She had a way of dragging the broom around the house so that the dust didn’t leave the floor. When she washed the clothes she hung them to dry, dripping wet so that waterfalls of soapsuds fell to the ground. Before she washed the clothes she would check the pockets and if she found one cordoba, she would put it aside, later saying,
“I found one cordoba in your pocket”. To remind us, she is honest. When I cook her dinner, she waits until I say,
“Eat!” to pick up her fork. She is 43 and her grandmother’s teachings have not left her.
“Never touch anything that isn’t yours.”
She stops at 10am to pray at the local church. Shuffles two blocks, shuffles back, smiling, to rub the clothes onto the concrete wash-stone under the sun.
Later in the morning she fills buckets till they are heavy with water and drags them to the garden, where she does the real work. Singing to the basil, the rose and the small avocado bush. So that they reach out their roots, to bloom, then dance. The soil is not good, but she knows that a seed planted anywhere can flower.
She brings the empty buckets back to the house, they clang like church bells all the way along the path.
“That rose bush is looking good,” she says, smiling upwards.