Friday, 18 July 2014

Stone Fortune

The wind set in around the island of Crete—whipping white foam edges on the crests of waves, pulling strands of hair from hairbands and blowing serviettes and paper notes into the air.

I spear olives from the Greek salad and I amuse myself with an old childhood rhyme—a seemingly female orientated superstition—to guess the status of a potential future marital partner:

Tinker Taylor Soldier Sailor —

Rich Man — Poor Man — Beggar Man — Thief

Spoken with a lilt, as I count the olive stones neatly arranged in a row on the side of my plate—this time I have eaten five. Although not in need of a 'Rich man,' the outcome is desirable—I smile. A charming superstition, but of course not wanting to tempt fate, I generally do make sure that I eat more than one and if necessary, I will continue to eat more than six olives—silly eh? ... And luckily—I love olives.

Holidaying in Greece at the moment, I'm sure this ritual would be greeted by puzzled looks from the Greeks, who are more fatalistic by nature. Life is what it is and you take the rough with the smooth—no point complaining—get on with it, or turn it around so that it fits the way you want.

When it comes to being 'rich' there are so many other facets to it than monetary richness alone. I have only to look around me at the beautiful island on which I find myself—Crete—I feel rich and privileged to be able to be here.

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