The week in Cyprus was passing by fast, thats partly because the island has much to offer. Long beaches, idyllic villages and fun on the roads on the ocean highways or in the snow covered mountains. The other great discovery are the people of Cyprus themselves: inviting and sharing. At our last day it was feeling like visiting old friends, when we sat to have a sunday bbq with Hambis Tsangaris and his family in the garden of his Printmaking Museum.
Some days before, when I sat on a cliff watching over the ocean, I started to write the following anecdote.
The two pirates.
Not so long ago, in far away waters there were two famous, rivalling pirates who have been gathering wealth and fame beyond imagination. Even other fierce pirates and of course the merchants were terrified to meet them on high seas as they have been known to be very skilful with their sails, cannons and swords. One day, when they realised that they have grown a bit old and all the gold in the world could not buy them neither happiness nor love or true friends, both decided to settle down on deserted islands.
Jackson the Ruthless was afraid of outsiders. He became paranoid, that someone would try to steal his riches or even worse kill him. He built a lots of barriers, thought of elaborate defence mechanisms and always had part of his remaining crew patrolling around his island. Only a few and wealthy people were allowed to visit him. But he banned and sent off those, who he did not like anymore for any given reason.
Johnson the Cunning was thinking quite the opposite. He dreamed of a place where everybody was welcomed and used his riches building houses, schools and of course a pirate´s tavern. He enjoyed the stories of other travellers so much, that he even gave prize money for a good story or entertaining show. The word spread and many visitors arrived, who soon stayed to hear more stories. The island became known for its storytellers and inspiration it had on the tired sailors. More of them decided to settle down and stay. Johnson welcomed them and told them, to find something useful to do, something that matters and contributes to the well of the community – then they could stay with him.
Jackson´s island soon became a dull place and some hundred years later they only found ruins full of traps and gold. Johnson´s island became well known for its diverse arts and culture – a place of opportunity and delight. Where the careers of many people would blossom spurred by its variety of thoughts and richness of hospitality.