Yes its that time of year again, sale time! And sales here in Athens are quite good, ok it may not be Milan sales, but things are so overpriced here anyway that sales are a good time to shop and buy things at a decent price. Yes you heard me right, things are very overpriced here in Athens, making it one of the most expensive places to live in the world.
In an effort to save money, many people travel to nearby Bulgaria or Turkey to do their shopping. There they can buy Greek olive oil a third cheaper than they can here, and thats not taking into account the exchange rate! In an effort to cut back on excessive price gauging the Ministry of Development i believe has set the price of certain goods.
Water is a public right here in Greece, when sitting down at cafe waiters will automatically bring you water. Tap water here in Athens is rated as amongst the cleanest in the world, but if you have to buy a water at a periptero - Do not pay more than 50 cents, if they charge more - they are ripping you off. And bottles sell even cheaper at supermarkets.
As a result many do not stock half a litre bottles and stock the 750ml bottles whose price is not capped and you can pay anything up to 2 euros!
Another scam is the humble ham and cheese toast. Don't ask me why this is so popular here but the price for this has been set at 1.50 euros. As a result ferries - where this is most popularly bought - only stock a small supply, and if you are hungry the only thing left is a ham, cheese AND tomato toasted sandwhich which can cost anything upwards of 3 euros!
A Tiropita - a cheese pie is also capped at 1.50 euros
Kaseropita - or any other cheese pie is not capped and they can charge any exhorbitant price they want!
My advice is buy a loaf of fresh bread from the bakers for 60 cents, some ham and cheese from any market and make your own sandwhich at home at pack it with you if you are REALLY desperate for something so basic, otherwise spend your money on some real food thats really worth the money. Oh and avoid the Greek salad, but more on that tommorow.
the forests of Vrylissia have also been set alight along with the forests of Corinth. I think the count was 30 fires in 24 hours. The Mayor of Vrilissia blamed the fires on arsonists and mentioned the illegal builders his municipality is fighting over land ownership, ownership which is muddled as a result of Ottoman land registry titles, something which has never been cleared up here in Greece, but more on that another time.
More incendiary fires were found at the sites of these forest fires. The latest media craze is looking at the fires in the rest of Europe and Turkey, trying to shift the focus from local events to 'See its not only Greece, it happens elsewhere'.