Though it’s pouring, we had three pints of ice cream and three bags of potato chips made fresh for us. Cecilia, Agostino, Julio, and I had to go to three places to find Cookies and Cream pints and the best potato chips. We all, including their candy and cigarettes tried to fit under my cartoonish little umbrella. We were a spectacle all night.
I bought a coffee at the Italian Coffee Company, even though it was after 8 and I didn’t need any caffeine, so we would have the excuse of taking up a table. At one point, Mateo asked why I was sipping the coffee so slowly, I reminded him it was our reason for being seated. He got it. It also gave us license to use the restroom which the cold, rain-soaked, sometimes chattering boys needed to do.
We sat and talked for about an hour. At one point, Agostino got very mad when a man in a red polo was looking at me. I told him people just wanted to know what we were up to, but he went up to him and put his dukes up. The guy left.
Then a guitarist came to our table to sing “La Llorona,” and all of the kids left! They really don’t like music or dancing. They think it odd when I try to get them to dance.
While we were waiting for a pause in the rain, Cecelia, the huntress of the family, caught a slow bird and released it after a few minutes because the poor creature was crying so adamantly. It kept crying even after it was safe in its nest.
When it was time for me to head out into the downpour, we made plans for where and when we’d meet again. I was waiting to request the bill. Agostino charged into the establishment to tell them I was ready, and the waiter appeared immediately to take my money. Twice he took care of me!
One more thing, there is a man with glasses who carries a pile of at least forty scarves (or runners). He stopped me again last night and said as plaintively as Cecilia’s bird, “I have seen you for years and you have purchased nothing from me.” I agreed and explained, “All of my money is for my family here.” As I said it, I looked at Rosita; she was smiling, and the man understood.