REP LIFE SEASON 3: THE FIRST TWO MONTHS

Get comfy cos it’s going to be a long one!

On one hand, it seems crazy to think we’ve already been here two months. As you get older, the years whizz by and you wonder where the time has gone. I still feel like I was in Tenerife only five minutes ago but six and a half months has gone by since I left. On the other hand, I feel so comfortable and settled here that part of me feels like Cyprus has always been home. Cyprus is great and I love it but it is also hard work.

The island itself has stolen my heart. I feel like I’m betraying Tenerife as I always thought we would end up there, however, since Cyprus, my view has changed. So far, I love my life here. Both myself and Ash feel happy and comfortable. It’s easier to get by as a great deal more people speak fluent English here than anywhere else I’ve been and British products are also more easily accessible so there is no need to miss many of your home comforts. It’s one of the benefits of once being part of the British colony and still having British bases. Although it is a great location for British expats, there is still a strong Cypriot culture here so really, there is the best of both worlds. If you want the local life, it’s on the doorstep. If you want the British life, it’s also on your doorstep. The Cypriot people are so friendly and helpful, in contrast to the Spanish and Canarians who unless you know them can seem a bit off.

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The only thing I can really knock about Cyprus is supermarket prices. Food is extortionate! It is honestly cheaper to eat out or order in than go food shopping and cook for yourself. Even the cheaper shops like Lidl cost an arm and a leg. Ignoring that, I could honestly see myself and Ash making a life for ourselves here.

The other thing that puts me off besides the cost of groceries is the local language. Whenever I pictured myself living in Tenerife, I picture myself getting to a point where I can speak a decent amount of Spanish. I love the language and have spent quite some time learning what I know so far. I always pictured having bi-lingual kids who can speak fluent Spanish. I know if I lived in Cyprus, I would probably never learn Greek. For one, it is a lot more complicated due to the lettering system but also because everyone here speaks such good English that there wouldn’t really be a need for it.

I love living here, I feel very happy and content. I always love being at home. I adore our apartment and the little life we are creatinng here. We discovered that rent prices are relatively cheap too so if we did decide to make the move, it would definitely be afforable.

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My driving has come on leaps and bounds. I don’t know if it because I am now driving the same side of the road I learnt on and it makes more sense or what it is but I never worry about driving any more. I feel comfortable driving at night now which is something I would previously get very anxious about, I don’t fret about parking any more rarely having issues and I feel more natural with it, I don’t have to think as much. Obviously, I’m still a fairly new driver and I’m not without my occasional blips but for the most part, I’m fairly confident in my driving.

I have had quite a few new experiences since being here which may seem pathetic but I am quite proud of. One being I went through a drive-thru, something I had never even considered before because of my nerves with driving but it just shows how far I’ve come. Another was my first segway experience. The biggest one and most important one to me is that I got off a boat in the middle of the sea! I’m not an overly confident swimmer so have never ventured out further than where I can touch the floor but I climbed down from a boat and spent a good ten minutes in the sea. Fair enough, I had a noodle to help me but this was a big step for me.

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The team here is just as dramatic as any other season, if not more so. There is always the standard drama involved with a group of reps but here is either a lot more petty or a lot more serious. I honestly cannot be bothered with it and happy that we can just keep to ourselves far away from it.

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Then we come to the reason I’m actually here in Cyprus. Good old work! In some cases, I love it and think it is better than other seasons. Other cases, I feel like it is slowly killing me. The general day to day here is a lot easier as it is much more relaxed. A main part of our job is dealing with complaints and for the past two seasons, I have had to constantly argue with customers, defending their complaints and trying not to dish out a single penny of compensation. This was always fun when customers head back to the UK and customer relations go against everything you have done, whack ingout a wad of cash making you look like a twat who is shit at their job. The Cyprus management have a different view point and think everything should be dealt with here in resort to make the customer happy. This means that even the slightest complaint, we can dish out compensation. This makes our jobs and days a hell of a lot easier and less stressful.

On the other hand, there is only one airport rep which means we have to work an awful lot of late nights in addition to hotel duties seeing the flights in. In my two previous destinations, there has been an airport team and as a hotel rep, have had to work an airport shift a maximum of once a week. Here, I feel like we live in that bloody airport. I understand it needs to be done and it’s part of the job and blah blah blah but it is far too much in addition to our hotel duties. Working 9-5 in hotels and then straight to the airport to work until 11pm is not fun. That’s if the flights are on time. A few weeks ago, we worked a delay. This means we worked from 9am-4am the next morning before going back to work at 9am until 5pm and then straight on a boat trip. Exhausting! Last week, we kicked off about the amount of hours we were working so we are hoping a new system will work better.

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Cyprus is a tricky one. I love the place, love the people, love my little life with Ash here and I feel very content. However, aspects of work are driving me insane resulting in a lot of ranting about the job. It’s been such a whirlwind that I’m still not entirely sure what I think of this season but one thing I know for sure is that myself and Ash are happy here. Might we make a life here? We’ll have to wait and see…

 

Ash’s thoughts

Just over two months now I have been living in Paphos and that is all it has taken for me to fall in love with Cyprus. Just before I left for Cyprus my plan was to finish the season, then to move to Tenerife to start my life there. I planned of getting my own apartment and hopefully working for Jet2 on a local contract, well that plan has now been blown out of the water…

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Cyprus already feels like my home. I do not feel as if I ‘work’ here but as if I belong here.
My apartment is amazing, I honestly could not want a better place for me and Steph to live in. We have a two bedroom apartment with an ensuite and even our own balcony (which we love). After a bit of snooping we managed to find out the rent is around 350 euros a month also which split between two of us is more than affordable.

The hotel I work in I absolutely adore. I thought my hotel was ‘one big family’ last year, where as this hotel is a colossal family! Every day they even care to ask how Steph is doing and allow us to eat here any time we wish.

The island is beautiful, with some of the clearest ocean waters I have ever seen. The island is also relatively English speaking which is always nice and helps ease any situation. 

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However, Cyprus also does have its downsides too in my opinion. First of all the price of living, food etc is atrocious. Back home in the UK and even the Canaries were dirt cheap but Cyprus’ food is mostly being imported therefore inflating the prices. Also, the majority of the Island within the tourism industry closes down for about four months of the year due to the ‘mainstream’ tour operators not flying as frequently over winter.

Talking about our industry, the only dislike I have within my current job is the airport shifts are too frequent for me. I’m definitely more of a hotel ‘sales’ kind of man and do not like having to work the airport three shifts a week (and sometimes 15 hour days). However, we are hopeful that a new system will lighten the load a little!

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In summary, I do love Cyprus. I have gone into this season with a completely different perspective due to being with Steph and I feel the island is a good fit for where we want to be in life. I will not throw all my eggs into one basket, we both want to see the world and there are plenty of countries we still need to visit but I have a good feeling about Cyprus.

We will have to see…


All opinions are my own and just that: opinions. This blog post is not sponsored or endorsed in any way.

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