Postcard from... Limassol
On the surface of it, Hong Kong and the gaudy beach resort of Limassol on the southern Cypriot coast do not have a huge amount in common.
But come Sunday morning, a small stretch of open land in both cities becomes home to hundreds of Filipinos, South Asians and domestic workers from other countries who lay their picnic mats down in the shade of the trees and share tales of their week. Most of the young women will have been working their fingers to the bone doing the cooking, cleaning and childminding for well-off families in this resort town of 100,000 residents.
They form just one part of the intriguing ethnic make-up of the city, which on the surface of it is just a package-tourist Mecca where holidaymakers can sit on their tiny balconies in ugly high-rises and gaze at a grey sea while listening to pop music from the nearest “Gentlemen’s Club”.
But look at the signs on the restaurants, and many of them are in Russian. This section of Limassol’s population has been getting the most attention recently, with talks of their ill-gotten gains being snatched away by the European Union and IMF in a bailout deal.
In reality, there is a whole cross-section of Russian society.
Most likely there are some crooks, but there are also hundreds of businesspeople who were attracted by the low taxes and balmy weather. Then there are the young Russian women shipped in to serve them in the beachfront bars.
- 1 I was a Woman Against Feminism too
- 2 Fifty Shades of Grey movie trailer released: First look at Jamie Dornan as Christian Grey
- 3 Is Gideon Levy the most hated man in Israel or just the most heroic?
- 4 Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda
- 5 The Tory donor whose firm is one of Britain’s biggest tax avoiders - with HMRC's blessing
Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster to ensure his meals aren't poisoned
Peaches Geldof: Her final day – and her fatal decision
Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda
Israel-Gaza conflict: Israel may have committed war crimes, says UN human rights chief
Taiwan plane crash: Typhoon Matmo could have caused TransAsia Airways disaster, airline suspects
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Vladimir Putin is given 'one last chance' to end hostilities in Ukraine
The 'scroungers’ fight back: The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering
Arizona execution lasts two hours as killer Joseph Wood left 'snorting and gasping' for air
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Ukrainian military jet was flying close to passenger plane before it was shot down, says Russian officer
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Massive rise in sale of British arms to Russia
£30000 - £38500 Per Annum + 25 days holiday, pension, subsidised restaurant: C...
£34000 - £37000 Per Annum + excellent benefits: Clearwater People Solutions Lt...
£40000 - £45000 per annum + Pension, Holiday, Flexi-time: Progressive Recruitm...
£280 - £320 per day: Progressive Recruitment: C#, WinForms, Desktop Developmen...