- Vol. 01
- Chapter 01
We love our home, slowly.
I was going to turn twelve and my brother was ten. After six years in Rome, we were speaking to each other in Italian. It was Easter when our parents told us we had to move, we were going home. How could home be elsewhere? My parents went back home, and my brother and I moved to Athens with them. How could their home be different from our home? Our time in Italy was a thing of the past and we were to learn to love the land, the skies, the language we were told was home, but which we hardly knew.
My mother was a biologist, an evolutionary biologist with many passions: Pushkin, Flaubert, Rabelais, Nesterov, Bruegel, Matisse, Herodotus, red-figure pottery, Greek shadow theatre and cheese. For her, there was always something more you could do, you were never trying hard enough, you were never interested enough. She was a polymath, a fiery woman suffocating you with her fears. My mother was sedentary and her natural environment was the sea. She loved.
My father was strong and patient. An excellent hasapiko dancer and a good laugh. For him, being work-shy was a sin. He liked Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, the Mamas and the Papas, Elytis and the smell of petrol on his clothes. Once, he said in his sleep: “We are going to have races with cars, motorcycles and social classes!” When he and my mother were young, he would disappear for days on end to be alone with his mountain. But he would always go back to her, he would always wash back to the sea. My father was a nomad. He loved.
Years have passed now. I left my parents' home. Sucked in the maelstrom of the North Sea, which is now my home, I have become an avid reader, a mediocre dancer and singer, a good swimmer and I am always on the run.
We love our home, slowly.I turn to Kerényi to learn about theogony, I ask Camus about the sun, I take my hopes uphill, I drown my fears in the water and I take my hopes uphill once more.
I go back to my parents' home often. What I find there is the sun of my childhood; those endless summers when time slowed down and the soul found its place in the cosmos once again. “I want to love”, I think to myself. But I am always on the run. It is easy to call contemplation sloth and dismiss it in the name of an impending necessity for immediate action. In my next life, which may very well be tomorrow, I hope to be stripped off my hare skin and comfortably build a new home in the shell of a tortoise.