It’s been like this for days. The words dancing in my head. I’ve spent most of my time in a van. On a tour. Driving in Houston and College Station and San Antonio and Austin. Driving across the border to Louisiana. Louisiana looking like Cuba. This is my prep time for my trip next month. Humidity, acres of green, no toilet paper in public bathroom and the spirits. There’s one in this house. We are here for a total of two days. Floor boards creak while I pray. She stands behind me. Beside me. I can’t see her but I feel her. I pray.
I forgot about this. The spirits of New Orleans. I was overcome with sadness as we got closer, as we saw bodies of water. In my heart they felt turbulent. Overcast sky. Katrina wasn’t that long ago. I saw the waves go up and down. Wet skin, the wails. This is my prep for Cuba. I thought I was meant to go to India to purge. Plans changed. I am not the best of planners. I am ready… I think…
It is the South and the clouds seem bigger. The land flatter, the people looking more familiar. The South is like home. Not like Brooklyn, not like Oakland, like the place my family still lives. The place I will go to soon. To write. Not on a blog, probably on paper. Stories that I have never heard. Stories that need to be told. My abuela is 107 years old but she doesn’t remember me. Will she remember anything? Like the way I like to touch her arm and smile into her warm eyes. Will she remember that I am the grandchild that lives far away and comes for days at a time, years in between rainfalls and sunshine?
I want to write more but I am not here alone. There’s eight of us. Beautiful and fabulous and loving. We’re going to the French Quarter now. I hear about the spirits there. I am sure they will find me. I am not worried. I am protected.