Editor's Note: The European Union (EU) is falling apart. It's inevitable. And we've been writing about it since 2011. Right now, there's a lot of talk in the financial press about the possibility of Greece defecting... something the EU has been determined to keep from happening. Its exit would be the first brick to crumble. And there's no way to rebuild the fortress once the crumbling starts. So today, we're bringing back German couple Dieter and Agnes to see how they're handling the news...
Tuesday, January 13, 2015
It wasn't the noise that woke Dieter up. It was the uncomfortable feeling that something odd was happening in the neighborhood.
Call it intuition, a sixth sense, or a side effect of the sardine and red onion sandwich he had devoured just before bedtime... Whatever it was, Dieter was wide awake at 12:07 a.m. and he was compelled to take a look outside.
So Dieter slipped out of bed, careful not to disturb his wife, Agnes, and put on his black, terry-cloth bathrobe and a pair of white bedroom slippers. The slippers were a complimentary amenity from the Fontecruz Hotel in Seville, where Dieter and Agnes had celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary.
Dieter then snuck out of the bedroom and tip-toed toward the front door.
It was cold outside. Little puffs of steam escaped from Dieter's mouth every time he exhaled. Dieter folded his arms across his chest, and leaned out over the front porch steps to survey the neighborhood. He looked to the right and saw nothing but the dim yellow glow of a few street lights. Then he looked to the left... and that's when he grew concerned.
There were two large vans parked about 16 houses down on the left-hand side of the street. Dieter could see the outlines of four or five people carrying stuff out of a house and placing it into the trucks.
"Thieves!" Dieter thought to himself. But they were moving a little too casually for thieves. And they were making a little too much noise.
He sneaked down the street toward the vans to investigate. As he approached, Dieter saw giant letters on the side of the vans...
Midnight Express Moving & Storage
For when you just have to get away
No longer concerned with being inconspicuous, Dieter strolled right up to the house and stood next to the mailbox. The golden letters on the black mailbox were supposed to read "PAPADOPOLOUS" but time and neglect had taken its toll. The gold letters had faded and chipped away. All that was left was, "PAPA LOU."
"Can I help you?" a man with a clipboard asked. The man was shorter than Dieter, by about four inches. And his face was flattened, as if it had been on the wrong side of an argument with a hammer.
"Um," Dieter stammered, "I was just wondering what was going on. I mean... it's a little late in the evening for all this..." And then it hit him... "Hey." Dieter exclaimed, "Are the Greeks moving?"
"I can neither confirm nor deny your inquisition," the man with the clipboard said. "But hey," he winked, "it ain't like we're debt collectors repossessing all this stuff."
The man chuckled, punched Dieter lightly on the shoulder, and pointed to the slogan on his truck, "Sometimes you just have to get away. Right?" he asked.
Dieter smiled. He thought about all the checks he had written to the Homeowners Association over the past three years. That money went right to the Greeks – in order to keep them in the neighborhood, even though Dieter didn't think they deserved to be there.
Now they were leaving. They weren't going to be Dieter's problem anymore. He wasn't going to have to write any more checks. He wasn't going to have to put up with the riff raff on the street. He and Agnes could sit back and enjoy the neighborhood in the way they had always wished for it to be.
"Nice slippers," said the man with the clipboard. "I hear the Fontecruz Hotel is a really nice place."
"It is," Dieter replied, "My wife and I stayed there a few years ago."
"Mr. Rodriguez, just up the street, has the exact same pair," the clipboard man said as he pointed in the direction of the Spaniard's house.
"How do you know that?" Dieter asked.
"I saw them when Mr. Rodriguez asked us to give him a quote last week. They're thinking of moving too."
Dieter's jaw dropped. He was okay with the Greeks leaving the neighborhood. But he liked the Spanish. He would be sad to see them leave.
"They're not the only ones either," the man said. "The Romanos, the O'Briens, and the Almada family have all asked for quotes as well. If this move with the Papadopolous family goes well, we might have a lot of late-night moving sessions in this neighborhood over the next few months."
"You better get back to bed, buddy," the clipboard man chided, "You're gonna have a lot more sleepless nights in the weeks ahead."
Beste regards und gutes trading,
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