I love to tell my children about the ancient professions. Especially about those that have survived the winds of time.
Here in town we can find only two shoemakers. They're the only ones who are left of the 80 we had when I was young.
Some other of those 80 shoemakers are still alive, but they have left their machinery in the past and now make keys and glue soles on shoes. They don't look like they're much happier.
I wondered if any cigarmakers were left.
My uncle used to smoke Padron cigars and he used to tell me with how much care they were made of Nicaraguan tobaccoleaves grown from Cuban seeds by women who knew exactly what they were doing. Some wehere so fast in roling the cigars that one could hardly see their hands.
He took me to one of those women, who had settled in our town because her boys had moved here to go to university.
She was nice and smiling and slowed down her movements so I could see how much skill was involved and how much knowledge of the qualities and characteristics of leaves.
When she had shown the way a wrapper is roled around a cigara few times, she gestured I should try it.
I did. It was far from easy, and she did far better than I did, ofcourse.
A good wrapper protects the cigar from too much humidity or dehydration, that's what she told me.
"And all cigars carry a bit of love of the maker."
Isn't that sweet?