A man on his land, surrounded by cane.

We visited some friends of friends in a far-off place called Pirris. One gets there via a treacherous mountain road falling off into the raging river below. By crossing a precarious bridge that should be condemned but won’t be till it breaks, or the river takes it away. By climbing, on foot, for an hour to reach a magical place untouched by modern convenience, like electricity.

The home we finally reach is large, larger than most I’ve seen. Its graciousness comes from being tended so carefully, so tenderly by the daughters of this man, Don Carmen. Undistracted by Facebook or television, their energies are translated into marvellous gardens and charmingly crafted ornament.

Untitled #20 (the farm series) web

I don’t know if we were expected or arrived unannounced. I believe it wouldn’t have mattered either way. Don Carmen, when he met me, understood I didn’t speak Spanish and so simply smiled and raised his arms to give me an embrace. It was understood I was welcome

.