They turn from village to village, even for 1 resident - 25 January, 2018
"Lekanidis came to the village" - In Sfakia they still remember their "pedlar" - An appointment made for decades in the villages.
Those who grew up in a village or went to their grandparents' home for the summers, will remember those eager, usually cheerful people, with their cars and their megaphones, turning them from place to place to sell their goods.
With small or big trucks, but certainly dented, they made an impressive entrance into the village, often with loud music, inviting all the people to "long" to buy all the goodies: tomatoes, potatoes, beans, cheeses, fish, for their home.
At first, the inhabitants were living quietly in the village, when they suddenly, expecting the merchant to come, ran out of their homes, welcomed him as they would to a loved relative, and quickly looked into the van to see what good he was holding today, their passionate "friend".
The whole delivery was transformed into a celebration when, in addition to the shopping, the residents had the opportunity to learn the news of the day, to confirm or to deny rumours and gossip, to finally agree on "health above all", before the trader left for the next village, renewing the "appointment" for next week.
This appointment with the merchant was fixed and unambiguous: If he was delayed, there was immediate concern about whether he "suffered from anything" or the suspicion that "he will not come today." And on the other hand, when a resident did not give presence to the van or the car, there were whispered hypotheses about whether he "got sick" or at worst it meant spreading a bad gossip to their fellow villagers.
The itinerant grocers of today
All these "rites" continue in some villages even today, where merchants travel around from region to region and serve mainly elderly people who can not otherwise obtain products, but also younger ones who have become unaccustomed to the "market situation" of a village, which in addition to a cafe and a small grocery store does not have other shops.
Lefteris, from the age of 13, remembers himself in the front seat next to his co-driver, returning with his father to villages throughout the prefecture of Chania, with the truck full of vegetables of the season.
Today, he follows into the footsteps of his father, who for about 40 years, initially as a fisherman and then as a vegetable trader, brought it to villages even to serve a single resident.
33-year-old Lefteris today remembers the route to the village of Koumouli in Rodopos where he was going for a 86-year-old who could not even come out of her house to shop.
"We went for this one, and many times this has been done. For years, our residents have been waiting for us, trusting us, leaving their homes to shop."
Even on Christmas and New Year's Day, tells Lefteris, the trip to the villages did not change and he went to the established appointment of the week because it does not change.
"People are waiting for us and if we are going to go, people are waiting for it, and this year I went out for Christmas and New Year, and I serve people I love so many years, I grew up with them, friends are waiting," says Lefteris. This is not a simple profession but much more.
But also as a job, it's something he likes because, as he says, "You know people, you change the environment, you are not locked in an office, I can not do that".
In Sfakia they still remember Lekanidis
Today, the inhabitants of Sfakia still remember and talk about "Lekanidis", the merchant who arrived in Sfakia from Alikampos, Apokoronas.
In the 1960s, Lekanidis made the ride by donkey, bringing various goods and accepting orders from the residents for things that were not included in his basket but could be found on his way.
Entering the village of Sfakia the villagers shouted "Lekanidis came". Today, elderly people remember that when he died, many Sfakians went, when they could, into the village of Lekanidis to bid farewell to him and to attend the funeral of their own merchant.
And in this case, Leonidis' son continues the tradition and exercises the same profession, turning to the villages in a new and bigger van to sell his products.
It seems that this particular profession, although it has experienced a crisis, will hardly stop because it is well-rooted in the "tradition of the villages" and fortunately still passes from generation to generation.
From: http://flashnews.gr/post/340627/xania-g ... toiko-fwto