Tuesday, March 18, 2008

The constrasts of Cyprus

Walking down one of the main roads of Larnaka, towards the Post Office, I realised what a contrast there is between the view on my right (the recently renovated Fanoroumani Church):

and the view on my left:

(Either photo can be clicked to show a bigger version).

It's typical of Larnaka. The whole city seems to be in a process of construction, or re-development. New houses and blocks of flats go up - slowly - and old houses are pulled down - not so slowly. Other old houses, perhaps now officially listed, just sit there getting more run-down and tatty. And there are patches of wasteland, where cars park and weeds grow rapidly.

Yet there are also some lovely buildings, like the Greek Orthodox Churches, and some of the houses. Not just the grand, wealthy-looking homes, either. There are some beautiful tiny terraced stone houses around the area we used to live, well-kept with attractive gardens.

Yet, more and more, it seems that many people don't care. They are out at work making money all day, so they don't have time to do anything much with their houses. They don't care if they are beautiful, so long as they are warm and efficient to run. And if they have to knock down one of the old-style houses, they will build as many flats as they can afford, so that they can rent them all out and make yet more money.

Yes, capitalist thinking is alive and well in Cyprus.

1 comment:

Amy @ The Q Family said...

I found your site through Carnival of Cities. I love it! We have a friend who recently moved back to Cyprus and we have been planning to visit them. Your site is very informative!

Amy @ The Q Family