Saturday, 18 October 2014

A deep sleep

Most of us have, at some point in our lives, experienced the joys of travel and on some occasions something deeper. Connected with that profundity, I’d like to mention that nowadays there are many people who go on SPIRITUAL JOURNEYS, probably looking for the “Nirvana”, the meaning of life or simply to understand themselves. Some examples of this are the pilgrimages to Santiago de Compostela or to Mecca. For this reason, I’ll try to tell you one of my journeys to my grandparents’ village, where I discovered new exciting places and interesting people. Certainly, too often, it seems we glamorise places that are far away and unknown, and step around those that are to hand and superficially familiar:

 It was a wet morning of February or March, in the first years of the 80s, when I decided to leave the charming whitewashed house of my grandparents, where my family had slaughtered (chopped up the body of) a pig, without any compassion; unbelievably, their love for imitating the Texas Chainsaw Massacre with animals, was compatible with their love for pets. With the smell of boiled onions (used to make black pudding) still in my nose, I was wandering around the village, where, although I would have been only seven or eight years old, I knew my way around like in my own neighborhood. Anyway, I went up the main street until I arrived at where the council was building a viewpoint and when I got to the highest place in the village, I found a vacant looking man, who would have been in his early thirties, sitting quietly and doing something suspicious.
Today, I still remember his deep black eyes and his shoulder-length hair. He was very handsome: with a Roman nose, thin lips and tanned complexion; although, it could have been coated in dirt. He looked like a Christ of Easter: not very tall, but with an athletic body. His rough hands and his miserable face were covered with bruises.
At that time, I didn’t have any embarrassment, therefore, I asked him about what he was doing there. At first, his reaction was to hide away from me in the building works and I was sufficiently foolish to follow him to discover his small secret.
“It’s a puppy,” he said.
His quiet and trembling voice, with an accent so familiar to me, was sufficient to show the magnetism of this taciturn, naïve and truly emotional man. From that moment, we didn’t say anything. I was miles away, stroking the little dog and smiling at nothing.
Some years after, I discovered he was an eccentric man, who garrulous people said was mad and thus, made fun of him. However, I admired him (but, in silence) and respected him for having resisted the village idiots and facing the hurt of a brainless mob.

Y quedan, allá lejos, por las altas eras, unos agudos gritos, velados finamente, entrecortados, jadeantes, aburridos:

- ¡El lo… co! ¡El lo… co!

                                                                                          Platero y yo by Juan Ramón Jiménez

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