For a long time after my last, much-anticipated Brazilian stay, I tried to process a large measure of disappointment. Here in my mind I had built Salvador da Bahia — visited and loved twice before — as my nirvana, where I would happily retire in the future. But, as will happen, reality intervened. Not the least of which was the fact that hardly anyone in Salvador speaks English. And although I had taken Portuguese lessons, I was far from fluent in that difficult language.
Sooo, back home in San Diego, I took stock of myself. Even though I pretty much kept up with my walking regimen — I had done 14k most days in Brazil! — I was in a funk that had me OD-ing on tv and crunchies. But at last I decided I must pull out of this.
First stop, my life coach Pam for understanding and motivation. Next, I marched myself into 24-Hour Fitness and worked my way around the equipment circuit. Then home to send overdo email replies, put up a positive blog post, a good night’s sleep and in the morning head out to a movie. Don’t remember what it was, but the few of us who showed up at the Landmark Hillcrest discovered that the media had it wrong — there was no morning show today!
Ah well … I took the opportunity to cruise downtown and beyond. And then hungry, I drove to IHOP for my favorite International Passport breakfast. As usual I had a book tucked in my bag.:”The Darker: Tales of A City Different” ordered from Amazon.com after I stumbled upon an indelible excerpt from the unique tome by a young Hispanic Santa Fe guy.
As I sipped my coffee, immersed in the book, I was interrupted by the maitre de. “A gentleman has paid for your meal.” As I said, “Are you serious?” he smiled and nodded.
Later as I sat responding to music I had recorded in Brazil, preparing for some heavy-duty writing, I took it as a sign. Not that I believe everything happens for a reason — I’ll put my chips on happenstance — since curious, quirky, surprising coincidences have without a doubt been the story of my life.
And this “first” — an unseen somebody buying my meal with nothing to gain — may just mean that there’s still hope for the world, as well as for moi. Y’think?