St. Marina day / by mirena

A hot day in New York and a big holiday in Bulgaria, St Marina's day is my grandfather's and my name day. In the Orthodox Christian tradition and in the old days in Bulgaria, the name day was considered a personal holiday bigger than the actual birthday of the person. Wikipedia says that Name days in Bulgaria are important and widely celebrated. By an ancient Bulgarian tradition, everybody is welcome on name days; there is no need to invite guests.

My grandfather was a successful businessman and a self-taught painter. After 1947 his fortune was nationalized and he was declared an enemy of the state. I always remember him glued to the BBC and Voice of America. I grew up in my grandparents' house and remember that a mustached person from the Party also always lived there. My grandfather drew and painted well into his 80's and had a great sense of humor, sang beautifully and had a very laid back attitude for just about everything. An anecdote says that one of his aunts warned him that his apprentices are stealing... and he said:" There is something for me and something for them."

my grandfather, Marin Rikev, drawing My grandfather loved to draw funny scenes and fun portraits on whatever paper was available..