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Years ago there was a popular song by U2 with an unforgettable video for those of us old enough to remember. The song, “Where the Streets Have No Name” came out in August of 1987, my third consecutive summer in Vassara. I swore Bono must have somehow visited Vassara to have created such a song, especially with lyrics that felt custom-made to the angst we feel in that desperate desire to GET THERE! Hard to describe to people who haven’t been, but for the second generation of immigrants like me, who once upon a time returned on a regular basis with parents and grandparents as a kid, the need to get back there needs no explanation.  It’s almost painful to be anywhere else on August 23rd, when you’re certain all your friends and family are partying it up half way across the world in town square until dawn.  Vassara can seem as unreal as a fairytale when we’re not there, but as real as a living dream when we are.  There’s only a small percentage of people who can relate to the calling of a village, but I believe that anyone who has left a place they love will always yearn for it somewhere in their nostalgic heart.  On my last visit to Vassara, I walked the nameless streets on a quiet July afternoon with a video camera, capturing nothing and yet everything. The village was quiet in its afternoon mesimeri, or siesta time. The only person I ran into was an old man who probably thought I was crazy to walk the streets midday in the blaring heat.  The air was still.  No cars. No goats. No children running. Vassara was perfectly, wonderfully, quiet. All I heard was the sounds of my own footsteps walking the cobblestone streets. But in that serenity, a thousand voices of the past seemed to scream out of every corner the rich history of a place that my ancestors inhabited long ago, in a place what enchantingly lives on……where the streets have no name.

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