Little Life Stories

15. The Customs Incident

In order to tell you about my return trip, I’d like to tell you a bit about the naive painting in Uzdin. This is why I had stopped by the Ionașcu family. I entered a house full of paintings, diplomas, beautiful words left by past visitors in a ledger that you notice as soon as you enter the house. Everywhere I went in Uzdin, there was elderflower juice on the table. And a minimum of 2 types of sparkling water. Don’t refuse, okay? Sofia Ionașcu also boiled some corn, the kind I haven’t eaten since childhood, yellow and a hard and finally not sweet. I felt bad about chewing corn while the Ionașcus offered me, on another tray, a much more sensitive and fragile one, the story of their life. I realized that much of the speech had been prepared beforehand.

I wasn’t the first to sit in that same chair or armchair and ask them pretty much the same questions. Sofia, a short agile woman with a beautiful smile and a very endearing voice. He, a big well-built impressive man, dictated the course of the story. I very much wanted to catch him opening his heart on a porcelain or metal tray, his choice. Sofia and Todor Ionașcu. I had my eye on at least four paintings. And on all the corn on the plate.

Photo credit: Ionuț Suciu

English translation: Cristina Chira