours.  They are amazing. They live on next to nothing and they are friendly and generous.

Last year our next door neighbour had some problems with the house and with her water supply on her olives, and Fahed fixed both.  We received a gift of home butchered goat leg (it was good in stew, no kidding) and a huge goats cheese. My next door neighbour is almost self sufficient, she buys petrol for her daughter motorbike, that they both get around on, and very little else.

Fahed did some work for another neighbour. Our reward was a big bag of veggies from her garden, a litre of her olive oil and a fantastic lunch, with everything packed up to take home afterwards, and a huge bunch of wild tea gathered from the hillsides.

Lastly we spent a lot of time with another neighbour and these guys definitely know how to be self sufficient.  All the veggies and fruit is home grown, the meat is homegrown (bunny!), as are the eggs. Home made wine and home made raki is served at meals.  As far as I can see only the coffee was purchased and the petrol.  When we left to come back to England they gave us two sorts of home preserved olives. home made raki, home produced olive oil, more homegrown veggies.

The people of Greece are really hurting, they have nothing . But when a boat came ashore with 200 Syria refugees in Irepetra they collected a truck full of food, blankets and clothes together for these people.

Compared with them we are a bunch of total amateurs!


  1. That is amazing. We could learn so much from them. I am growing a few snow peas and I think I'm living off the land. :)

  2. And me, with my pot of mint. Must try harder!


Post a Comment

Popular Posts