What if you decided on the age of 12 to take the wheel of your life and have one hell of a ride? What would you do?…

Born in 1936 the 14th child of a family who finally was left with only 7 children as the time was quite hard in Greece back then…

He used to play barefoot in his neighbourhood, even though his father was a decent cobbler. He managed though to finish his schooling, all six classes. Dreaming of a greater world he made up one bag once he was 12 and sailed off… He did not like the sea, but he dreamed of bigger things in his life and he thought that was the best way to accomplish them.

The sea made the man out of him. The small boy grew up and one day he talked to a friend of his : “Do you know of a good girl that I could get married?” “I have a cousin. Let me talk to my uncle about it.” His friend did and then the man from the sea met the most beautiful girl he has ever seen. Tall, slim with raven silk hair, big dark eyes that had the shape of a fish and a beautiful mouth that haunted his dreams ever since.

The deal was set. And after five years in the sea he returned to marry the girl. They had four daughters together but the big mistress, the sea, always took him away from the love of his life. He immigrated to the States, he even started a small shop in his native Greece, but nothing worked as his job as a sailor, till he decided to settle once and for all.

He managed to build houses for his daughters and a small cottage, but nothing made more of a home than the arms of the woman he loved. At his old days, he enjoyed children and grandchildren and a descent life in a small neighbourhood not far from the port. In all his twists and turns of  his life  he managed to do one thing; to be authentic and true to his heart.

A warm summer afternoon with part of his family around him, he felt it hard to breath, he knew that his end was coming. He looked at those dark eyes intensely, “My love, we had a good life together” He wanted to tell her… but couldn’t. Darkness found him and he knew, he could hear voices, and see shadows. “What now?” He saw lights all the way to the road… and he knew …

I was eight when I returned from the children’s camp thinking that I could actually live on my own since I had learnt the basics. In my life I tried to be independent. In my 39 years of life I am still trying. But, I have never stopped being an independent thinker; hard to be close to people and yet always there for them. If I had the chance to leave home at the age of 12 I would probably end up travelling like my father. Yes, travelling meeting people and at the end at some cabin writing wonderful stories to reach out people along with my husband and my seven children.

The thing is it is never too late to accomplish your dreams. It is only one decision away…


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