She said, "leesen", and then she scratched her tiny shoulder with 4 fingers in rhythm, It sounded like horses quietly galloping, and she said: "Dats horses."
Meeting The Family
I knew I would be meeting her mother and sister. I knew they were going to have tough questions to ask. Who wouldn’t? I was asking the family to trust me with their youngest daughter while I took her out of her country for the first time. I prepared. I made a list and I practiced how to answer in the best Spanish I could muster. On the day of the interrogation, I took Aleja and her sister to a movie. Nathalia seemed to like me. Good, I needed every ally I could get in that room. Her mother would
be home soon and the clock was ticking.
We climbed the stairs and entered the home. We exchanged casual niceties. I had brought a plant. It seems like a hollow trade now. I can’t believe I was that foolish: “Here’s a plant to take the place of the daughter you raised.”
It was a machine gun staccato of questions and I felt my palms get wet, but I sat up straight and I answered honestly and humbly. I made eye contact and I admitted that there would be hardships and that I wasn’t interested in just adding a slave to my passenger list. I wanted a partner. I saw a slight tension release from the shoulders of Dona Aura. There was a long pause. They looked around the table at each other. Dona Aura said “Pues, Bueno que mas vamos a hacer, tomemos cerveza?”
I whispered to Aleja: “did your mom just suggest we drink beer?” “Yes!”
I immediately stood and volunteered to buy. AB and I walked out the door, down the steps and out of sight. “I think we won!” I think we won too!”
Alejandra has a boyfriend. Her boyfriend isn’t stupid, just Spanish disabled. When she said that her friends were throwing her a “despedida” (goodbye party), I thought she said “desaparecida”, which means “disappeared”. Hilarity ensued. I made the mistake of wondering aloud if I would get more for selling her whole or by the kilo. The butcher at the carniceria didn’t think it was very funny. I’m probably not going to try that joke with her mother.
The Last Day Of February
We departed Medellin. Hair pinned and hair brained switchbacks were the norm.
Jardin, Manizales, Salento, Cocora, Tulua, Cali, Rosas, Pasto, Lago Cocha, Las Lajas: We meandered our way out of Colombia. It was the first time she had ever left her own country. How would she live without Arepas?
|Now this is how to eat chicken. The shirt was later donated to a cold dog|
The Arepa – The Leatherman Of Foods
The arepa is a wonderful building material. It’s also a sturdy projectile for self-defense. However, the consumer grade commodity product that arrives at your table in the plastic basket with your silverware isn’t really fit for eating.
|That's the commodity arepa|
adjunct. A little mortar and paint and you could build yourself an outhouse – and you’re gonna need one. It’s also the perfect size and weight to use as self-protection from a starving dog (they won’t eat them either). None of the above applies to the Venezuelan version.
|Cold Dog of Cocora Valley|
PRB ~ It Doesn't Stand For Pabst Blue Ribbon
It’s the phonetic replication of the Spanish language; which sounds like a motorcycle with a sputtering carburetor issue. Listen, here’s the proof: “podrias probar esta para remover la pintura”. You must remember that the “v” sounds like another “b”. It's the constant babble of the Spanish language that refuses to ever downshift into a slower more comprehensible gear. I now live with a native Spanish speaker and I’ve never been closer to quitting the language.
“Wanna Mix Things Up?”
Before Columbus came to the New World, there were no oranges in Florida,
Acting Class 101
Your man on point,