Orthodox Byzantine Chants
Holy Mount Athos
It’s 10 pm and I am in the Peramata area. A girl stops me and tells me:
– Omonia Square, please!
– We’re going! I told her, but there was something in her voice I did not like.
The girl sat beside me. Right after we left, she asked me:
– May I smoke?
– You may.
She took a cigarette from her pack and while trying to find her lighter, the cigarette fell down. I switched on the light so that she could see. Before switching it off, my gaze fell on her hands. They were full of stings!
I can’t tell you what I felt in those moments. How painfully sorry I was for that girl!Oh Lord! How I wished I could help her! God, please put in my mouth Your Words, to tell her!
– I need someone to talk to, I told her.
– And you found me? she asked me surprised.
– Yes, I want to talk to you.
In the meantime I stopped the car. We started talking about the difficulties I encounter due to my job. And little by little I steered the talk around her own life. I won’t tell you what we discussed, how big and serious was her problem, for not tiring you, but I am telling you what she promised me: she gave me her word that she would start the rehab. And to be honest, I didn’t believe her.
We arrived in Omonia. When she took out the money to pay, I did not accept it. I just told her:
– I won’t take it for I want you to remember what you promised me.
– Be sure I won’t forget youy, she said and got down.
It passed about a year from that day and I forgot that encounter. One afternoon, I was in Aharnon, heading for Perama. I took a lady in the taxi as a passanger. We discussed about many various topics. At a certain moment I saw two kids waving to make me stop. I stopped.
– We’re going to Perama. Are you taking us?
– Come, kids! That’s right where we go.
The boy sat beside me. Looking at him, I realized he was taking drugs.
– May I ask you something? I told him.
Before he answered – you may, he said straightly:
– Yes, I was taking drugs!
– And you’re not taking anymore?
– No, I started the rehab together with my girlfriend.
– Bravo, kids, congrats! Kids, you reminded me of a girl from Perama. I took her in my taxi about a year ago and after a long talk, she promised me she would start the rehab. May she be in good health, that sweet, afflicted girl, anywhere she would be!
Suddenly I heard the girl from the back sobbing heavily.
– What’s the matter, girl? Can I do anything for you?
– No, she answered among sobs. But I am the one you were talking about…I kept my promise.
– Is it you?
– Yes, it’s me!
I got down from the taxi and after she got down too, we hugged one another and were both crying.
– Thank you, thank you, my darling dear! I kept on telling her. To be true, I was not expecting you to keep your promise.
– You gave my such strength that it was impossible to fail doing that. I thank you for taking out some of your time for me, when I got in your taxi. I found a confessor as you told me and I go to the church.
This was the most beautiful day from my life as a taxi driver