The day started with a trip to the bank and then to Mega, the supermarket, for grocery shopping. With that out of the way I headed to Santa Julia for the final time, to finish cleaning the apartment and to turn in my keys. In my last post I talked about the landlord, Jack, and his sense of fairness.
Monday I had taken the refrigerator apart and washed all the shelves and drawers. I had also mopped the floor, wiped down the counters, cleaned the stove, and dusted. I set the trash can on the landing as Wednesday is one of the basura days on Los Chupiros and I hoped Jack or one of the tenants would hand over my trash for me as it wasn’t likely that I’d get to the neighborhood early enough to do that. When I got to the apartment the trash can was gone and I thought that was a good sign. When I got to the kitchen door, though, I noticed that the curtain was drawn, which was odd because I only did that in the afternoons to block the hottest rays of the day. I went inside and noticed, not my cleaning rags and agents, but olive oil and a near full garaf of water. Hmmm. I peeked into the living/sleeping area and whoa, “who’s that sleeping in my bed?” There was a man sleeping, totally oblivious of my presence, and I left, angry as I had paid Jack (Lorry) until the end of the month. Although I hadn’t slept there in almost two weeks, it was still my space. So that’s part of his sense of fairness, too. I tossed his keys over the gate as I walked away.
On the walk home I had my first encounter with a dirty old man in Mexico. The afternoon was hot and I was wearing a scoop-neck sleeveless Henley. The man and I were approaching one another on a narrow sidewalk that had a utility pole in the middle of it. His eyes got big and then bigger as we approached one another, and his head leaned in to get a closer look – I thought he was about to hit his head on the cement pole – and he said “Hay muchas …” and I couldn’t pick up the rest of what he said. As we reached the pole he took the inside and I stepped to the outside, to the street, and walked a little faster.