I was in an unknown country. There were long avenues full of extremely refined buildings and houses; the streets were larger than life, with carefully planned flowerbeds and gardens. The houses were huge, enormous mansions in modern style – they had straight and geometric architectural traces – though there were no architectural, geographic or historical references which could allow me to discover where I was, after all.
I know “when” I was, however. It was the end of afternoon, but everything was still clearly illuminated by a golden and wet light, as the sunlight behind clouds would look after a soft rain. The smell was also wonderful – flowers and soft herbs that I would like to bottle. I walked so much that the landscape changed. The streets got narrower, without any paving; the houses became shacks. The humidity there took the shape of puddles in the potholes on the streets. I was afraid, for it was getting dark and I still didn’t know where I was and where I was going.
I saw a group of kids playing ball on the street and I noticed they seemed to be speaking Spanish. The father of one of them came to tell them to go home. When this happened, it was already dark. I asked the man, in Spanish, where I was and what time was the next bus getting out of there. Apparently I was in an altered reality: I was in Argentina, but the next bus would take me to Espírito Santo (Vitória) in only four hours. But the bus would only come on the following day, so I went to spend the night in the hotel the stranger had recommended to me.
It was one of those simple, but very comfortable hotels, one of those you don’t want to leave anymore. I had to wait there in order to catch the next bus out of that place. Meanwhile, I called my boyfriend, who was almost like a husband to me. It was an immense comfort talking to someone like that – a husboyfriend, so to speak, someone who was worried about me and made that clear in his speech, someone who loved me and had no scruples hiding it – more than that, someone who wanted to make it obvious how much he cared about me and loved me. At that moment I felt like I didn’t need anything more in the world than that voice.