The story of an English couple

Whenever we came to Aegina, we would meet a wonderful couple from England. We would say “Hello” each other in passing because we meet often, mostly at Nikos Beach Bar. In this article, I will be writing about some of their points of view about this island: why did they move and what was the transition like? What are the advantages and disadvantages of living on an island? Are they missing something?

Freddie first came to this island 41 years ago. He was at a tour around Athens, Peloponnese, Poros, Methane, Hydra – a classic Greek tour. The next year he came to Aegina on vacation, and that’s when plans for his stay began. He would come with his better half Karen whenever they had days off. Already after the second arrival, Karen said that it was her house. Then they started coming twice a year for ten days each, but it was more profitable for them to rent an apartment for a year than to pay twice for 10 days in one of the hotels. They would just get on the plane, all the things would be waiting for them in the apartment. They have been living on Aegina for the last 6 years, and as they say, they have never regretted leaving England.

While talking to them, I realized that it is beautiful to visit the island in the off-season. During the winter, the colors are much beautiful than during the summer, there are various colors on the trees, there are beautiful flowers everywhere, and during the summer, the green color prevails. What’s even more interesting is that there are no traffic lights or roundabouts here. The streets are narrow, and the main means of transport are motorbikes.

When Great Britain left the European Union, they had to prove that they lived here in order to stay at this island. They needed a lot of papers for that, and the police interview lasted 5 hours. Fortunately, they managed to get permission.

From their point of view, there are not many bad things about this island. Some of them are bad internet connection. There are no problems with thieves, crime, people leave keys in their cars, phones on tables, thefts are very rare. Even if something disappears, they think that tourists stole. Once someone tried to steal a motorcycle with a sidecar, but the police found the thief very quickly. The island is small and since that motorcycle was specific, everyone knew who owned that vehicle. They tried to transport it to Athens but were quickly stopped. On the island, they like to say that during the winter there are 3 policemen who work actively. One is at work, the other is working the opposite shift and the third is sleeping. During the summer, the police from Athens come here to punish drivers without helmets or who drive too fast, but that is rare.

Some of the disadvantages of this island are the narrow streets, especially in the town of Aegina. It looks like that part of the island was planned for motorcycles only. Even in one-way streets it is difficult to pass with a car. During the winter in Agia Marina, where they live, you can find working only a pharmacy, a supermarket, a cafe, and a restaurant

They personally miss Thai food but managed to find a spice shop. There is no Chinese food, and everything else can be found, such as special types of chees, ingredients for the so-called English breakfast, there is a lot of fish that they buy at low prices and prepare it by themselves. They even have chefs from Pakistan, a beer house with a beautiful menu, Italian food, and many others. There is no need to write about gyros, we all know that Greece is known for its phenomenal food. We haven’t find yet a gyros we didn’t like on this island.

Swimming in the sea is a real pleasure for them, but not only during the summer. They bathe here throughout the year. The season starts in mid-April and ends in mid-November. In the off-season, they enter the water for a short time if the weather is not bad.

Their grandchildren and other relatives come to visit them and also some of their friends who stay overnight at their place or rent apartments. Here they met people from different countries, with whom they like to talk when they come on vacation.

Every day they are in different restaurants, and they have known some of the owners since they first arrived on this island. They are happy and satisfied, always with a big smile on their face. To me, as the writer of this article, it seems like a big dream and I wouldn’t object if I could spend a part of my life with my wife on this island.

Thanks for reading, please visit me again :).