Tuesday, December 11, 2018


https://www.amazon.com/Memorias-niño-guantanamero-Guantanamero-Spanish/dp/1520725884   MAMA AND THE DEMON.

  It had been 17 years since the Cuban government allowed me to travel to Cuba. Except for the vacations that Mama and brother had spent in Punta del Este and the visit that my wife had made to my daughter - who was already with me over the year, they gave me the go-ahead for the new measures of Raúl Castro and finally I took the Cuban passport with a simple piece of paper that authorized me to travel to my land.
    My daughter and I made the trip together. Many tears and joy among all at 2 in the night when we arrived in the city of Guaso.
   My son, whom I had not seen since he was four, was waiting for the car that would bring us, watching, parked in the corner. It was great emotion of both of us to see each other. He had become a handsome young man, taller than me, athletic and beautiful.
  In the following days he gave me a kiss on the cheeks before going to his studies and also when he returned in the afternoon. He was moved by my nick for fatherly love and sat in the corridor of the house to ask me about Uruguay.
   But the real protagonist of this story was my mother. No crying, just joking and happy for our rejoiced.
   In the afternoon, when the leftovers covered the corridor of her house, we both sat on separate scales or rockers and she told me stories of her ancestors and our childhood. I had left in Montevideo the first book I  wrote "Memories of a Guantanamo child" that still had some gaps to fill and Mama updated me with her memories because she has a prodigious memory of which, in part, I inherited.
  One Sunday, when the shadows of the people grew longer, a parade of ladies from the neighborhood went to their respective religious congregations.
  - There comes Hortensia, the Seventh-day Adventist.
  - And how do you know her if you do not see, Mom?
   - I know her because of her faltering steps and because it is the time when they open her temple. But leave it to me. I know how to handle her.
-Good afternoon G ... .Ahh. Is this your son who came from abroad?
-Yes, the same one you saw and fit.
- Good. A pleasure. I am Seven Day adventist, and I go to my Church. Do you know the Lord, Jesus Christ, who will save us from the final destruction in the seventh age?
 I remained silent and let Mom talk.
  - He already knows the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. If he almost studied a few years for a priest and at the last minute decided for medicine.
  - But you do not know the true Lord who will bring you salvation when the final hecatomb comes
 .-I do not know much about that.- said Mama- I can only tell you that it is like a reincarnation of the devil. At night his eyes turn red as Evil. He gives us terror but we have become accustomed ...
  -If it's from the Catholic Church, it must be from the devil. ¡Hallelujah!
  And Hortensia hurried the step terrified but excited to tell her sisters and the Pastor, of her encounter with a spawn of Satan.
  Mom and I could not help but laugh. I said:
  -Mom. See that there is respect for all religions ...
 - Come on, son. If they do not have a sense of humor, the Lord has not visited her yet.
   As next door my little brother had a pizeria, with fruit smoothie and soft drink. Many people gathered to eat and the ladies of the neighborhood made a stopover to cool off with a soft drink with ice, then they noticed our presence.
  A woman already in years but strong still discovered us.
   - Ahh. G ... You are relieving yourself of the tremendous heat that it makes ... And that handsome man who is by your side. Is it one of your children?
  I shut up. Leaving everything to Mom.
.- Yes. It's my son who came from Uruguay to visit us.
  _ A nice taste. I go to the Pentecostal Church.
  - Ahh... That's good.-I said with precaution.
   - And there are a lot of Pentecostals in Uruguay?
  - Yes I believe. What there are is many Mormons and Catholic Churches
.- Mormons? And what kind of creed do they follow?
   -A very strange one. They believe in Christ and discovered in a cave some gold plates that they added to the Holy Bible.
   -Ahh ... What horror! The Holy Scriptures ... Around here in Cuba there is not. What there is is several Catholic churches. The great Babylon ...
  -Respect my son who is Catholic.
  .- But he has not yet known the strength of the Holy Spirit.
     Mom added:
    -He is almost a priest but then he devoted himself to medicine.
   ._ How good. First doctor than catholic ...
    - Look. I do not know but on dark nights some horns come out like Beelzebub, there are no eyes to resist him, and I am  her mother. I think it's the reincarnated Devil himself ...
  - Hallelujah. May the Holy Spirit enters into it and purify it. For the spirit there are no impossible ...
  - Do not bother him with your words. He will incarnate in you and there will be no God to save you.
    The woman without saying goodbye hurried her step and left without saying goodbye.
   A few minutes later an older mulatto came with a red upper prosthesis and then white pieces. The man was a widower and was selling lottery clandestinely to survive  the poor pension that he earned.
_ Ohh. -He said to me- finally we have you back. How do you like the country now?
  I do not answer. Just greet him with a hand gesture.
  _ How's the business Eduardo? -Said my mother.
  - There. There. People do not have money but for the lottery they still have the old illusion of earning a million. Hehehe
   -Add me ten pesos to my name for the next throw.-Said Mama.
   The old man took out a small notebook and placed Mama's bet,
   .- And where are you going now Eduardo?
    -A touch of saints, with a lot of rum, bongoes, pretty mulattas, dances and purifications of evil spirits.
  I smiled with a jaw and said:
   - Well, I'm going with you to enjoy tonight and remember the late Jélica who went to bembé next to my house when I was a child. I hope God will forgive me for this sin.
  And I went after Eduardo as a young man who wanted to remember his childhood and youth.

                                                                          Orlando Vicente Álvarez


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