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The Greek Owl and the Pope’s Chef

A few days ago, I was walking inside Central Park in Manhattan. I saw some people gathered and talking to each other, saying: “Flaco, the famed owl is there…”. I asked “Where is it?” They replied in a unified voice like an orchestra “Look there, it stands on the tree branches…”.

To be honest, I heard some sounding from branches, but still, I couldn’t see it. I know the story, the owl was freed from its cage, and enjoys its liberty for about 80 days (as of April 23). Happily, at the end, I managed and I saw it…  

Wow, wow. For heaven’s sake! What a glorious bird! It gave me the impression that was eating alone something, as I saw it moving its head towards its talons two or three times. I asked again, this time rhetorically, “Is the owl Greek?”, and one man with accent replied back “Yes, it must be! It is the symbol of wisdom for the Greeks!” Hmmm.

The New Yorkers along with a few tourists, that quickly sensed that something important is happening, were thrilled about the bird. I was so thrilled too. This owl, is not exactly Greek, but Eurasian. At the end of course, we can say, that, it was seen by the eyes of a Greek living in New York City (NYC).

I had to come out from Central Park, continued walking, as I was heading to the corner of 92nd Street & 3th Avenue. There, in a restaurant, I had to visit the mastermind George Goutakolis and, the famed chef and new friend of mine, with the name, Chef Salvo (his full name, by the way, is: Salvo Lo Castro).

An eccentric but extremely talented man, and, as I find out, he was for years one of the main chefs of Pope John Paul II. Wow, wow again. For heaven’s sake! “A Pope is close to God, no?” I remember that I told him.

He treasured my comment.

And myself, I was so thrilled for second time in the same day. As soon as I speak more to Chef Salvo Lo Castro, he tells me about the Pope “At night the Pope, always or almost always, ate alone and ate like a normal person…”. 

I just wanted to share this strange but so semantic connection (and this “wise connection” to circle the world and its entire history, and this piece of news to travel from NYC to Sydney, and from Sydney to ancient Jerusalem, ancient Athens and ancient Rome―the places that The Individual Genius with its Judeo-Christian Principles” was born): Flaco was eating alone in that morning, and later on, I found out, that even the Pope of Rome was eating alone at night. 

And, at this point, during the process of developing this text, the Operations Manager, George Goutakolis, in a message quoted God and His words of faith and wisdom: God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, “the courage to change the things I can,” and the wisdom to know the difference. “The courage to change the things I can?” Hmmm. Such wisdom, for the whole world and not only for Hellenism, it can be symbolised only by an Owl.   

Only in NYC, your day can go from “Flaco the owl…” to, “Salvo the human…”, or, from “the Greek Owl…” to, “the Pope’s Chef…” The magnificent owl and the brilliant human, are the two latest New Yorkers.

Both are famed and they enjoy the world attention. In a way, our squad of geniuses was incomplete without both of them. Not any more! A Day or an Eternity Made in NYC? And, is this small article about them, destined to be read around the world? We hope so… 

Source: https://greekcitytimes.com/2023/05/08/the-greek-owl-and-the-popes-chef/?amp