Lunacy has taken over the country

LUNACY has been scaling unprecedented heights in the People’s Republic lately and I am not just talking about the lawless city-state of Paphos, which will hopefully be granted independence when we finally agree with our Turkish Cypriot brothers how many states the virgin birth would produce.

How we are coping

Married couple with children

Alexis and Annita, 48 and 41, have been married for twenty-five years and have three children – a 22-year-old daughter studying abroad in London, a 20-year-old son studying in a private college in Nicosia and a 12-year-old daughter in a private school.

Eat like a king and pay like a peasant

Everyone’s complaining about the rising cost of living but there are precious few signs that anyone’s changing their habits. Restaurants are still busy; food delivery outlets and takeaways are booming. Clubs are always packed and you’ll rarely snare a good seat at the cinema because teenagers and couples have got there first.

Depression in fashion industry will hit home

Global credit crunch? Belt-tightening? There are few signs of them here. Take a walk down Makarios Avenue, past the cafes and restaurants lining the street. There are boutiques packed with handbags boasting a 1000-euro price tags and shoes clocking in at 750 euros.

Feeding four on 85 euros a week )

The Economist magazine has a Big Mac Index to measure the price of the same good around the world. I’ve got the Mixed Pickle Index.

In the microcosm of Nicosia’s supermarkets, that index shows wild swings depending on upmarket stores where you may or may not want to be seen, to the dirt cheap discount outlets where the well-heeled dare not venture.

Talking to a far-flung family for free

I’m about 15 years too old to be a true child of the internet generation, (I remember when the Spectrum 48k was the height of cool) but I’m a fast learner. Being an avid fan of anything new, by the age of 17 I was chatting away on ICQ under the moniker wildcat (not the cleverest pseudonym in light of the many dodgy people surfing the chat lines).

Don’t bin stale bread or ripe fruit

Summer is always a bad time for bread, fruit and vegetables. As the temperatures soar, fruit and vegetables seem to wilt and perish instantly and bread goes mouldy or stale before you get a chance to use it. Add to that price increases on all three, then finding ways of keeping waste down are even more important.

Title deeds and state revenue


I could not help but think that the answer to the current government’s need for more money might be a lot more easily addressed by solving the title deeds problem than by other proposed measures such getting the Church to pay back-taxes.

Scooter gangs in Protaras


My wife and I have been visiting Cyprus for the past ten years, staying in the Pernera area of Protaras. We look forward to meeting our dear friends and to soak up the laid back atmosphere of the town.

Tourism is dying in Paphos


Tourism is dying fast in Paphos. We had visitors at both Greek and English Easters, the seafront at Paphos was and still is a building site, Yeroskipou is a mess, visitors liked the Church and the Cyprus delights.

There is no water in the public toilets in town and several of them are unhygienic and a disgrace.