This morning I received a message from a YouTube member complimenting me on my videos and thanking me for bringing him a little piece of home. His handle is “belairbear” and from his channel, I gather he’s a San Francisco Giants fan. I assume he lives in California now, but he mentioned that his town is El Refugio and his Colonia is El Ángel. I sent a comment back to him telling him that I live in Barrio Nuevo right next door and I love it here.
In the afternoon, Margarita and I went to Chalchuapa on the microbus. On the highway, a man got on with a tee shirt from the West Valley Family YMCA. That’s in Porter Ranch in the San Fernando Valley of Los Angeles. I lived close by in Granada Hills and Canoga Park for many years and know the area well. The microbus ran out of gas before I had a chance to ask him how he came by the shirt. We ended up walking a bunch of blocks to our destination. The kid who helps the driver also had to walk with a plastic bottle to get some gas.
A year ago, Margarita was a plain dressed country girl with her long hair in a bun, had unshaved legs, wore no makeup, and refused to adorn herself with jewelry. To ride to Chalchuapa to pay the rent and water bill she showered, combed her wet hair long, wore a clean long skirt and matching jacket, put on eye shadow and perfume, donned her silver bracelet and complementing ear rings and her white wedding shoes. I thought she was dolled up for a meeting at the church she had to attend soon after we’d get home. But she changed again before going to the church. What have I created? Everything was tasteful but much of it goes against the Biblical values she professed and which I thought were admirable but silly. Is she becoming Americanized even as I’m becoming more Salvadoran? Is this the meeting of the cultures I’ve read about? The world is truly shrinking and I wish it would slow down.