Bonus

You can live your life lonely heavy as stone
Live your life learning and working alone
Say this is all you want
But I don’t believe that it’s true
‘Cause when you least expect it
Waiting round the corner for you

Love comes quickly whatever you do
You can’t stop falling

Hague/Lowe/Tennant

nectarThe main supermarket in town has a card for rewarding the purchaser with points.  Occasionally, at the end of a shopping spree one receives a surprise bonus.  It’s best to hit the jackpot when the store is not busy because the routine goes something like this:

  • the cashier closes out your shopping for the day
  • at the bottom of the receipt prints the announcement of your reward
  • today, I won a free container of juice – Yay! – guayaba– double yay!
  • the reward has to be verified, so the bagger goes through all the bags looking for the item that generated your free gift.  As I had also bought durazno (peach) and mango in addition to guava, this created a slight bit of confusion as each juice had to be either denied or confirmed as qualifying
  • then a manager has to be located to clear the reward from the register
  • you must take your reward at the moment – ahoraita – this entails either (a) walking completely around the many checkout lanes OR (b) heading back through the line you’ve just moved to the head of – that causes people to back up, when they can, and/or move their cart aside to let you squeeze past, and other gymnastic events.  Most everyone, including me, walks back through the line.  Countless shoppers are thrilled to learn you’ve won a free juice.
  • Once free of the throng, you head to the aisle and locate your reward – as the store is constantly in a state of subtle rearrangement, you may have forgotten in which aisle your reward is located, which may cause you to wander through the wilderness as in days of yore
  • Once you’ve found your reward, it’s back to the checkout line to show your reward and receipt to the checkout clerk – the clerk may or may not have remembered you or may be so busy that s/he could care less how many juices you’ve apprehended or … shudder … the clerk may have gone on break or ended his or her break, in which case you may have to repeat one or more of the previous steps
  • and you are on your way

So is it worth it?  How many rewards go unclaimed?  That depends:  I don’t go back for crema, but I do for juice.

Volunteer work

My inability to master the language has made my work for the NGO frustrating.  Perhaps in other roles it would be less of a handicap, but given the nature of the administrative work my lack of mastery is proving to be problematic and I’ve resigned (again); however, this is the true resignation.  The other time I resigned there was a lingering  doubt that I could be of service.  Now it’s a matter of my not wanting to continue due to the high frustration:low reward ratio.

Love Comes Quickly

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