Wednesday, 21 December 2016

Unbelievable ...

We often read of expats who are dissatisfied with the service in shops, bars and restaurants here in Cyprus. It somehow goes with the general whinging and moaning from those who would undoubtedly whinge and moan wherever they lived.

However, and especially for those who are planning to relocate here, this has not been the case in our experience. As we enter our fifth year here the number of times we have been unhappy with service could be counted on one hand. A useful tip, when dealing with Cypriots in all sorts of places, is to smile and offer a cheerful greeting (ideally in your best Greek). The reaction tends to be enormously positive ... it is almost as if the moribund expression on the face of the person serving you has miraculously been switched off.

Of course we have encountered poor service - none more so than in the Cyta shop in Polis. Ann and I went in there a few years ago to arrange for the Internet to be connected. A dour, unsmiling Greek Cypriot kept blocking our every request and was generally unhelpful. To make matters worse he completely ignored Ann, and directed all his comments at me (being the man). We sorted matters out by asking a Cypriot friend to help and he and I went down to the shop, there was a rapid-fire exchange of views in Greek, and three days later we were online. Now when we go into the shop, if he comes forward to "serve" us, we just wave him away and wait for the lovely and helpful girl to be free, or our favourite Leonides (who is so friendly and helpful, you cannot quite believe it).

Normally, on the rare occasions we are not welcomed in bars and restaurants, the business does not get a second chance and we vote with our wallets. But this is so rare, and we find a warmth from so many people. The girls in the supermarket are fantastic, apart from the little fat woman on the deli counter. We now just ignore her and wait for one of the others to serve us.

The whole point of this morning's blog is to highlight the unbelievably good service we have encountered from a British business. Over three years ago we bought an Android TV box from a shop in Paphos. My late friend Dave took me down there and introduced me to Brian who runs the business. In the last three years I have bought the occasional bit of kit from there and emailed him for advice about computers, iPads and the like. He found us a "new" iMac when ours died and it was a fabulous deal.

But on Sunday our TV box just would not cooperate at all. Fearing the worst I emailed Brian and he tried to help via email, but to no avail. In torrential rain I drove to Chlorakas, and went in to see him. Welcoming as ever, we went to his bench and he tried all he knew to get our box to work. After an hour and a half, we were still no further forward. And then, as if by magic, Brian (with the help of a paper clip) managed to get some life. The Android icon (a little green robot) was lying on its side and looking poorly.

We agreed that he would completely wipe the box and start from scratch. This he did and he was about to start downloading the various addons I had had on there. This was something I could happily do at home, and so (having switched the box off and on a couple of times to check all was okay) the box went back into its bag. Reaching for my wallet, I asked him what I owed him. "Free of charge" was his reply. I insisted that I pay him something but he was adamant.

Incredible and generous service and I have no hesitation in recommending him for computers, tablets, TV boxes and the like. If you are coming to live in the Paphos region, he is - or should be - your first port of call. You will find him Here

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