I remember the pose so vividly as if I took the photo yesterday. There he was standing with his hands shoulder-high making the peace sign. I laughed when I took this picture as a young teenager, but reflecting on it now I realize there is so much more in this picture of my dad. The image echoes the words of Nikos Kazantzakis “I felt once more how simple and frugal a thing is happiness: a glass of wine, a roast chestnut, a wretched little brazier, the sound of the sea. Nothing else.”
My family and I had just spent the day visiting my father’s village in the southern part of Greece. The sun-drenched western part of Greece is home to some of the most beautiful beaches. This particular place is where he had many fond childhood memories. He and his siblings would run and splash in the water at this very beach.
Now many years later, there he was standing with his tousled grey and white speckled hair, thick Greek moustache that secretly hid his upper lip, and a twinkle in his eye that told me he was at peace with himself.
In the photo the bright engine red cafe chairs decorate the background and remind me of the wonderful smells that drifted to the beach from the taverna.
My dad loved food. And I know he would love Fooducopia. He wasn’t looking for fancy stuff on his plate. He wanted genuine. That is what he taught his children. A simple whitewashed stone restaurant made him content. More than any five stars. He would rather just look up in the sky to see them.
Thanks dad for teaching me what is important.
Happy Father’s Day!