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Horse made of glass - Part 15 Horse made of glass - Part 15
by Katerina Charisi
2017-08-27 10:56:48
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A Horse Made of Glass -- Part Fifteen

…When they were about to leave, the lawyer stopped her putting his hand softly on her shoulder and told her “the papers won’t secure you’re getting back any money; If things go bad and if you take him on a trial you can use those papers. Still, no one says he’s paying you back. You insisted on those papers and I don’t feel good getting paid for something that might prove useless, so I just want to be clear with you.”

She turned her back and dashed the stairs and got in the car and when he asked her why she went back she said she had to use the bathroom.

Maybe we were meant to fail from the beginning, after all.

***********************

It took them a year to transform the place; wash off the stone walls and build a fireplace and the bar, add another room for toilet and make wooden benches around and fill the middle with three-foot old fashion iron tables and old traditional tavern chairs. But they finally made it and started working and no one mentioned her father’s money. Weeks went along and months and a year; then another. He soon felt strong enough and confident to return to his old work, despite the doctor’s advices. At first was just slight repairs here and there; a hole in some fence, a loose brick. But then he started getting bigger jobs too. Soon she was running the coffee place all by herself. It was going well, but not too well to pay another person. She woke up each morning and went down the stairs and opened the coffee place’s front door. Late at nights she closed that door behind her and went upstairs to sleep, all exhausted.

kateri_400She never dared to complain, though. She could understand he loved his job too much to quit it. She was sure that things would get eventually better and she could hire someone to release her for a few hours. Their life finally seemed to have gotten in some routine and she waited for him to propose for their wedding; it was the right thing next to happen. But he didn’t. She started mentioning it herself and his answer was always that they didn’t have any money left for a proper wedding. “The place goes well; the town is small though, we ain’t going to have money for a wedding anytime soon.” She told him they didn’t have to do it in a church, but for him that was out of the question: “Hell no, I ain’t let any fat guy in some fancy suit to put me a ring.”

  Thus, the wedding was eventually arranged a couple of months later in the end of August, after long talks and small fights every now and then; she promised to have everything under control and save from all unnecessary expenses. “I don’t care about anything else except getting in that church holding your hand”, she told him and he smiled and that smile was enough praise for her. She asked a town’s girl to sew a plain white dress and decided to do her hair on her own; she bought sugar almonds and tulle and ribbons to make the four hundred agreed bonbonnieres for every guest and paid a few kids a little money to invite the people by going to their houses instead of printing and mailing invitations.

Unfortunately helping her was out of the question too. Each time she asked him for help he promised he would do it all once he gets back from work. The bonbonnieres seemed not to have an end. She cut the tulle in equal squares and counted five sugared almonds and put them in the middle, then shaped a small pouch and wrapped it in equally cut ribbons. She looked at the time and he was always late and she called him on the phone and promised to be back in ten minutes, but she could listen to laughter and voices in the back and he hang up first. Next time she called he didn’t answer. She explained it all to stress and didn’t push him about it. She carried the boxes up and down and continued wrapping sugared almonds in every spare minute she got. She was going upstairs each night and fell on the bed without even taking off her clothes and gave up asking for any help.

A week before the wedding he told her “I have to go to my parents” and she lifted her head and looked at her hands all full of ribbons and tulles and sugar, only then realizing how badly her back hurt. She said “ok, but don’t be late, there are so many things yet to be done, to make the wedding bed and hang the wedding dress and wait for the townspeople to visit and we need to get something prepared for them to eat and buy a few drinks and I need you to be here” and she had said it all in a single breath and in a little panic, for being afraid he would go and leave her on her own again.

He laughed.

“Calm down, alright? Everything will be fine. I trust your stubbornness. I must stay to my parents until the wedding day. I guess you’ll have to ask from someone to help ya.”  She gasped.

“What do you mean you must stay to your parents until the wedding day?”

“It’s the custom”, he said and shrugged. “The groom and the bride must not see each other the last week.”

“And who’s going to do all the work?”

“I’m sure someone will come over to help. It’s not a big deal.”

“It is a big deal. I don’t find it fair at all following that particular custom in our case.”

“What’s our case?”

She raised her arms and let them fall on her sides, gesturing around the house.

“My parents don’t live here. You ask me to spend alone the last week before my wedding, with no one to keep me company and without any help, while you’ll celebrate each day with your folks, isn’t that enough of our case?”

But he left anyway. And she kept wrapping the sugared almonds and cleaning the house and hang the wedding dress and made up the bed and unknown townspeople kept coming and going as she felt their eyes following her and she heard some whispers behind her back but she could be paranoid from tiresome. Three days later and the girl that had sewed the wedding dress knocked the door and she was so relieved seeing someone familiar that she almost cried and told the girl who later became her only friend to come in, almost falling in her arms.

“I can’t believe he did this to me”, she told her later. They sat on the couch with the sugared almonds in the plastic bag and inside the carton boxes and the tulles and ribbons on the floor, trying to finish.

“I am not surprised. That’s how things happen here”, the girl replied and shook her head.

“But it’s a different case. I mean, look at me. All alone before my wedding. I’m not allowing this kind of behavior, no sir.”

The girl laughed and wiped the sweat off her forehead.

“Oh, you will. As long as you chose to live here and live his life, you will accept every single thing you have swore you’ll never accept.”

The hands stayed hanging in the air.

“I’m not living his life! We are starting a life together.”

The girl smiled but her eyes looked sad.

“I wish for you that things go as you want them, and I’m not saying anything else to disappoint you. Let’s end this conversation here. We still have a lot of work to do.”

“How can you say that?”

The girl left the tulle and the ribbons down and took her hands in hers.

“Hun, I am not like you. I was born here and raised here and I am one of them. I have my parents in law at home and they raise my kids and they cook and keep the house clean so I can work. That’s how it goes. I don’t keep any money for me but I have to cope and I always put something aside. But you are not me. You are not one of them. You came here. You have no one to raise your children so you can work and no one will come to do it even if you decide to pay them for. You are a stranger; you have no rights. The way they see it, they gave you this house to rule and this man to take care of and you belong to them and they put up with you only for him because he is their guy and you are only his wife. If you vanished in thin air no one would even blink. They would come over your place and take on from where you left everything. If there are dishes to the sink they will wash. If there’s no food in the pots they will cook. They will wash your kids and put them to sleep and they ‘re gonna sleep on your side of the bed.”

“Jesus.”

“Come on, it’s not that bad once you get used to it. There are two ways to change your life while being on the mountains. You either take him out of here or start a new life away - and I mean away, not in the city but five cities away or an ocean away, or some day before sunrise you get the hell out of there and don’t look back. Never look back. If you look back once, you will come back. And once you came back, you’ll never going to leave again. And you’ll never complain about a thing again. You’ll have accepted it all.”

 *********************************************

Horse made of glass
Part 1 -Part 2 -Part 3 - Part 4 - Part 5 - Part 6Part 7 - Part 8 -Part 9 -Part 10 -Part 11 

Part 12 -Part 13 -Part 14 -Part 15 -


   
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