And …

17 05 2010

She’s off again … going backwards …. back to the place that felt like home.


Volcanic Ash Part 2

3 05 2010

We are recovered taken back to where we started from, the insurance company paying the cost of a taxi … as it Spain on a Sunday … no recovery truck willing to do the distance. I am sitting there in the front of that taxi with the overwhelming urge to cry, my chance of getting to France now lost; no idea what to do next. Already I had taken the kindness of strangers to the limit.

I swallowed my proud and made a call to an old friend from the taxi, asking for help … it seemed so wrong that after one year of being away I am ringing them again asking for help, putting my dramatic problems on their doorstep – not the way I wanted to go back … not the way I planned it at all. He offers me a place to stay immediately, so I head in the direction of the place I called home for the first time in a year.

I turn up looking like a Romanian Gypsy, eyes as dull as coal, face bare and hair scrapped back. I feel ugly, I feel useless, I feel old. We sitting at a café drinking coffee and catching up, then back at his house all of a sudden the room is full of people, my tiredness and my rusty (and never that hot) Spanish making it impossible for me to keep up. I am giving 2 kisses and saying hello and after that I fade quietly back to the sofa. It’s funny but that’s when I first saw Mario – he is from Chile he rents the upstairs of my friends house – I remember being introduced but I don’t remember registering him.

The next day, after precious sleep I spend the day with the 2 boys my friend and Mario, we sit drinking small beers outside, after the previous week of not knowing if I was coming or going having two people concerned if I was eating enough felt overwhelming, the kindness of one old friend and a stranger both looking after me was all encompassing.

That night we friend has to go to work, Mario is taking me out with his friends, we are heading onto one of the strips, on the back of scooters … remembering the life and the freedom that I loved so much once upon a time, before the moss begun to grow under my feet.

I don’t remember who kissed who, I don’t remember where it happened or why. We partied until the sun come up, I remember leaving the bike at a club and us walking back to the apartment, I remember laughing constantly and I remember falling asleep entwined with Mario. For the rest of the week I moved upstairs, for the rest of the week he become my 24/7 companion. My friend, far from being annoyed, seemed delighted, the 3 of us spent the days together … eating, talking, laughing. Of a night I visited old friends with Mario in tow, or made new ones as he took me to his haunts. I watched them dance salsa and try to make me join in.

We made love … a lot. We talked just as much, in broken languages, told our stories, laughed about things that seem to transcend cultures and times. By the time it was time for the airspace to reopen I was left wishing that the threatened brother of the volcano would erupt and leave me safe in this moment. But all too soon, the flight was booked and it was time to come home.