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Short Stories School Years 8 to 10 Highly Commended Adelaia Corr Agnew with ‘The Mediterranean’

Photo by Johnny Bugeja.

As the warm gentle sun seeped through the silverly leaves and the old, gnarled trunks of the olive trees I felt an instant calmness. My lungs revived with the salty sea breeze air, and my mind was silent. I walked down through the old town looking at the laundry, drying on the windows swaying rhythmically with the wind and the distant cheerful chatter from the locals, everything felt blissful.

I sat down and looked at the charming, tiled table it was chipped, and the colour was fading but it held memories of smiling couples, families and friends were the conversations lasted for ever, your face hurt from smiling and the food was fresh and exiting and nestled well. The stone wall with the green ivy crawling upwards to the clear cornflower sky. The air was emersed with the scent of orange blossom its fragrance was like a delicate dance of citrus and floral notes with a hint of sweetness.

I carried walking downwards where the bustling streets lined with colourful stalls, overflowing with fresh produce, aromatic spices, and handmade crafts. The old men at the bar smoking and having loudly debates and laughter’s. The children running around freely with their vibrant pattern sundresses and short and t shirts with their floppy sandals.

The old town is rich in history. Their cobblestones streets and winding alleys, simple buildings with colourful shutters and cafes older than time itself. The pigeons on standby for a crumb of bread given by the old ladies on the bench.

And then there are the most magnificent coasts with their crystal-clear turquoise waters and golden sandy beaches with rock polls and ecosystems of their own. Fisherman catching the daily fish fresh for the market. Families having picnics and building sandcastles. And the soothing melody of the rolling waves crashing on the shore like if tranquillity were a music that would be it and the occasional seagulls call soaring through the air.

The Mediterranean felt like the world all humans were meant to live in. It is filled with kind, generous, and warm-hearted people. The only thing children worried about was not being allowed to swim and play with their friends. The atmosphere had the sense of liveliness but peacefulness at the same time. It was like the Mediterranean was in its own planet. The locals do not worry about how much they make, politics, the economy. They stayed in the present moment enjoying life as they should and the only ones realising that we only have one chance in this world and every day is to enjoy and feel fulfilled.

“Can you fax these, and you have to stay overtime this needs to be finished by tomorrow.”

Adjudicators Comments:
‘How refreshing to see an interest in the world outside as the focus for a young writer. There is an assured tone to the whole piece, with an eye for detail and the quotidian that allows the reader to walk alongside the narrator through a warm sunny day by the sea. The last line takes a big swing in its attempt at social commentary, and how we may often feel when we are locked indoors or away from our home, dreaming of a Mediterranean summer day.’

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