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The wild cherry tree and the hornbeam sapling

There are so many things that amaze the traveler’s eye! Clear mountain springs, the deep green of the woods, the harmony all around us. And, when we think that nothing else could surprise us, we reach the wild cherry tree and the hornbeam sapling. Two trees whose destinies, although apparently different, intertwined in a harmony which inevitably brings two lovers to mind. As though risen from the same root, the two trees have been here for decades, as a testimony to a love story that defied time and hardships. Seated in their shade, it’s like we can almost hear them whispering words of love to each other and reminiscing memories of the years they grew up next to one another, when they shed their leaves together, when they rejoiced at the spring green and sheltered together the birdsong. They will always be here, united, like a witness to the passing of time for us, as a symbol of the harmony that we have to preserve, and an encouragement to seek love, no matter how different we are!

The wild cherry tree and the hornbeam sapling do not, however, symbolize love, but the life that the Slovaks from Șinteu led, one in harmony with nature. The large distance between households, the long roads crossed by the locals to ensure their necessities and the somewhat isolated life determined the Slovaks here to find themselves in nature, keeping a strong link with their natural environment. Nature was like their second home. A place that provided some of the resources of life (game meat, wood for construction or fire), a shelter during troubled times, the forest remains for people a symbol of a terrestrial paradise, where one can escape to find oneself.

Nature inspired people to create, decorate their homes, tools, household items, with floral motifs; to write stories, songs, and poeems, which have the communion between humans and nature as their theme. There are numerous such songs that circulate orally even now within the Slovak community in Șinteu. We reproduce here one of them:

Vyrástla lipka, vyrástla borovička

[:The linden blossomed, the juniper blossomed,
The rose blossomed, :]
[:If you don’t want me, nor do you take a fancy to me, Tell me right away:]

[:If you don’t want me, nor do you take a fancy to me, Nor do you love me:]

[:At night I don’t sleep, I think about you You’re after other girls:]

[:Neither do I want you, nor do I take a fancy to you Nor do I like you:]

[:Because you’re mean, you dance till the morning That’s why I don’t like you. :]

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