Thursday, February 18, 2016

#TBT: I get a peaceful easy feeling, and I know you won't let me down

My dad was always big on photographing the family - my parents have dozens of photo albums at their house, chronicling their (and our) entire lives, from the time they themselves were children.  One of the Thanksgiving traditions that my brothers and I have is to go through old albums and remember all of the wonderful and interesting experiences we were fortunate enough to have growing up.

And as the first-born, I had a dedicated baby album, complete with the pink and blue cover that said "Baby."  

But the album is old and and the pictures are getting brittle and faded.  So a few years ago, as a gift to my parents, I took the album, scanned all the pictures, and created a photo book that exactly duplicated the pictures and the layout of the original. 

This picture above is from that album.  That's me, probably around 6 months old, give or take. We're at Kyrenia Harbor in Cyprus, where I was born (Cyprus, I mean - I wasn't born in Kyrenia Harbor). The shirtless dude in the picture was named Costakis. He worked at the harbor, maybe as a fisherman or something. I don't know how my parents knew him - maybe my nanny Christina (the one who had me baptized in the Greek Orthodox church - it never hurts to cover your bases) knew him. And what am I doing there with him? Is he babysitting me?

In any event, this is one of my favorite pictures.  There's a lovely peacefulness about it - the scene feels carefree and full of joy.  Costakis seems to be such a gentle, sweet guy with a way with babies. I feel comfortable with him. It's a beautiful sunny day by the water. Life is good.

Plus I love the relaxed (and very dated) casualness towards baby safety - that rickety baby seat perched on a tiny, rickety table -- near water, no less! -- would not fly in the helicopter parenting world we live in, with hyper-emphasis on how car seats must be constructed and how and where they may sit (not on a tiny table, that's for damned sure).  And there's a full ashtray on the table next to me. If this were a recent picture posted on Facebook or similar, the hysterical mamas with nothing to do but lecture other people on their shortcomings would be commenting furiously about how my parents or caregivers should be reported to CPS because I'm clearly in danger.  

But I'm obviously fine. I'm happy. I am surrounded by people who love and care for me. I'm safe.

I have no idea where Costakis is now. But I would love to be able to send him this photo and let him know how much I love it.

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