Untitled and Unremembered

I honestly don’t remember writing this, but it is in my journal. I know it was on a bus in Northern Argentina, but that’s about it. It was on the way up to see the Cataratas

 

Lights come up and a man is aiming a gun at a tourist-y looking woman. You can hear city noises in the distance.  She has her arms above her head.

WOMAN  (After an extremely long pause) …just shoot me.

MAN  Listen lady, gimmie your fucking shit before I blow your brains into next week (his hand is shaking slightly but he steadies his aim. She remains somber.)

WOMAN  No. (pause) I said shoot me. (She slowly lowers hers arms) its ok, do it.

MAN  Put your hands back up! (She remains tense and still, calming her nerves) I’m serious! I will- (He takes a small step toward her and she raises her arms halfway) you aren’t a good listener bitch. Let’s go-

WOMAN  I’m not a bitch, (calmly) you don’t- Don’t call me that.

MAN  BITCH SHUT UP

WOMAN  WHat if I said you were a bitch, or or your mother? How would that feel?

MAN  Fuck, I dunno, you need to just… just shut up and put your hands-

WOMAN  Is your mother a bitch?

MAN  What?

WOMAN  Is your mother, a bitch.

MAN   Tha’s none of your fucking business

WOMAN  (stronger, lowers arms) Then what business is it of yours to call me a bitch?

MAN  I don’t think you understand the situation here

WOMAN  (Suddenly aggressive and nervous) No. I don’t think YOU Understand that you should go ahead and fucking (screams) SHOOT ME!

MAN  (Stutters but regains his position of power slightly) I- I well don’t call her a bitch again.

WOMAN  Is she?

MAN  My mother?

WOMAN yes, a bitch? (SHe takes a step back and he takes a quick step toward her, steading his aim again)

MAN  So what if she is?

WOMAN  (pause as she holds back tears) I’m sorry.

MAN  (he becomes angry to stop from feeling otherwise) Look , you need to stop fucking around cause I’m getting sick of this shit.

WOMAN  Fine. (long pause) Who’s important anyway right? I mean if life is yours to bargain with too… or rather, you assume… But I think it will be in a minute… (pause) I don’t want it.. and you don’t either…. but it’s mine.

MAN  WHat the FUCK are you talking about?! You need, I mean, lady you don’t understand what this is.

WOMAN  No. I do. And I thnk you should put the gun away (she takes a step but stops when he stiffens up)  no no no listen, I need you to listen because this isn’t suppossed to happen, you aren’t- this isn’t right and you need to not be here. (SHe shudders and holds back tears, MAN is just confused and stunned) My mom was a bitch too.

MAN  So?

WOMAN  So we have somethings in common

MAN  Things?

WOMAN  Yeah, bitch moms… and some other things

MAN  yeah like what bitch? (regrets saying bitch)

WOMAN  It’s Je-

MAN  (Yells and cuts her off) DON’T tell me your name, goddamit. I don’t wanna know you, like we… why are you even talking to me? You should be scared

WOMAN  I am

MAN  Well fucking…. just…. shut up. I’m nt putting it away, you’ll just run and rat me out.

WOMAN  No, I won;t go back I-

MAN  (Walks right up and points the gun right between her eyes) Listen I don’t wanna know shit about you cept how much money you have and how much your shit is worth (grabs her necklace but lets go nd steps back when they hear a siren, as he is distracted WOMAN pulls out her own gun and puts it to her head. MAN sees and lowers his gun briefly, flabbergasted and s[puttering) Wh-what? Are you crazy?

WOMAN  It’s mine not yours, put your gun away (she is calm on the surface, but her eyes swell with emotions unexpressed)

MAN  n-no you put that shit away

WOMAN  You aren’t going to shoot me

MAN  But you said-

WOMAN  I knew you wouldn’t because that’s not what you came here to do. But it’s what I came here to do and I’m not letting you take this away from me. How dare you even begin to assume that this is yours to play with. It belongs to ME and you could NEVER take it away- you could never find it or see it or use it. It’s in there (pause, slightly less controlled) in that space in the space you cant get to, it’s outside you (she is crying now) My head, my hair (pushes the gun harder against her head) my life

(long pause as they both hold aim, arms shaking. she cocks the gun getting ready)

MAN  Put that shit away lady… y-

WOMAN  no, YOU need to get out of here. Go, GO!

MAN  Put the gun away!

