A Weekend in Cyprus

A few years ago I had the opportunity to interview for a job in Cyprus.  The company had agreed to fly me out for the weekend and since I had never been, of course I said yes!  I imagined beautiful white sandy beaches surrounded by clear blue waters.  But what was I thinking? I wasn’t going there on holiday! I had to keep my head in the game.

The flight to Cyprus was 5 hours from London.  Having traveled to Japan on many occasions, 5 hours really isn’t a very long flight.  However, I felt extremely restless and when we landed I was rather shocked by what I saw.  This might seem silly but I felt like I was entering a war zone.  Everything was covered in dust and there was barbed wired on many of the buildings.

But never mind my initial impression–I told myself that I was probably just tired and nervous about the interviews that would take place the next day.  I decided to venture out to town and somehow ended up at a Chinese restaurant and had my first ever Cypriot Chinese meal.  I knew we’d be having Cypriot food the next evening so I wanted to try something different. It was surprisingly good, even comforting.

The next day, after several interviews and uncomfortable role plays, while stuck in a stuffy office building, I was excited to try an authentic Cypriot meal.  I love Mediterranean food, but to my disappointment the dishes were unimpressive and even the olives weren’t up to par.  Perhaps I wouldn’t be moving to Cyprus after all…

Before heading back to London I ended up having one last meal in Cyprus.  It was probably the best meal I had while I was there.  Don’t laugh, but I had a damn good ham and cucumber sarnie for only £2.50 (Cypriot pounds).  On my way back to the airport I saw signs that read ‘F*CK THE UN’.  Erm…okay.  I later found out that as I was leaving Cyprus, refugees were fleeing to the country from Lebanon.

I’ve always wanted to travel to places that would open my eyes to something completely different.  I like to be blown away and to be honest, I was.  And reading back on this post it might seem like I didn’t enjoy myself at all during my first visit to Cyprus.  I’ll be honest, I didn’t.  But to not feel comfortable and feel completely out of my realm was actually a good and humbling experience.

*****

I doubt I’ll be going back to Cyprus anytime soon but I do wish I had more time to explore Nicosia, the beaches, and take more photos! Sadly, I only have a few shots which I’ll share anyway because it looks like Monkey had a good time!

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6 thoughts on “A Weekend in Cyprus

  1. My cousin (wife’s cousin anyway) was posted in Cyprus as a UN peacekeeper many years ago. He has a lot of stories of his time there (Canadian Army). Loved the posting, but, would never go back. He did say lots of good things about the beaches.

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