A month or so after starting school, Landor proudly brought home some brightly coloured paintings of his family—smiling red and blue stick figures of his father and mother, his sister and himself. He had written their names under each figure … Mummy, Daddy, Landor, Anna.
‘Look at my paintings, Daddy,’ Landor said excitedly. ‘I painted pictures of us at school. I wrote our names too. I can write now.’
‘Later, son,’ Spyridon replied as he put on his coat. ‘I’m going out to visit your grandfather now. Leave them on the kitchen bench for me and I’ll look later.’
Landor left the paintings on the bench, and eagerly watched the clock, waiting for his father to come home. Spyridon returned that evening at 8.30 p.m., as Landor was getting ready for bed. Landor heard him come in, and hurried to put his pyjamas on. Barefooted, he ran to the kitchen, wanting to remind his father to look at his paintings. His father was standing by the bench, with bread, cheese and ham from the fridge, preparing to make a sandwich. Spyridon wasn’t aware of his young son in the doorway behind him.
As Landor watched, he saw his father reach for the paintings on the corner of the bench. He waited, in silent anticipation, for his father’s reaction. Instead of holding them up to look at them, Spyridon screwed them into a ball and tossed them into the corner of the room, aiming for the rubbish bin. It was then that he saw his son standing in the doorway. In the time it took Landor to blink, his father was in front of him, and Landor felt a stinging slap over his right ear.