(Her crying slows and she lowers the gun. He lowers his and takes a step to her. Eventually he reaches her and they embrace, she sobs as he slowly places a hand on her head. Suddenly, she shoves him and he falls to the ground)

WOMAN  It’s Jenny. (puts the gun back to her head quickly)

MAN  N-

BLACK OUT and we hear complete silence (perhaps we hear a gunshot)

 

Posadas and the Jesuit Missions

the day before I left I took a stroll over to San Telmo (the long route through the botanical gardens) amazing street art going on, if you wanna check out the album, it’s here. I LOVED that I got some snaps of these kids

But my fav pic that day is of the little guy that lives in our house:

¡¡QUE CUTE!!

Anyway, I left Buenos Aires late at night and woke up the next morning to a sunrise and an itch to write. I had my journal with me, so the rest of this will be unedited from the pages of my journal (unless I choose to leave something out…) I’ll use [brackets] for when I add a note, and the italics indicate when I wrote in cursive:

“17/2/11 7AM On the bus headed to Posadas to see the Jesuit Missions. I am humbled by the modesty and simple grace of the ‘frontier.’ To the left I see a short forest of trees in, what seem to be, defiant straight lines. The sun rose fast and orange over a small town with ruins of ruins, sketches of sketchiness and untamed wilderness strewn with shacks of goods. I saw a sign for Budweiser and found myself wondering about the similarities in all our lives. I feel rich, But who is truly richer? I have never felt so detached from the gray metropolis or the blue seasides that I can familiarize with a concept of home. It reminds me of when [my sister] and I were driving through South Dakota and Colorado. The sense of awe at just how big our world is. And the feeling in your belly button when you realize that it isn’t even it. Once there is more, there is more… and then more and more until your mind stretches out so far that your womb aches and snaps you back. We truly weren’t meant to understand ‘all this.’ We think we are humans but we are really just cattle, no… grass. Once our blip exits the screen, there will be no one to interpret our primitive scratchings. We will only finally refuel the universe in a smaller amount than we took once our foolish graves dissolve and feed back. I wonder if I will ever be famous… and if so, will it ever matter? And now a few words on bus travel. It’s as bad as I thought it would be. Not better or worse. The bus station in Retiro was strange and chaotically efficient. My bus showed up right on time but there was no announcement until (literally) one minute before. The bus isn’t packed, which is nice, normal amount of talky toddlers, but none screamy. As we pulled out of the station a woman one seat ahead and to the left started freaking out. Not too loudly, but noticeably. I didn’t understand a made a ‘that bitch is crazy’ face. Which I still regret [even now re-typing this into a blog] because as she begun to cry I heard the words ‘abuelo’ and ‘murio’… I’m SO SORRY! I’d be a wreck if I found out Abuelito had died. When that day comes… I will not be ready. ooof I can’t even write about Abuelita. It makes me too sad. I wish I had charged my iPod more… it was VERY cold on the bus all night. I’m so glad I brought mom’s/my cardigan at the last second, and these pj pants. I just saw a very skinny cow. Flaca vaca… hahahaha. The cucumber I brought is gross. I can’t believe they served us a meal. It wasn’t great… makes me think twice about complaining about plane food. Also everyone got a Pepsi. No choices, which sucked cause I didn’t want caffeine. Just passed by another smattering of buildings all I saw was ‘bar’ y ‘carneceria.’ [guess that’s all that any city needs really] These must be the ‘saltine crumble cities’ I saw from the plane on the flight to BA. As we ate a movie starring Hillary Duff came on. I literally thought of seven different ways to kill myself with various things I had packed. I tried to sleep but there were two people on the bus snoring loudly. One is behind me and the other one IS BEHIND ME [this was underlined]. Really? REALLY?! You snore like clockwork the whole way and your wife snores like some foley artists’ dream?!! Then I thought of seven ways to stop them from snoring (or breathing) using only the things I packed. I chose #7, loud Daft Punk and finally found some peace. The man across the aisle and one seat back is watching a video with his headphones in and is unaware (or a jerk) that his headphones ARE NOT working. Surprise! Now we all have to listen to that sappy crap. I hope he is embarrassed by his music selection. Why is this country obsessed with the dulce? Everyone eats cookies and drinks Pepsi or café w/loads of sugar. Even that Hillary Duff move movie was syrupy….

