Oh my goodness. I did it. Just what I’ve been afraid of doing……for the last 6 months. I lost my little “bolsa” which has ALL my money in it. Doh! Don’t ask me why I put ALL my money in there, I Keep asking myself that over and over and am getting sick thinking about what I should have done! I was sitting on the malecon (boardwalk) looking out over the sea (dreaming of sailing to Cuba and wondering what it was like on the sailboat right now for Garance and her new friends) I was juggling a few things in my hands (my money bag “bolsa”) my camera (I had just been taking sunset shots) my backpack with my journal and favorite book “Writing Down to the Bare Bones” my journal,pen………and a melting ice-cream cone. I got up and walked away….with out my bag! Oh my gosh. I realize about 5 minutes later when I was in a pharmacia fantasizing about buying some really good smelling sunscreen (coppertone!…after all, I am in that dreamy tropical place that the smell always make you think of!) I decided against it (my budget is to tight to spend 140 pesos on sunscreen I don’t really need) I went to buy a bottle of water instead and thats when, in horror, I realized I had left it on the malecon. I frantically raced out of there and prayed to god the whole way back, that it would be sitting there, but it wasn’t. Of course it wasn’t! I still have my passport, though…..that is good. 🙂 I’m sitting here trying to write this entry at a cafe (who’s architecture and music….I LOVE) I’m looking at a fellow from Cuba who has been soo nice to me. His eyes are hard no to look at. THey are amazing. He’s sitting here reading a book while he waits for customers to come in. He is quiet and kind seeming with a gentle demeanor. He grew up in Cuba. As I’m talking to him, I’m busy slapping down a slew of stereo types on these Cuban people I hardly know and am so curious about (they are beautiful,they are gentle, they like books, there are empathetic………..I want to visit their land so bad! I fear that in our exchange, he can tell I’m slapping down all these new stereotypes on Cubans. I feel extra sensitive to our human tendency to do this. When I was in Chiapas, there were almost NO Americans anywhere and so I was the “American” Oh, she’s blonde….Americans must be blonde. OH, she likes strawberry popsicles…American must like strawberry popsicles…….you get the idea! I could feel the stereotypes being placed on me. Though I try to stay away from stereotypes, its such a natural tendency. Our brains are doing the best they can to understand the new world around them and by placing info in ready made categories, its much easier to understand the world and have a sense of control about it. One stereotype I ran into a lot, when I was living with Sonia in Chiapas was that all Americans are prejudiced against black people. Whenever we had dinner parties with her friends and or relatives…….they asked me what I thought about Obamba and the fact that he was “negro”. At first, I assumed they were disapproving of it but then after a conversation with Sonia, I realized they assumed I was! Imagine, all of this conversation is happening in Spanish…..so there are bits a pieces I’m missing!
Ah, la vida. I still can’t believe I did that. Now what???!