With love for homeland: 12th-grade students hike towards Spitakavor Monastery

It’s usually hard to wake up at 6 am. However, when you are going to have an unforgettable journey, you easily open your eyes 5 minutes to 6 am without the alarm clock. You drink a cup of tea, take your heavy backpack that contains everything you’ll need when hiking, and go out to meet the blooming nature.

Ayb School buses stopped at Vernashen village of Vayots Dzor province. We started hiking towards Spitakavor Monastery, where famed Armenian commander Garegin Nzhdeh was buried. The weather was wonderful and we were all excited and happy to continue our way. However, after 25 minutes of walking, the monastery was still out of sight. The road seemed endless.

Nevertheless, everything around was magical – the view of the snowdrops, the sounds of nature, and even the sandwich with cheese you brought with you from home had never tasted so unbelievably good. During such moments, you realize that everything around you is harmonic and perfect.

After stopping for a while, we continued our way with renewed energy, crossed some small rivers, ascended and descended hills to finally hear the sacred sound of the bells that fill you with faith and hope. This sound made us keep silent for a moment and understand that all hard journeys become easy with friends, teachers, and, of course, with a clear mind and determination.

In Spitakavor, we met a group of mountaineers, who joined us to dance Karno Kochari and Ishkhanats Par. Although the music stopped playing due to poor connection, we all continued dancing and singing by ourselves.

The splendid architecture of the monastery reminded Noravank. After spending an hour there, we retraced, and the way back seemed easier and shorter. And we all kept singing national songs.

For each of us, this journey brought one more reason to love and appreciate our homeland, nature, the small springs hidden in the mountains, and blossoming cherry trees and dry rosehip branches…

You start loving your homeland even more when you learn to discover it. Homeland is your beloved friends and kind people you meet on your way, the small dog that joins to walk with you, the candle you light in the ancient monastery, and the sound of bells.

Elina Danielyan

12th grade


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