In the past, when people found out I was from Greece, most would ask where they could find the best Greek cuisine. I was surprised that with a country so rich in history, culture and beauty, people thought of food first when they thought of Greece. Lately, many have been asking about the forced austerity measures and the public protests in Greece. My response has been don’t be surprised if austerity measures and protests happen in America. Although people gave a second thought to what I said, most shrugged it off as impossible. Austerity measures and public protests here in America? Well, there are similarities that can’t be ignored: A growing government where more people are employed by the government than ever before, entitlements for able bodied workers that choose not to work, public companies that are a waste of funding, corruption, and a growing gap between the rich and the poor.
Greeks are used to tough times and they will get over their latest hurdle. They have relied on family support for centuries. Young adults, parents and grandparents usually share a home. Sharing the costs of living and every member helping out has been the normal way of life for Greeks and other Europeans. Aside from the financial benefit of a family living together, there are social and health benefits as well. Free babysitting and day care allows parents to maintain a more active social life. Elderly are kept close by and active. Maybe austerity measures will be good for our society. I am an optimist.
BTW the best Greek cuisine is served at Emorfily’s in Boston. If I can persuade her to share her recipes, the general public will also be able to enjoy fine Greek cuisine… in Providence.
By George Potsidis