Chapter 9. The Return Home

Two days after the study day, I decided to return home, and therefore I travelled by buses until the northern border of the Enemy’s country, in order to cross the border to my country. The last bus stopped right next to the border pass that allowed passage from the Enemy’s country to the security zone in the south of my country, that as I mentioned before, the Enemy had under its control. In fact, citizens of my country who inhabit the security zone make constant use of this border pass, in order to work in the sovereign area of the Enemy’s country.

The border guards did not detain me for long, after they understood I was the citizen of the country in the other side of the border, but they advised me to get out of the zone they possessed as soon as possible. I took one organised ride that took me outside the security zone, and then I found another car that was about to go in the direction of my village and took it. After I got out of car, I walked for a short while by foot until I reached the outskirts of my village, during the late afternoon.

The village seemed more deserted, and the amount of people who hung around its streets was smaller than usual to that hour. When I came near my house I understood why: half of my village gathered by my house in what looked like a party that was conducted for my return. A few seconds later, some people noticed me and their calls (“Look over there, here he comes!”) spread the news among the entire crowd. Most of them turned their look toward the street in which I walked and some of them even advanced toward me.

So I found myself surrounded by many blessings, questions and shoulder taps, but aside from the basic reactions (“Thank you.”, “Excellent.” and many smiles) I focused on getting a way through the crowd to reach my family. After I got there at the end and stood in front of both my parents, I told them: “I’m back.”

After two minutes of blessings, hugs, calls and remarks like “How we missed you.” coming from the parents and the more distant family, that stood by them, my father got to the point:

“So, tell us how it’s been!”

The crowd slowly silenced and waited in anticipation to my answer and the next answers that would come.

“How what has been exactly?” I answered.

“Oh, you know…” my mother asked, “How was the interview?”

“Oh! I have a videotape with the interview right here. Didn’t you see it?”

“Of course! And to be honest, we asked someone to tape it for us, too.”

“So you know how it’s been.”

“Well. So, how was the visit to the Enemy’s country?”

“Oh, the Enemy’s country — that’s an entirely different story. Yes. I have something very important to tell you about the Enemy country. In fact…”

“So get on with it and tell it already.”, one of my cousins cried.

“All right, I’ll get to the point: I came.”


“I saw.”


I understood, after a moment, that they expect to say another thing.

“That’s it.” I said.

“And isn’t there something else you would like to tell about it?”

“No, because I assume you have already seen the speech I gave during that seminar in the university.”

And so the reception returned to its course, as I frequently answer people’s questions regarding the trip I took abroad. “Why did you visit the Enemy’s country at all?”, I was asked after a short while and I answered:

“Well, the main reason was that I wanted material for my future book. However, I integrated into it the collection of valuable intelligence information about the Enemy, in a manner that is not considered as illegal by the authorities. Although I managed to get a lot of information without many disturbances, the results I came up with are not very satisfactory.

As I made it clear to myself, most of what I know now, was already known to us, or we assumed it was like that in the first place. In fact, had I writer a report on the information I know about the Enemy, then 48 out of 51 pages, would have already been known to us before I took the trip.”

“And what about the three remaining pages?”

“Oh, they contain a summary, conclusions and a bibliography.”

Some time later, when I took part in a conversation with my mother, my sister, a friend of mine, from the village and two neighbours, my mother burst and said:

“Oh! I forgot to tell you until now, but I talked with our truck driver, and he said he will probably be able to hire you as his employee.”

“Very good.” I told her, “But, to be honest, I think of starting my own business. The money I got for the interview in foreign currency is considered a fortune around here, and it will certainly suffice for starting to build the business.”

“In what did you consider to deal with?” My friend asked.

“Honestly, I didn’t really give it a lot of thought. I’m so talented, that I don’t have enough talent to determine which one of my talents I work at for a living.”