When I was at the early school age I used to spend a part of my summer holidays at my granny’s. Being a town girl made me very incompetent in the affairs of countryside. I couldn’t play with my peers, for I was totally unable to work on field or graze cows. I even seemed to be unable to learn ever to do that. At least the fellow villagers never let me even come close to the cow, pig or hen.
So I spent my days dreaming, learning the names and properties of plants by heart, preparing herbarium and trying to find some approach to the local children. My granny willing to help me to socialize took me one day to another oldlady, who had the grand-daughter of my age and even with the same name as mine – Natasha. We liked each other at once and settled immediately that we would play together as much as it was possible. Unlike me, she had a lot of duties everyday. She had to graze huge cows, help her mother with other poultry and livestock, clean their big house and so on. So I came at the time she was back from the pasture and we hided in their apple-orchard and invented some games. We gathered different plants and imagined they were medical ones, so we squeezed out the plants juices, mixed them with water, sand, and cured our dolls.
Then we took a woolen blanked and lay down under the shadow of a branchy apple-tree and looking at the sky started to tell stories. One by one.
I really cannot remember what were my stories, I used to think of myself as unable to invent or “lie” about reality. But when I look back at that time – I had millions of stories. I could definitively compete with Scheherazade in storytelling. We spent lots of days doing it non-stop for many hours till our grannies and parents called us to go to bed or eat. We switched on our imagination, we got scared, we fell in love, we visited overseas countries, we were pirats and ghosts, we were princesses and beggars.
I never ever tried to write any of these stories. They were living creatures that visited us under the apple-tree. I never ever met Natasha again in my life. I’ve heard she had become a teacher and married. We didn’t have any internet contact, because there were no Internet at that time :)
Well, maybe I succeed in finding her now?