Pia’s grandmother had lived in Kelepetria all her life and had never had the slightest wish to even try living somewhere else. Indeed, it had never occurred to her. She had been born there in the village, been to school there – what little schooling she had – and had married there. She was of healthy mountain stock, knew all the plant remedies, all the little paths through the valleys, and everybody for miles in each direction. She was quiet, simple, undemanding, honest. Her numerous children were all born at home and she was bemused by Pia’s wish to go to the maternity hospital for the delivery. She was, however, one of the first there when Nico was born, and one of the first Pia turned to, five years later, when Stella strode in to their lives.
Extract from “The Man with Green Fingers”, a novel set in Cyprus:-
That night the house was strangely silent. John lay on his back in the bed he normally shared with Pia and stared at the ceiling. How strange life is! he mused. Turning his head to one side he could see the pale cradle, outlined against the window. Tomorrow a little baby will lie in there, he thought. My son. I have a son. He fell asleep eventually well after midnight and dreamt about Pia and the baby, comfortable dreams that woke him once, and he smiled quietly in to the darkness. But when he fell asleep again he dreamt of Stella ..… Stella running at the cradle ..… the cradle was lost in Paphos …… Stella had got blood on her legs, mountains, the woods full of bluebells, a miniature tree grown in half a grapefruit shell, and orchids in the shadows. Stella stood by the orchids and waved to him, a small sneaky wave that said “here I am dear”, and somewhere in the background a baby was crying.