Being English I’m used to waiting patiently in a Queue. It’s what we Brits do best, we’re born to it. It’s almost a national pastime as you’ll often see people patiently waiting and chatting with each other, mostly about the weather.
Here in Cyprus it’s a different matter. There are no queues in Cyprus. That’s not to say Cypriots are hugely efficient compared to Brits. It’s just that most people over here don’t seem to know how to queue. The first queue we experienced over here was at the local hospital. It was quite a surprise when we got registered for health care and made our first appointment with a doctor. We were given a number to show where we were in the waiting list and told to go to the vast waiting room. This room covered all the doctors in the hospital who were seeing out-patients. It was huge and everyone was sat quietly, in the area for their chosen doctor. All were silent and all were staring intently at the door. We sat down and waited. It wasn’t a queue but it was an orderly seated area. We were wondering how many were in front of us when the doctors door opened. Order went out the window as everybody (except my wife and I) leapt to their feet and rushed to the door. It seems the number system was out the window and it was every man, woman and child for themselves… first come, first served. Well, that taught us a lesson. No queues in Cyprus, when the door opens it’s mob rule.
Fast-forward nine years and we’ve just spent an hour in the sit-down queue for the doctor. Not at the hospital theses days, but the more sedate local health centre in the next village. We still get numbers and we all sit around waiting. This time we made the mistake of getting there at 10:30. 10: 30 is coffee break time and nothing, but nothing, gets in the way of the coffee break in Cyprus. So, the four of us sat waiting were not too fussed as there was not much of a queue. But when the doc came back from her break people appeared from nowhere and the old lady sat next to me leapt up and shouted “Me! Me!” This in itself was odd as she was Cypriot, not English. But soon a mob had formed around the poor doctor and the receptionist had to come out and point to all of us, in turn, and tell us who was next. Needless to say we just sat there and waited. We’re good at queuing, us Brits.
Tom Kane © 2017
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The hilarious story of Tom Kane’s move from the UK to living in Cyprus.
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A humorous and interesting tale of a British expats struggle to make a new life in Cyprus By Ken Coston
“If you want to forget your troubles for an hour or two while living through the humorous exploits of someone else’s misfortunes then this is the book for you. I chuckled in some places, worried in some places and was sad in others. Overall, it’s a fun read and well worth the very low cover price. Tom Kane has a style of writing that is very endearing.”
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