by Rajaa Singh, Staff Reporter
On a hot summer day in Marrekech, an old man who wore worn out pants and dirty shoes walked to the market. He had only one pair of shoes that he wore all the time. He went everyday to sell vegetables in hopes to make enough money to cover the rent and food on his family’s table. Every day he picked the vegetables from his garden and wheeled five miles into town on a cart with a donkey. No matter what, he was known for his contagious smile. On this summer day, a man named, Hendrik Bekirch, sipped his coffee and browsed across the cafe, waiting to stumble upon a muse. Berkich noticed the old man at the market by the cafe giving some of his vegetables to a homeless woman and child. This selfless action caught Berkich’s eye and he watched the old man. Within seconds, he picked up his pencil and sketchbook and began to capture the moment.
Bekirch is a famous painter from Germany who travels every month to a different destination. This month he sits at a busy cafe in the busy market. Bekirch purposely chose a cafe somewhere near the busy marketplace to catch a candid moment. These paintings become murals in countries all over the world from Morocco, Italy, Germany to the U.S. These murals convey a deeper message behind them.
After Bekirch finished his piece, he walked over to the old man and had a little boy translate for him. After an hour of talking to the old man about his life and family, Bekirch was fascinated by the stories he was told. The old man described the tough obstacles he struggled within his life like poverty and a lack of education. An important quote that the old man said that stuck with Bekirch was to “not take things for granted and to be happy for what you have”. Bekirch learned that true happiness is not when you have all the money and luxury in the world but instead when you have close to nothing and still have that smile on your face like the old man at the market had.