Friday: wow wow wowiw wow. I loved Posadas and the surrounding mission area. It was so beautiful. Orange streets, sweet smoke, glitter sea, tranquil faces, maté sipping gentle green trees hills and bush. [This sounds prettier in Español… Calles de naranja, el humo dulce, el mar brillo, se enfrenta a tranquilo, tomandomate suaves colinas verdes árboles y arbustos.] Posadas reminded me a bit of el Centro or Ensenada. But San Ignacio was so simple, but beautiful. It’s as if I visited a jungle city in the clouds, like I was in a movie about visiting the ruins, not like I was actually there. Everyone looked healthy, happy and peaceful. There were horses and dogs running freely through the town. And motorcycles everywhere. Never in my life have I wanted to ride a motorcycle. But seeing those bikes breach the crest of a hill with clouded backdrop and descend down a red clay road passing pink shacks and yellow flowers into the golden purple sunset…well. It was stunning. [This sounds prettier in Español tambien… Pero al ver las bicicletas incumplimiento de la cresta de una colina con telón de fondo nublado y descender por un camino de arcilla roja que pasa chozasde rosa y flores amarillo en la puesta de sol de oro púrpura … bueno. Fue impresionante.] The Mission was about what I expected. Learning about the Jesuit and Guaraní lives and how the town worked was really interesting. The rocks glowed orange blood red, well more like sand on fire. Or burnt skin but less pink. Anyway, I kept sneezing the whole time… allergies. So I was actually glad to leave. But I think the journey there was more important. It was a grand feeling. Walking along the side of the highway, alone, not sure where the bus station was. Completely free, but safe, knowing that I did it all on my own w/o agenda but with only curiosity and my intelligence. The moon shone bright with a mustache as I walked along the river/port in Posadas. Everyone was out jogging, literally everyone. And everyone was enjoying a maté w/friends. It was very enchanting. I had dinner at an ‘Arabian Mexican’ place… very extraño. I had a gyro type thing w/steak, tomatos, [yes I spelled tomatoes wrong twice] corn and cabbage… the tomatos and cabbage seemed like they’d been soaking in vinegar, kinda like the asparagus I had @ Las Violets café en BA. (That sandwich was weird…) But I ate all my Arabian Mexican gyro, it wasn’t good but it wasn’t bad… drinking a bottle of wine helped. I walked back to La Vuela de Pez hostel and passed out. I slept pretty well and this morning woke up and caught the bus to Iguazú where I am now. Things are going well! Strangely, I find myself missing ****** often. I’m gonna miss Posadas, but it deff was a ‘one day town’ the crazy hills, the  resteraunt [restaurant] with the friendly waiters. The dark lit streets and that crazy dark market with all the maté. I deff need to try it out when I get back to BA.

Saturday?? [Insert weird dream here, I will include this part about me and this ugly baby I had] I tell everyone the baby saved my life and some woman on the street said, ‘you best not be buying any nice furniture o theyz be takin’ pictures of that and not the baby!’ everyone laughs as we get into a pink square taxi. [There’s more, but back to reality] weird weird dreams………… ANYWHO I’m on the bus now heading home to BA. (Weird saying ‘home’) I smell like wet dog but am very happy with my weekend excursion. Why do my ankles look so god damn fat!? And what is this scratch on my arm 😦 I have the worst skin. I hate you skin. So I wanted to write about las cataratas [waterfalls] but what is there to say really? They put Niagara to shame. It was an eerily beautiful day, like lightning in the air or like a storm was coming… and it did. I had just walked to the bottom of one of the falls and gotten all wet. On the way back I stopped to eat my sandwich and BOOM rain and thunder and sun. I packed my camera in plastic and napkins and continued on. After a few mins it stopped and I did the rest of the paseo superior. Luckily my camera died right as I left the park. Oh I forgot! My unplanned extra day. Friday I got to puerto Iguazú too late to see the falls so I had to stay the night in a hostel. THANK GOD FOR EXTRA UNDIES. [mom was right] I have never been so grungy in my life and I’m so proud that I figured this all out on my own w/only a backpack and a few torn pages out of Lonely Planet. The hostel was cool, I slept in a 10 person room and just chilled at the hostel all night. I didn’t really fell like exploring, plus they had a BBQ that night so I didn’t have to go looking for a resteraunt. [yes, spelled wrong again] It was really good and I got to chat w/a bunch of people from all over the world. This one guy Tav, from London or UK, really buddied up to me and expected to go see the falls w/me the next day but I politely told him I wanted to do it alone.. I’m glad I did. I like doing things at my own pace. I’m really glad I came here on my own. It’s so much easier to get around! I’m on a nicer bus this time. Blankets! Whiskey! I smell terrible but whatever. I’m drinking my maté and I absolutely love my new cup and straw. I ate WAY too much delicious meat at the hostel… tummy ache now. I need to start doing sit ups. Three more hours to go. I’m glad I was able to sleep last night. AND I got to watch Prince of Persia. It was actually pretty cool, plus my boyfriend Jake G. is such a hottie. Armed officials came onto the bus twice this trip to check our passports which is weird cause they didn’t check at all on the way to Posadas.”

That’s all she wrote!