Monday, 24 September 2012

Syntagma Square (Σύνταγμα)

Just recently, I found myself directly across the road from Syntagma Square for work purposes.

Like all adult Greeks, I have an image in my mind of Syntagma Square. Even though I may have been there only a few times in my life and I now live far away from it, the image of Syntagma Square that I carry in my mind is that of something which is a living part of me. This image is an untarnished one, reminding me of the way I expect to see it, the way I last saw it when I took my children there.

Syntagma Square, 9.30am, 21 September 2012.
The reality of Syntagma Square may not be so clear as my own unclouded, timeless image, shrouded in formality; the meaning of Sytagma Square is more powerful than just an image conjured up in our minds. For Hellenes, Syntagma Square in the present time has become a potent symbol, reminding us of the anger, rage and fury of the common people.

But in the post-rush hour of an early Athenian morning, there is nothing to tell us of the vibrations of indignance felt at Syntagma Square, save the scrambling sounds of the pigeons crowding the birdfeed sellers. The day breaks in gently, giving no clue as to when the dormant turbulence will break out.

The koulouri sellers are still there in the same spot: business as usual. Thanks to Alf Hodges for the photo - my bag was heavy and it was too hot for me to worry about snapping this same shot.

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