I’m in the sunshine. Walking the streets feeling the nostalgia of living in the big city passing by jewelry stores and back alleys with the fragrance of piss. The smells I don’t miss. I am liking this, though. Liking all the people around. Walking and walking, driving and driving. I’m in LA where palm trees are high and the people are pretty. It is here in this city that a part of me is found. There is Latino culture everywhere. Even the bathroom of the club where the attendant sells lollipops and gives you a hand towel. I tip well reminiscing of my time spent in Venezuela. I am loving it here and I haven’t even been to the beach.
My papi called. He left a message asking me how my trip is going and asked me to call him back. In his voice I can hear that he wanted to tell me something. I called and he started his round about ways of telling something that is going to affect me. And during that time I am thinking, what has happened to one of my brothers, my nieces, my mother or aunt? I stopped him before he went even further and told him to spit it out. When he gets like that it totally annoys me. I am not fragile. I can handle anything. It’s like when my mami didn’t tell me my cousin’s dog died until a month later because she knew I would be sad. He finally told me that my Tio Pilo died. The one in Cuba. The one that was married to my Tia Rosa. The one that took forever to tell me a story but who was proud of me the yankee with the socialist thinking.
I understand death. I understand that even if we don’t want anyone to go, even if we love them so much and we will miss them everyone has their own time. So when I stood in the middle of the sidewalk and tugged unto a fence, I knew this. I knew this with every tear and words of anger when explaining to my dad that he can’t keep on telling me things in that fashion. What hurts the most is that with every death I have experienced in the past few years I have never been able to go be with my family so we could grieve together. Whether is has been in Cuba or in Florida. It is the distance between here and Cuba not georgraphically but politically that hurts the most. Sometimes I fell like a broken record because I have been writing this over and over again but over and over again this keeps on happening. To sooth the pain I have stopped calling as much. I know this isn’t the best way to handle things. I just noticed. Just now. With this death, with this writing I have noticed my escapism. Alhamdullilah, I noticed.
This is part of my experience being in LA. Embracing the openings and endings. The sunshine, the darkness. The cool breeze and even the smells that remind me of being in this world.