While the prudent stand and ponder, the fool has already crossed the river.

Raffi, “The Fool”

In 1880, Raffi (Hakob Melik Hakobian) wrote “Khent” (The Fool). The titular character is exasperated with the way the majority of his fellow Armenians act and think and thus acts and thinks in a way that many regard as foolish…

After sitting at a crowded cafe, spontaneously seeing some wonderful people who moved to Armenia long before me, I decided it was appropriate to celebrate the people who had the foresight to do what some (read: most) consider “foolish.”

To the fools who came to Armenia in the 40’s. The place may not have been what you were expecting, but you uprooted your entire life and started anew based on your love for your country.

To the fools who moved to Armenia right after 1991. Not only did you create a path for many to follow now, but you chose to live in a world without avocados for many years.

To the fools who voluntarily stayed after 1991. Your offspring is amazing and because of you, they believe in the future and are establishing a foundation to build on.

To the fools who came to build and never uttered the dreaded words “help,” “third-world,” or “charity.” You have come to terms with the fact that you do not deserve a ticker-tape parade or applause and are the ones who are starting a new, sustainable dynamic.

To the two fools from California who went to Armenia to start a life here. He with a love for i-anything and she with a love for anything witty and clever, you have become inspiration for countless others and continue to be so through your legacy.

To the fools who believe, really believe, in the intense awesomeness that is possible in this country. Understand that you are the reason that intense awesomeness is/will be coming to fruition.

And to the fools sitting far away, reading this at their computers, not giving into the naysayers bombarding them with their pedestrian platitudes but who are still vacillating about whether to join their fellow fools. Know that though you will not get a pat on the back, you can now find avocados, that many have come before you and that crossing the river isn’t so bad.