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May 2002

War Signed Paintings

In one of our previous issues Welcome magazine introduced the name of the popular Moldovan artist Afanasie Oprea. In commemoration of all those who died in the Second World War we would like to continue our tour of his works in particular of those dedicated to the sad events.

Afanasie Oprea did not take part in the war himself. He was only seven years old when the Nazi invaded the territory of Moldova. His elder brother and father left home to defend their country. Oprea’s mother and eight other children stayed in Delacau village on the bank of the Dniester River, near Grigoriopol, Serpeni. Serpeni was the base for the Iasi-Chisinau Operation. As a boy Afanasie survived the events of 1941 when our forces retreated under the pressure of the Nazi troops. The most formidable years of military occupation were years of Oprea’s childhood. The Germans, Romanians, and Italians - they have all passed through Delacau village leaving raided households and people with nothing to feed on.


Let There Always Be Circus

When, on circus day, you enter the circular building where the Chisinau Circus performs its entertainments, you find yourself in the world of humor and joy. In the lobby you are immediately surrounded by an amusing crowd of bizarrely dressed characters in multicolored costumes, comical hats, boots of enormous sizes, singing, hopping around, walking about on stilts, juggling and doing all kinds of conjuring tricks. You just cannot help being cheered up. Thus conditioned, you, when the time of the main show draws near, proceed from the lobby to the main hall, find your seat in one of the tiers, sit down and await with eager anticipation the appearance of the Master of Ceremonies (MC) in the ring who will announce the beginning of the performance. The band begins to play, the eyes of the spectators who are mostly children of all ages, are fixed on the arena. All the eyes are sparkling with excitement. Here he comes – the MC appears with all the lights trained on him. The show begins.


Alcohol Abuse Goes On

Man has the strength to bear many things, but from time to time he falls subject to stress. Different people find different ways of scrambling out of similar situations and of obtaining their influx of positive emotions. Some spend time in the country, in the fresh air while others drink and do drugs. Tastes are not disputed. Often meager tastes transform into bad habits, which lead to a shorter and a more sickly life.

For a while people believed that alcoholism was only characteristic of the lower class and dominated where poverty ruled. But now it is quite obvious that drinking is widespread as much among the poor as among the affluent. The difference is that the alcohol problems of the rich are revealed only when they end up in psychiatric clinics with nervous breakdowns and other “side effects”.


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