Friday, March 17, 2006


Lobito y Maria Jose

Little Lobo, who you saw in an earlier post in the mask, is the source of a growing collection of cute stories. When we first met him three years ago, he was five. He, his mother Eliana, and his sister Maria Jose live with his grandparents - Cesar and Chela (Cayo's parents). We were visiting their house for the first time and Lobo was rather fascinated with us. He kept bringing us various objects to show. At dinner, he left and returned with a large watermelon, which he wanted us to have. Of course, we had to refuse so we wound up with some of his school artwork.

On new years day, Emily and I went with Eliana and Lobo to get his new Christmas bike. We took his old bike to a neighbor to give to their child, then on to the bike shop to retrieve his new one. On the way back, Lobo rode his bike. We stopped at a school yard, where he proceeded to show off for some other kids. Unfortunately, the bike got the best of him. His finger became entangled in the brake handle as the two separated and resulted in a trip to the emergency room to repair his finger. He spent the rest of the day and evening with a huge bandage on his finger. He was pretty brave. I don't think it was his first encounter with pain. The first photo shows him trying a circus act. The second one was taken just as he was falling.

The other Lobo theme throughout the New Years holiday was that he had a very loose tooth that was driving him (and everyone else) crazy. He couldn't leave it alone. Andy and Cayo kept wanting to tie a string between the tooth and a doorknob and shut the door. But Lobo didn't want any of that. Besides, if he actually lost the tooth, he would relinquish much of the attention he could get by wiggling and turning it. Finally, sometime on New Year's eve, his mom tired of the drama and grabbed Lobo by the head and yanked it out.

Here is a picture of the two of them following the crime. He is not really in anguish, just posing for the picture. He is sort of a drama king.

Lobo's sister, Maria Jose, is a sweet girl of about 14. She is very patient with her brother, despite his efforts to irritate her. She is an outstanding salsa dancer and she loves her dog. Her grandma, Chela, is teaching her to play chess. I played a few games with her. She is pretty good, but I found myself letting her win sometimes. I hope she doesn't read this.

I have enjoyed spending time with both of these kids. They are being raised by their extended family and they are the recipients of much love. On New Year's day, they tried to teach me a card game. MJ's english is pretty good and Lobo knows a few words. We had fun.

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