“Even in the mud and scum of things, something always, always sings.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson
El Matal (Manabi Province) Ecuador
Life planted a subtle surprise in my path last week when I visited El Matal’s quickly-vanishing beach. After walking the low-tide line from one end to the other, I turned around and walked back along the boat-crammed street. Almost instantly, a flash of just-painted color caught my eye, and my serious mood (see:Esperanza-Hope) transformed into one of joy.
The bystanders confirmed my suspicions: Yes; “Maestro” painted the post. They seemed baffled at my enthusiasm. I pointed out that he painted the post out of the joy of his heart and not because he was competing in another post-painting competition! I took a few photos, retrieved a 4 x 6″ card of Diablo Uma and asked if they’d give it to him as a token ‘Thank You’ prize.
As walked away, they called me back; a surprised Maestro stood there buttoning his shirt and wondering what had triggered the infectious enthusiasm that domino-ed along the neighbors until the card reached his hands! I congratulated him on his kind and giving spirit and said that the freshly-painted post represented hope – esperanza – for the residents of El Matal. (See previous post)
He smiled and shrugged, “The post was ugly,” and it was, like many others that have been ignored and often abused as boats and traffic fought for the remnants of available space.
I smiled all the way home, and hopefully he – and the entire group of neighbors – did as well!