This elderly brother and sister lived alone, miles away from a village or city in the foothills of the Baba Mountain range near Bitola, Macedonia. They had so little for themselves, and yet when I was hiking through with a Macedonian friend in 2007, they immediately invited us for Turkish coffee over an outdoor flame and began looking for something for us to take with us.
When I asked if I could take their picture, the woman responded with a soft but strong "Ne" (No). But when I asked if they would take a picture with me, she relented. Then she walked over to a broken bit of mirror hanging on the side of their ancient, low-slung, stone house, peeked at her image and fixed her hair. In that moment, I was looking at a young and beautiful girl, and the difference in our ages, our lives and our cultures disappeared.