Tolis comes from Albania ; he was born in 1985 at Tepelen and came in Greece for the first time in 1993. At the time of the interview his worked as a 'House painter'.
Interview date: 27/02/2006
Researcher who did the interview: Alexandra Siotou
Subfield of the interview: Historical culture
Tolis lives with his parents in Greece. In Albania his father was a butcher and his mother used to work in a patisserie. In Greece his father is a casing worker and his mother is a cleaner. Tolis has worked as a house painter since he was 13 years old. He decided to work, although he was very young, because he wanted to help his family financially and also to make his own money. He expected Greece to be better than it proved to be in reality. In the beginning he had a hard time in adjusting to his host country, because of the language and because he also missed his relatives. He presents an idealized picture of his life in Albania. He stresses the fact that during the communist period in Albania there was a sense of security and peacefulness and there was also love and solidarity among people. On the contrary, in Greece he experiences great competitiveness. His relation to religion is rather superficial. His family is Muslim. His parents want him to get married to an Albanian woman but Tolis himself does not show a preference regarding the nationality of his future wife. He believes that Greek women are different from Albanian women and he talks about these differences. He spends his free time with the music band of which he is member. He talks about the songs he writes, especially about the ones on racism. He writes the songs in the Albanian language, because he feels that the group has greater possibilities of success in Albania than in Greece. He hasn´t yet decided whether he wants to live in Greece or in Albania.