We arrived on Greece’s west coast by ferry and the following days hitchhiked further into the country. Our plan was to eventually travel to one of the Greek islands in the east, to receive arriving refugees and migrants and help and support them at the very beginning of their long, troublesome journey through Europe.

City of the Stateless

After less than a week of slow traveling we decided to go directly to Athens and start with what we came for. The network of supporters is very active in Athens, it is people from all over the world. Things seem well-organized. Unfortunately the government seems not to be part of this first aid at all. It is anarchists and other left-wing people, who stand outside the system, who move things forward. And they are being sabotaged and hindered wherever possible. Police is guarding the interest of those who go according to the plan, but all our rules and laws are of no use in this exceptional situation. The European asylum policy is not solution orientated. Politicians are trying to push people back, so everything can go on as it used to. It’s not gonna happen. People keep on coming, that’s a fact. The way this is being handled by authorities is a joke.

Meeting at the melting pot

Athens was supposed to be only a starting point, because we had some contacts there. But the city didn’t let us leave again. For three weeks we stayed, meeting amazing people, Iranians, Greeks, Afghans, Icelanders, Swiss people and many more. Interesting to experience that where one comes from is basically just a fun fact, like something that we have or don’t have in common, something I might mention in our first small talk because we don’t have anything else to talk about. In the end it doesn’t matter at all, or it shouldn’t. Yet people are being sorted out by nationality at the borders, and this is deciding their fate. How can anybody claim to judge a person just by the landmass they were born on?

The projects in Athens all made a lot of sense and it felt like the people being involved were actually changing something. However, one thing our travel has learned us insistently, is, that change is possible everywhere, all the time, in any situation. It’s not like one has to go climb the highest mountain to realize something about life, it is happening to everyone constantly and in very different ways. We may be thriving for change or let’s rather call it development, improvement, but we will never be in control of what is happening to us. We can only stay open and make something good out of what we receive. Everyday we might talk about what is wrong with the system and be angry at the people at the top, but actually doing something, just a little bit helpful, feels much better.

We are still on the road.

Follow the ongoing journey and check out our music and art on A NEW KIND OF HOME

Published by Lena and William Sikker