Humans of Athens: Portraits of a City

Humans of Athens: Portraits of a City

The tapestry of any city is woven stitch by stitch by the people who call it home.  From flag-hoisters to alfajores sellers and café owners, Insider sets out to chronicle our wonderful capital in a weekly photo essay of interesting Athenian personalities, encountered on the streets of Athens. Images by Molly Herring.

Martina Mathe, Traveler and Alfajores seller

“I am from Argentina, but Greece has always been one of the dreams of my life since I can recall. Two years ago, I came to Athens for 6 days and I was like I need to live here. I wanted to stay for a long time, but I was living in Denmark at the time. Last March, I decided to go home to Buenos Aires to visit family for 3 months, but it ended up being 10 months because the borders closed for COVID. In October, when borders finally opened to come here, I came to meet my boyfriend, who is half Greek. We worked in a cafe in Exarchia until everything closed down. It was an amazing place, so full of energy, and I love cooking. We had classes for Zumba, yoga, meditation, and people from all over the world. Now we are just waiting for things to open. I am a traveler. I spend my life going with the flow and I try to get to know as many cultures as I can, and as many places as I can. It is an endless discovery of people, of places, of the world, of myself.” 

George Stefanis, Flag-hoister at the Panathenaic Stadium

“My favorite part of living in Athens is going to the sea. I live in Glyfada, and the coast is beautiful. I work here at the stadium on security. Just go to the booth and ask for George, I am the only one.”

Katerina Kekkou, Co-owner Kékkos Bakery

“Kékkos is a family business, but it is also my second home. I learned so much from my parents when they used to work here with me. I love this place as if it were my child, I love this job and everything that comes with it. Living in Athens, I can be at the sea in a minute, or go visit the mountains. I love the weather, I love the people, I love the surroundings. There are so many nice places where you can go and relax and feel close to nature. I think this is it- the chance to be near nature and to let it take away the stress and the bad things, and to know that you will always have the blue sky.”

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