La Vuelta

Tonight was a night that invited quiet reflection. From my car, in the traffic bottleneck (tapón) I took the opportunity to blog using voice to text on my cell phone…. ahh technology.  Here it is:
Olaia had a party, she also had a funeral mass. I tried to accommodate both in one night: the highs and lows of being alive.

She sang beautifully like an angel the words remembering a life were moving.  She let me know she was touched and sad, but found she could not cry when she saw such faith strength and peace in her friends’ family.  So many inspired words were said, dripping in religious imagery combining faith and memories in every sentence. It was sad. A friend her age lost her father. It was unbearable. I cried like a baby myself. But Olaia, along with her choir mates and her friend who also is in the choir, sang and their harmonies filled this church that fit easily 200 people.

We rushed out of the neighborhood. Got home. Olaia ran up the stairs, her excitement took away her appetite. THe front door of the welcome back dance of her other friend’s school closed at 10pm. Tickets were bought. Friends were waiting.  She was done in a jiffy. Cute as a button . She grabbed a bag with some popcorn, courtesy of her Dad- the popcorn king- and out the door.

Condado what’s teeming with activity young group of people walking together laughing couples walking in romantic dates outdoor cafes were full of customers I cook off in the of music fills the air families were out for an ice cream. Passing right before us as we inched and waited, inched and waited. Hoping it would inch its way to the party before 10pm.

The merriment outside, the trivial angst we lived in our car felt like we were trapped in bizarre fairy tale. Where the carraige turned into a pumpkin and the party was about to close and leave this good hearted young maiden out.

I have been there before, struggling with time. I told her her destination was but two block away.  But she did not dare get out of the car and walk alone. I felt like a wicked step mother, asking her, assuring her to go ahead – it was after all bizarro fairy tale.

The world at night was still new. She would not go.  Walking alone in the streets felt strange and unprotected.  I reassuredagain, she could walk the block ahead and I would see her.

Then as if by magic, as if the heavens had heard Olaia’s quiet cry, thankfully, the traffic moved just an inch or so. We were at the hotel lobby door.  She stepped out of the car triumphantly leaving me to join the sea of cars once more.  She was free, I was trapped. But as my ridiculous fairy tale angst ended, the sea of monsters impeding me from getting home became a relaxed beach like wave action.  To and fro, inch by inch.

The cars around me did not scold people with their impatient honks and rapid abuse of their horns. No-that would have been rush hour and this was not that.   There was no hurry.  The cars were mostly full of friends out for the night, just driving looking at the sites. They were happy to spend an hour or two in the car, all dressed up, nowhere to go just inching along. I heard alive trumpet play Latin jazz I heard reggae music not too far from that people from India people from the Muslim world Asian tourist with the camera African American couple honeymooning enjoying the warm moist air of the black and brown night full of color full of flavor with trumpets and a classical string quartet the night seemed magical worthy of an inch and I’ll and yet there I was driving alone enjoying my air conditioner in my little bubble enjoying vicariously the lights outside my window the life outside my window.

The world IS full of magic.