“Can you see them?”
They descend in random order, staining the green of the meadow with red. They look like poppies. The monks prayed on the prairie, somewhere over the hill that borders the horizon, and are now returning to the monastery for lunch.
“Hello! Are you coming back for lunch? You are beautiful!”. They nod and smile in turn. “My name is Andrea and I come from Italy!”. I stare at each one of them, giving out handshakes and patting their shoulder.
“I saw you coming down the hill. You were awesome! I couldn’t help but come and greet you!”
I am so happy I cheer them all. They trust instantly. They gather around me, looking at me with kindness. Older people ask me a few questions in English. I photograph them as we speak and it doesn’t seem to bother them.
There is a child monk, about 4 years old, who studies me carefully. He must miss something, because he looks at me up and down, but he does not seem convinced. He is in the arms of a monk in his 30s, who holds him with the fatherly tenderness.
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