Greek Crisis & the New Greek Mythology [Interview with D. Harrisson & J. Shrewberry from the UK]

Recently there has been a lot of unfair and negative publicity about Greece and its people.  We believe that we are friendly, peaceful, family oriented, hardworking, relatively low paid, taxpaying citizens unfairly labeled with stereotypes easily handed out to Greeks today by the international media.  But let’s see what other people believe about us and our country.  These are the people that have chosen to move to Greece from their home countries in order to improve the quality of their lives.

We asked them a few simple questions and waited for their honest replies.  Let’s see what they have stated in favor of or against the “New Greek Myths” written by the international media.  


Dave Harrisson & Jill Shrewberry, Olive Grove No 1, Kolymbari, Chania, Crete.

15 March 2012  

We came from Lancashire (UK) in 2006 for health reasons.  In 2005 we toured western Crete by coach, the Chania region was far greener than other areas we had stayed in so we came back later in the year and looked at new build houses in the Chania region, we priced houses in the Chersoneses region but they were over our budget range.  We finally decided to settle in Kolymbari area buying a house built by Minoan Homes.

Our lives as we have retired here are far more relaxed and less stressful.  As a diabetic my health has improved owing to the climate and diet.  After living here for 6 years we both feel the benefits and having a large plot of land we can grow fresh produce all year long.


Myth No. 1:  “Greeks are lazy.  They just lie on their beaches.”  What do you think? 

All these years what we have understood and always felt for Greek people is that they work hard as farmers, tavern owners, apartment owners etc., all year long, as one season finishes another starts, so little time to relax.  

Myth No. 2:  “Greeks are corrupted.”  What do you think?

I really don’t believe they are corrupted at least not that I know of, but some politicians were in the past, that’s why the country is in a mess.  

Myth No.3:  “Greeks are receiving high salaries X 14.”  What do you think? 

The vast majority of the people do not receive high salaries. 

Myth No. 4:  “Greeks are retired when they reach the age of 50.” What do you think? 

Only in certain occupations have an early retirement, as they do in other counties like England, military forces, police, fire, etc.

Myth No.5:  “Greeks are trouble makers.  All they do is rioting!”  What do you think?

I do not believe that Greek people are trouble makers and they do not riot more than any other country.

Myth No.6:  “Greeks have the highest public debt in the world.”  What do you think?

They might have a high debt as other countries do, since all economies borrow money.

Myth No.7:  “Greeks don’t produce anything and if they do it is of low quality.”  What do you think?  

Greece produces mainly farming produce of high quality  and the finest olive oil in the world, other countries mix with theirs to increase the quality of their own, but the politicians need to open the doors to inward investment in manufacturing industries such as engineering, cars, machinery, shipping repair yards with the 2nd deepest port in the world at Souda, exploit natural energy resources such as wind farms solar energy etc. this will help their economy and employment prospects for the younger generation also oil/gas exploration companies to exploit the potential for massive revenue from energy sales also gold exploration which will help their economy, increase their export potential and stop importing food products that they have in abundance, fruit, potatoes, tomatoes ,oranges, etc. of excellent quality their build is strong concrete re-bar to withstand earthquakes but lacks damp proofing to a western standard, but in the 6 years we have lived here they are beginning to get and use such products (and building techniques along with materials have constantly been improving for the last 6 years we have been here). Windows and doors of high quality, double glazing, etc., training for the young generation in best building practise such as apprenticeships. There is an excellent workforce waiting to be used.


Mr. Dave Harrisson and Mrs Jill Shrewberry are currently living in Kolymbari in their dream house designed and built by Minoan Homes.  

 The interview has been carried out by the Minoan Homes staff on 15 March 2012.  If you need to ask Mr. Dave Harrisson and Mrs Jill Shrewberry more questions about their life in Greece, please contact Minoan Homes at




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