25 October 2009

Things ya just gotta do.

My wife Gina and I spent some time this afternoon at our local "Feria de Alfeñiques" to gather some things for our annual "Día de los Muertos" (Day of the Dead) ofrenda (altar). The yearly fair has turned into a combination Halloween bazaar and alfeñique sales event. The alfeñiques are little skulls and things that are made out of almond paste and sugar that people use to adorn their altars to welcome their dearly departed souls when they return home visit on the eve of All Souls Day, November 2nd. As I was walking along while Gina, our "ofrenda" engineer, was "oohing and ahhing" over all of the neat little things for sale, I spotted a little boy about ten or twelve years old and he was looking pretty glum. His mother was selling Halloween costumes and she made him dress up like a pumpkin in this little padded pumpkin vest and pumpkin hat.

The poor kid looked miserable. I stopped to talk to him and asked him why he looked so unhappy. He told me that he hated being dressed like a pumpkin and that he was afraid that his classmates from school would see him and he would never be able to live it down. I told him that sometimes you just have to do what your Ma says no matter what. I said that she probably didn't like the way she looked when she was carrying him inside her for nine months and how fat she was. I told him about the time that my Ma decided to make swimming suits for her four kids to save money and that I being the oldest child was about his same age at the time. There was nothing that I could do. I didn't want to hurt my Ma's feelings so I didn't say anything. I also didn't want my friends to laugh at me so that is the year that I didn't go swimming. I also told him that my Ma died three years ago and that if I could bring her back by wearing a pumpkin suit I surely would. That made him smile a bit and I asked him if I could take his picture and he nodded okay. Here it is:

5 comments:

glorv1 said...

That was a sweet to do do. I'm sure the young man felt better after talking to you. You're a good man Charlie Brown. Take care.

Constantino (Tancho) said...

Gee Bob, you keep surprising me all the time....not really, I have discovered that your caring is exhibited in your stories and writings...keep it up!
Tancho

Steve Cotton said...

Great tale. Great photograph.

Star said...

I'm sure that boy will never forget you. What a nice story to start my day, thank you!

Alice said...

Little does he know that you posted his picture for the expat world to see! I have a feeling that pep talk will go with him for a long time..

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I was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A. I have been living in Mexico since January 6th, 1999. I am continually studying to improve my knowledge of the Spanish language and Mexican history and culture. I am also a student of Mandarin Chinese.