In the middle of the night, a thief climbs into the house of an old Galician peasant Ivan. The owner catches him and hesitates what to do: to let the thief go or to punish him. Guests come to Ivan, and all together they are trying to decide what to do with the burglar.
Ivan himself is preparing to leave his homeland with his sons and wife in search of a better life, but he is afraid that he will be forgotten just like a failed thief. The departure for Canada being tantamount to his own death, Ivan holds a farewell party that feels like a funeral for him and his family. In his own memory he erects a stone cross on a hill.