[The woman of the colored mice]
Right before the side windows are covered with a sudden slap of wood and we are like inside a tunnel, one of the horses whinnies again and I remember the first time I was on a horse. I was a child and I couldn’t believe the size of the animal. I was terrified, the head of the horse being as large as me. Someone placed me on the saddle and offered me the reins, which I grabbed as if I were already falling. From that point on, I was waiting for disaster to happen, the head would turn and devour my arms or the tail would reach my neck and strangle me. Life is normally simpler, of course. The horse jumped and I flew into the air. In that instant I regretted I wasn’t one with the horse any longer. But one instant later there was no horse, there was no fear. During some moments there weren’t any directions, I was just floating, alone, in a white space. Later on I woke up on a bed, or a lap, some place safe enough that I cannot remember. Between the time I was still floating in the air and the time I went to sleep, I was so light I felt out of my body and I could see my future, mostly a future that wouldn’t happen, even though there were colorful mice digging, chewing and sleeping, and there was a house I would live in.
In the dark, the inside of the carriage seems to have expanded, and waiting becomes a much more evident and involved task than it was before, and one pays more attention to any sounds, even the meaningless ones. The sad man sights again, much louder now, it seems. I cannot hear the old woman sobbing, she might have stopped.
Seeing the future then. As a child or now, the important thing is not to sit and wait to see what becomes present, reality, and then past. The important thing is to tell apart the truthful future from the imaginary. The mice is something that has already happened, but the house I still need to inhabit with someone I will meet is also true. Both events are equally true, come to think of it, all in that floating memory, the future one being as true as the present one.
When we enter in Suicidio the darkness is not only darker, it also becomes and sounds more confined, like an overcast night dancing inside a box. There’s the flutterings of creatures outside and a grinding noise that sounds as two pieces of rusty metal scrapping against each other. Also a loud whisper that I imagine coming from either a fat giant or a distant tornado.
The carriage stops and before we understand that we have arrived the side door opens. “Welcome to Suicidio,” a man outside chuckles, holding a candle but wavering it so much all over the place that it’s a miracle it doesn’t go extinct. He has two eyepatches, one covering each eye. Just like a fly. Each eyepatch is for the most part a piece of opaque, black glass, surrounded by an engrossed rim of reddish leather. The youngster is the first to get off, as if propelled out of the carriage by a spring mechanism. I look at the man and the woman still sitting down, and I’m ready to let them exit before I do, but they remain seated and I just go. The youngster has already gotten his suitcase from the back of the carriage and heads toward an open door in the adjacent building. The man with the two eyepatches has walked up to that door, still holding the candle with one hand, the other arm extended and pointing towards what awaits beyond the door.