My grandma taught me how to sew. Every woman should know how to sew, cook, and clean, that's what she used to tell us at the sewing gathering. I used to go on vacation to my grandma's and she would take me to these gatherings. I thought it was a waste of time because all I wanted to do was play non-stop. Today, leaning over the embroidery, with my grandma on my mind, I try to decipher the pattern. And I go back in time and think of her, of her stories and advice, of her lessons about life and tradition, of her care for family and community.

(Translated by Beatrice-Ioana Huruială / University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year II / Corrected by Silvia Petrescu, coordinator of the translations)

Real Fiction is a collective project started in 2013 by Florin Piersic Jr. The concept of Real Fiction continued to exist as a Facebook group, after a volume of stories was published at Humanitas Publishing House. (In April 2023, the group has 11,000 members.) The authors write ultra-short stories, with the texts limited to 500 characters (in Romanian, so the length of the English translation might be a little different) - a flash-fiction exercise on a topic that changes every few days. The group's coordinators are Florin Piersic Jr., Gabriel Molnar, Răzvan Penescu, Luchian Abel, and Vlad Mușat. (Drawing by Adrian T. Roman)

Versiunea în română a acestui text se poate citi aici, în rubrica Ficțiuni Reale.

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