Costa Rica :: Part 23

This story is being told as a series. Here’s a link to Part 1

Part 23

I was standing there just outside the bar area, when Ciro and Chucho came up, surprising me. Always the one to do the talking, Ciro told me I looked like I was waiting for someone. Am I so transparent?

I tried to explain, failed miserably, and Ciro sent Chucho to get me another margarita. “No, no, I don’t need one,” I called after him, but my voice couldn’t penetrate the din around us. No matter; the drinks were free so I could simply accept it with thanks and feel no obligation to drink it. Or much of it.

As Chucho returned, Ciro excused himself, saying he’d be right back. It seemed… slightly contrived. Left suddenly alone, Chucho and I shared a momentary awkward silence, then at last were able to muddle through a conversation. We managed to agree, in his broken English and my broken Spanish, to go sit and watch the show that was just about to begin. He seemed unconcerned that Ciro had said he’d return and we would not be there. We sat as the lights went down, the show began, and the seasons were expressed through dance and acrobatics.

As the first season passed, Chucho rested his hand next to mine. As the second season passed, his fingers brushed mine lightly, tentatively. A test, a dance, a question — would I withdraw or allow it? Unthreatened by his touch, I did not move away. By the time the final season was underway, he was holding my hand.

The show ended, we separated hands, we applauded the dancers as the lights came up. I noticed and commented that he only applauded the female dancers. He smiled and said “Yes, of course,” and I laughed.

We walked toward the back of the theatre, and there was Ciro. He laughed when he saw us, as if he had expected as much, and then he somehow disappeared again. Chucho and I went to sit in the now-abandoned restaurant, close enough to the bar to hear the music but far enough away to attempt a conversation. We were patient with each other, neither one of us anywhere near fluent in the other’s language. He did much more of the work of translating. After a bit, exhausted from the effort, he invited me to walk with him.

Copyright © 2010

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~ by lorakceel on May 20, 2010.

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