Buenos Aires, Argentina
My day started like all my others, clueless to its meaning or outcome. I have never been known to be a Macho Macho man, so I thought I would give it a go as a Gaucho Gaucho man, but at day’s end that is not the man I was meant to be.
Having been picked up on a tour bus to go to an Argentinian Gaucho farm, I was asked by one of my fellow tourist why I travel on my own. The reasons are many, but the main one is I meet more people and have more experiences going solo. As I was saying this, a young gentleman from Barcelona got on the bus, some people have a come to Jesus moment, but in this case Jesus, came to me. Jesus de Barcelona, an information engineer. Sitting next to me was Lily de Mexico. A Marine Biology graduate, now getting her MBA and then wanting to earn a Doctorate.
As we neared the ranch, we were reminded it was Father’s Day and Lily offered me the mint. To give it some meaning I thanked her for the Father’s Day gift, at which time it was agreed I would be Lily and Jesus’ father for the day and they my kids. It is fun to have some fun.
Upon arrival we went out for a horse ride and walked around the museum. Joking as parent and child would on the way. When we sat down for lunch Lily shared with me she had never had occasion to celebrate Father’s Day, in that she never knew her father. She had been raised by her mother and Grandmother in Mexico City. She made my day special by honoring me as a Father, something she never had. The mint was the first gift she had ever had occasion to give to a father on Father’s Day.
After lunch, the caballeros put on a show, including a wedding ring grabbing contest with the winner offering a ring to one of the young ladies, for her hand in marriage. As it should happen, Lily was the lady. As a good father, I tried to convince her the 50 year old plus caballero was too young for her. But like many daugthters, dad’s advice especially make-believe dads was ignored. A wedding and celebration was had, and as her dad we shared in a Father’s daughter dance, and then the father of the groom danced with her too. I had and lost a daughter all in a day, but I still had a son who like my own I could look up to. Looking up to Jesus, is not a bad situation to be in.
With the day’s activities and honeymoon over, we returned to our real life’s, having enjoyed a moment in time, that neither of us expected, but will always remember. For a brief moment she had a ‘father’, she never had or expected, and I had a ‘daughter’ with the grace and beauty of my own. And my father’s day gift of a breath mint, will remain fresh in my memory for time to come.
Just because one travels alone, does not mean they are alone, today was ‘Mint’ to be. LiLy AlvarEz