Travel: Taking a philosophical view on life

Greece has been battered by the whims of fate more than most countries in the past decade or so, but Athens remains one of the jewels in European tourism’s crown

Porto Heli, a cosmopolitan resort on the eastern side of the Peloponnese peninsula.

A stray cat leaps to safety off sunwashed cobblestones as my taxi races through the narrow streets of Psiri in central Athens, passing elderly men in dark suits and open-necked shirts, huddled together outside cafes, their faces covered with a crosshatch of deep lines, smoking and drinking strong black coffee poured from briki (copper jugs). Leather wholesalers shoulder bales of brightly coloured skins into shadowy workshops, and a furniture maker stoops over the seat of ...