“I don’t care about the whereabouts of the job. It can be underground as far as I am concerned. I don’t mind losing the sun as long as I can earn some money,” said a desperate unemployed man living the ongoing drama of recession and subsequent poverty in debt-ridden Greece.
Greek –Australian lawyer and immigration expert Aristotle Paipetis told the Australian that such claims reflect the extent of the Greek people’s despair and the dead end they are facing in their home country. However, there are many who are not qualified enough to migrate to Australia in search of better job prospects, according to Paipetis.
Migrating to Australia seems very appealing to many Greeks living in poverty amidst the insecurity concerning their future. The current situation has changed Australia’s image in the eyes of the Greek people. The Greek migrants there turned into “lucky” people instead of so far “poor” souls. The wildness and the kangaroos suddenly became popular, attractive and interesting.
What was once a boring fairy tale told by the elders has now become the number one topic of discussion among young unemployed Greeks. Australia has turned into the Promised Land, especially for those who decided to return to Greece several years ago to follow their loved ones, get married and start a family.
Marietta Chatzichristaki belongs to this group of people. 34 years ago, Marietta traveled to Greece, got married and had a family of her own. She could not escape the general crisis and soon she found herself and both of her adult children unemployed. Last month she made up her mind to return to Australia. She would return, her children would migrate. “We left everything as it was. We just took off. The house, the furniture, the dog are all behind. We couldn’t take it anymore. We tried to make a living but it was not possible. There is no hope left in Greece. Not even with the new government,” commented Chatzichristaki.