Saturday, 24 December 2016

Oranges at Christmas is live!


When people asked me what will I do on Christmas day, I said I will be home alone, once again.
Same as last year, they felt sorry for me. Which meant they care and I was grateful.
When I tried to explain why I needed to be alone, nobody really understood.
I have to work on my future and this holiday is what I dreamed about for the last two months. I cannot postpone the pursuing of my dream any longer. It is now or never.

On Thursday, and Friday I have worked for more than 42 hours on one of my short stories which I have submitted for publication on Amazon Kindle. No, I didn't write it in two days, I only gathered some new material, added the last bits, modified and corrected all the errors I was able to find and prepared it for publication. I read it five times to make sure it is written in decent English. I couldn't find them all.

The eBook was supposed to be published in 72 hours, but it was live in less than 6.
I am absolutely in tears from emotion. It's an amazing story, please focus on that and not on my raw English.

I am utterly aware of the fact that I wasn't ready, but I will never be ready, so I took my chances and I am proud of myself. 

On Friday night I went to bed at 7 in the morning, which was actually Saturday morning, only after I managed to submit my story, and clicked on publish. But I couldn't sleep for more than 40 minutes. I was too excited and I wanted to keep working on my other stories.
Most of the people I spoke with about my intention, remained silent or said I should wait until my English will improve. But for me, it's a matter of life and death to get published before the end of this year. At any cost, no matter the consequences.

I did what I could to the best of my present abilities. It was exhausting and I hope I won't get only critics. I deserve better.

Now I am working on two of my other stories which I am planning on self-publishing (on paper) in the next two months.
I don't have any spare minute, as I said, it is NOW, or NEVER!

However, I wanted to celebrate Christmas so I cooked some traditional food from my country: cabbage wraps (sarmale), and polenta. I planned on baking bread and sweets, but it is too much for me. I will do it for the New Year's Eve.

The atmosphere in the house is festive. I have a small Christmas tree, lights, fake snow, candles, carols, a fireplace video, oranges...


But I don't have my family, my siblings, the real Christmas tree, the fire in the stove, the natural snow. I could have gone home, but even so, wouldn't have been the same. We are adults now, we stopped believing in Santa Claus, we don't find snow so amazing as when we were children. It is freezing outside as it's freezing inside our souls. The cookies don't taste like the best cookies in the whole world. The vicissitudes of life made us bitter and anxious. The magic is gone.
I only have my memories from a communist regime. An atheist regime which didn't consider Christmas at all. There were no special programmes on TV, nobody was allowed to mention the birth of Jesus, Santa Claus was called Father Frost. He came to schools and kindergartens and gave us a pen, a notebook and maybe a few candies. And we were always so happy and grateful.

We didn't care that the communist regime decided to cut the power light every day or to stop the running water. My family was happy to have a bath in a movable bathtub. It was enough for everyone because they didn't know better. But was it really that way? Somewhere deep down in my heart, I was dreaming about having a hot shower every day in a beautiful bathroom.

During that time chocolate, toys, oranges were almost impossible to find. But my parents and older siblings did their best to find all this stuff somewhere far away from my village. They went to the cities around and stayed in various queues for hours to buy a few oranges and chocolate. Some shops would only sell you one chocolate at the time and maybe half of the kilogram of oranges. People fought for bread, milk, meat, and every essential aliment for surviving. There were no fancy shampoos, no face creams, no shower gels, just hard soaps which we thought were a gift of the Gods.
It was difficult to find a gift for Christmas, so difficult that you might think I am lying.

During my childhood, I have never, ever seen any toys in the village shelf shops, that's why I have always been so amazed when Santa Claus, THE real one, managed to bring us what we've asked for. Toys we've seen on TV or read in books about.

My mother told me that she used to go twenty kilometres on foot to find these toys. Why on foot? Because when it snowed a lot, we were cut off from the world. She's told me that the snow was so high that very step she took, made her sunk into the snow so she had to stop and helped the leg to come out with her hands. It was difficult and many people would have never done it. My mother did.
If you're asking yourself why did they wait until the last minute, well, they had no other choice. The toys were sold in the city shops, two weeks before Christmas. And most of the time were already sold before seeing the shelf. Relatives, friends, friends of friends paid large amounts of money for specific toys. People like my mother, who didn't know any shop assistant, had to go from a shop to another,  and pray God to find some toys, any toys for that matter.

One year, when I was maybe two years old, my mother asked me what I would I like Santa to bring me. I don't know where I have seen a red telephone in my life, but that was what I wanted. I am referring to the old phones like this one.


And Santa brought me that exact phone, a toy, of course. I couldn't believe my eyes. It was a miracle. A dream come true.
How did he know mother? Where did he find it?” I was in tears from happiness and I drove my mother crazy for months and months with it. I made it rang over and over and over again. Poor mother. Until it got broken and stopped ringing. I was devastated. I am sure my mother was relieved. Finally, some peace.

The next year my mother asked again what do I want and I said a red telephone. I was crazy about it. And Santa brought me the red phone again. Unbelievable!

And the year my older siblings who were living away brought oranges to my mother was absolutely magic. The youngest of us have never seen them before and had no idea of what they were. I am not sure my mother knew either. And when she peeled one of the colourful fruits, the house filled with the most wonderful smell in the whole universe.

Since then, every time I smell a peeled orange my mind goes back to that Christmas evening during one of the worst communist regimes that ever existed in Europe. I cannot stop crying when I think how difficult my parents' life has been. The dictators were swimming in countless delicatessen and my parents, who worked night and day, had to stay in a queue for hours to buy a toy or a chocolate to their children. Luckily, we were farmers, we had everything we needed and even more, except for toys and chocolate.

Nowadays, Christmas doesn't make me feel the same. I prefer to celebrate it alone and go back into my sweetest and priceless memories when I was with my family until I will make my own.

This is a small fragment of the autobiography that will soon become public.

I want to express my profound gratitude to those who kept encouraging me to write, despite my poor English skills. You have saved a lost soul.
May the Gods you believe in, bless you and your dearest ones forever. 

If you want to read my book, please purchase it from here. And if you feel particularly good this Christmas, please spend some minutes to leave a review on the book's page. I know it's a lot to ask, but I can't express in words how much would mean to me. 

I am absolutely exhausted, I slept 4 hours in 3 days.

I wish you all a Happy Christmas with loads of oranges and chocolates.  

Ps. If you're having trouble downloading the eBook on iOS just place your order via Safari rather than the Amazon app. A friend of mine had encountered this. 


If you appreciated, don't hesitate to like, share, comment, or join me on Facebook.


Thank you for your visit. See you soon, amazing human being.


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