- stop reading and throw away that newspaper! It's the same every day, is that enough! His father protested, Don Gualberto, scratching his belly with a dirty fork of chili noodles.
‘Yes, said María, keeping the board of the pension detailing the prices of popular dishes.
Putting the sign under the kitchen table, she found a photo from when she was a child, next to her mother.
He looked at her.
- How old was he in this photo?
Don Gualberto, looking at the yellow photo that Maria put on the table, could not control the memory of his wife, miserably crushed by a misgoverned driver.
He took out a black handkerchief made from the pocket of his black pants to wipe away that tear that insisted on falling
Save that, take that photo of me in front of you!, Anesthetizing his feelings with another jug of brandy.
Isabelita, obediently, placed the photo in the service drawer between spoons and colorful lids of old brandy bottles, not without first admiring the friendly smile and the sweetness of its almond-shaped lanterns that she had inherited.
- Now close that view! And don't forget to bring the bag of food for the road workers with the work stopped by the conflicts.
- All right.
- And don't forget to put food for the dogs.
- Well, putting the leftover food on the plates for the dog that no longer ate, only slept.
- Now go - serving another glass of brandy, pure alcohol, which blackened his face and curled his mustache, combed with the same fork, turning to noodle soup - and stop talking about that commemoration.
And, Isabelita, grabbed her bag, and went to the road located on two grounds of the pension, on a hill where the trucks were parked, and many times, they stayed to sleep, when it rained a lot.
It was skirting the restaurants that sold trout and surubis, taken directly from the lagoon on the slopes of the hills, for tourists and travelers in general.
- One day we will have a restaurant like that! She said to her dad, just as he started to open the beer bottles, alone.
- Yes, he said reluctantly, now drinking directly from the brandy bottle, crying on desperation
- will it come to an end ?
she also went to sleep under the mosquito net that her mother had once put on her to protect her from mosquitoes and all those insects that flew when the rain stopped and it was hot. .
The path between the boarding house traced in green had many trees, a waterfall where she always wet her head as well as her feet, before going to the space to help Ernesto, a hill above the road with the construction temporarily disabled.
Upon reaching the hill, under an eerie sun, Isabelita stood on the hill, from where she could see her father's pension, leaning against an old apple tree, under whose guidance. his late mother in addition to the dog, spent the afternoons sleeping, eating apples or removing fleas from the dog
None of that existed anymore.
A tear escaped his eye.
I listened to the noise of the river's waters, not far from there, lost in sand, like cement scattered on the floor.
With her bag of food distributed to all the workers, she was waiting, leaning under a tree, for the dishes to be returned to take home.
-Hey !, beautiful !, the workers said to him, is there no dessert?
- look at her tight blouse!
- Come with Daddy! We will take good care of you!
She did not care.
- Now! Return the dishes! They finished eating! Do you want the dishes? So come on dear!
Put in the bag. Or better I go without the plate.
She left, walking along the side of the river, until she reached the first bridge before the river.
- I can't stand to live like this anymore ! - she exclaimed with a feel anger in her voice.
But...what can I do?
I am totally powerless! - saying that in absolute frustration, and her head down, retaining a tear that insisted to roll down her lovely face.
When, suddenly, she realized that a fork was missing from her purse.
- Could it be that I lost?
, have to go back to those men there? No! Not even dead!
I'm going to come back every day and surely my dad will be sleeping on the bed with a bottle of brandy by his side. But it's better than going back to those men.
He was walking along the road when he saw his father.
- I can not believe it ! It's my dad talking to my school teacher!
My father was gorgeous, well combed perfumed, tidy.
- j had never seen him.like that before - I said to myself, mischievous.
Could it be that he is chasing me? why ?
Or is he trying to substitute my mother ? That would be nice!
I got closer.
The teacher, a lady with very good manners, saw me and waved.
I ran towards her.
-What are you doing here, teacher?
- Your dad looked for me. He says he wants to learn to write to send you to the market with a shopping list.
- That says ?
- bye it is! And I plan to help you, with some classes and a lot of practice. Besides, you are going to have to help him, because it seems to me that he has to work on the road too….
- So, I came to give you some notebooks and some texts, which are on the table in your house - he said smiling.
After so many years, moments, of so much hatred, that was unexpected.
Would that be true about sending me to the market with a shopping list?
I knew it.
However, I saw him looking for the notebooks and the texts from the teacher's bag.
And I saw him find a pencil and a sharpener in my school bag.
I saw him sitting at the boardinghouse table, scribbling on the bread papers duly lined with horizontal lines where he practiced calligraphy and making copies of the texts with words and drawings.
In sum ; I saw it progress, through study.
And I saw him shopping at the market with a list in hand, written by him.
And I saw him throwing the brandy bottles in the trash, petting the dog.
He is a person, and the pension, now fixed, was full of people, trucks and cars of all kinds to order fresh fish from the river, his new specialty that I helped collect and always serve with a new dress and a smile on his face .
After a year or maybe two since his first class, our life had changed for the better, because at least now we talked like people do.
- Little daughter, today we are going to go out to look for a bigger house - he told me.
- of course ! - I replied, happy with life.