Sunday, June 06, 2010

Lettre 32: Gago and the watch

Yeghegnadzor, Saturday, June-05-10 When I first met Gago a few years back, he was in the middle of the street, directing traffic in downtown Yeghegnadzor. When Gago tried to tell me where to walk, I did not quite understand until some passers-by quietly explained that Gago was just a friendly soul who wandered the downtown area and meant no harm to anyone. I have since always enjoyed seeing him clown around, smiling and laughing with everybody. It is about a year ago that Gago approached me to say he needed a waterproof watch so that he could bathe with it on. I told him I would look for one and, if I found one, I would bring it to him. Every time I ran into Gago in downtown Yeghegnadzor, he reminded me about the watch, and when I returned to Armenia last March, he had not forgotten. When he saw me, he said: Bari Kaloust, im zhamatsouytsu our e? (Welcome back. Where is my watch?) I had brought an old watch from Ottawa and gave it to him. His eyes lit up. He quickly examined it and said with such sadness in his eyes: This is not water-proof… the water-proof ones have a tightening mechanism on the back. This simple man knew what he was talking about. Indeed, as I later learned, water-proof watches have grooves on the circle of the watch’s back cover which watchmakers use to unscrew the back and work on the watch when necessary. I apologized to Gago; I was sorry I did not have such a watch, and I had not considered it a priority to get a watch that he could bathe with. I suggested that all he had to do was take his watch off when he had a shower. He looked so sad and his beautiful smile faded from his face. The next time I saw him, I told him that I would write a letter from Armenia about him, and perhaps some generous person with a waterproof watch would donate it and I could bring it next time I came. Now Gago can’t wait for me to leave and come back . Every time I see him downtown he asks, are you not gone yet? So if anyone has such a watch to donate, please think about making “Gizh Gago” happy in Yeghegnadzor!

Antoine S. Terjanian
Went there to move mountains and keep hope lit

p.s. A generous Frenchman, has read this letter in English, and is sending a waterproof watch for Gago. Thank you.

p.p.s. If you think Armenians are happy, watch this skit in the Yerevan fruit & Veg market: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xll8_FhATZs&feature=player_embedded/

p.p.p.s. Remember the four candles: Peace, Faith, Love and Hope If the first three candles are extinguished, make sure you keep the fourth lit.