Today I met this man.
I was near the cemetery on the hills that surround Stapanakert and I saw him walking. Bending forward like an elder that worked hard in his life.
He carried two bags full of vegetables (greens) and a kitchen knife with some earth. I walked beside him and he looked at me.
– Barev Barev
He said something in Armenian, I can’t speak Armenian at all.
I tried with English, he tried with Russian. No way. We can’t speak each other but we smiled and kept walking together. He had a sad and peaceful face.
I took some photos, he stopped, looked at me and, using the hands, invited me to eat in his place. I was very hungry but said not, don’t know why. Immediately regretted.
We walked silently for a while. He stopped again, looked at me and pointed the cemetery with his knife. He lost 2 sons during the war and they are buried there. He put a beg on the ground and hits his chest with the hand.
After some time in silence, he invites me again to have lunch with him.
– Aiò (yes)
His house is new but empty. In the bright living room just a table, three chairs and three photographs: the portraits of the two sons and the wife. She died as well. I don’t know when and why.
He showed me the bath where to wash my hands.
He cooked and after we ate together, silently. A long and deep silence. Sometime we look each other in the eyes and smiled, no words. His hands shake. He put all the food on my side so I can take it easily.
I has a tattoo on his arm “1933”. I guess is his date of birth.
After eating he made the tea and we drink it, again, in silence. He took some chocolate for me. I took his hand with both my hands and say thank you. He smiles.
I stand up, hug him, take my camera and come back in the street.
I don’t know his name.
13 November 2010