November was coming to an end when a good comrade’s motto crossed my mind: “November is the right time to sow”. So, I picked up some of the broad beans I’d put aside from last year, I threw them in a pouch and headed for the plot to sow them. As I was about to start my small rototiller, I heard some familiar hammer strokes –bang bang!– and the voice of a kid mumbling. I popped out to the lemon and orange trees orchard to find out that little Yannis was tinkering in a corner. He’d seen me earlier, but he hesitated to talk to me, so he started hammering a bit harder in order for me to spot him.
– Hey, Yannis, what are you up to?
– I’m making my little house! Come take a look.
– Good for you, Yannis, it looks cool; we used to make stuff like that too when we were kids.
– Yeah, but ours is better. My dad laid down those planks and then my friends and I took over. I like little houses; when I’m done with my homework, my friends and I come over here to construct this one, and then we hang out, joke around and share a laugh or two. We also have a little dog, we feed it with food from our house and it hangs out with us! We eat oranges too; check out how many orange trees my grandfather has planted. We also play around with the soil, making little towers and digging pits. When it rains, we get into the house to keep ourselves dry, but I actually don’t like it when it rains a lot because our moms come here and take us home.
I felt like I was hit by an avalanche of images that took me back in time where I could see myself as a young boy. But what pleased me even more was that it only gets a couple of simple and beautiful things for some kids to feel happy –even though I was under the impression that nothing is the same any more. You see, although much has changed, or at least we’re led to believe it has, there’s always going to be that yeast and that hope, spicing up people’s lives.
Seeing me silent, Yannis decided to voice something out once again: “I’m in first grade now, I’ve even learned how to spell my name, I like school and what Miss gets us to do is just child’s play, but I still like those little houses best.”
In the end, I didn’t get to sow those broad beans, but there’s always tomorrow.
Translated into English by Nikos Loutraris
He was born and grew up in Pirgi village of Chios. He studied History and Archeology. He and his family maintain a traditional tavern in Emporios.