Maria is a server at what has become one of our favorite pizza and salad restaurants just across the street from our hotel. Maria was born in Bulgaria and now lives and works in Limassol, Cyprus. She is a single mom. She has a five year old son. He is visiting his grandma (her mom) in Bulgaria for the summer, giving Maria a chance to work more hours and make extra money to send back to Bulgaria to help her fulfill her dream.
Elena is a server at what has become one of our favorite all around restaurants in the Old Port of Limassol. She also has a second job serving at another restaurant in the evening. Elena was born in Romania and now lives with her husband in Limassol. Elena is working two jobs to help fulfill her dream.
Both of them are working hard, making higher wages in Cyprus than they could back home, and they are each saving for their dream. Both have a dream of moving back to their home country to be near their families and friends. Maria’s dream is to build a hotel in Bulgaria. In fact, after years of saving, construction of her hotel has begun. Elena’s dream along with her husband is to build a house in Romania and begin a family, and construction on her new house has begun as well.
There are many stories like Maria and Elena’s in other parts of the world, including the United States of America, where people working for higher wages send money to their family in their home country to help them in their daily lives, many times in hopes of bringing them to another country one day for a better life.
Their stories remind us to live each day with the attitude of gratitude and be thankful for what we have.
As we talk with people when we travel, they ask where we are from, if we are on holiday or work, about our family and then they tell us where they are from, what brought them here, about their family. Before you know it you hear stories that are often amazing, and you’ve made a new friend.