I remember telling him about my problems with learning to read. I didn’t understand what was wrong with having learned reading the book by heart, until the teacher realized that it wasn’t that I knew how to read, but that I had a great memory. She changed the book, and I repeated first grade. I asked him what the problem was. He, always serene, comforted me and assured me that I would make it.
I was always a restless girl who couldn’t be quietly playing “pretend food cooking”. I climbed everywhere I could and once I jumped out of a tree with an umbrella, because of course the umbrella would be a parachute. My mom was there, and she told me not to jump because the umbrella wouldn’t stop me, and that if I did she was going to spank me twice. But I did. I fell, I broke the umbrella and my mom first spanked me and then healed me. I was very sad, so I ran into the arms of my friend crying and I told him that umbrellas don’t stop you if you jump from a tree and that my mom had spanked me.
I don’t remember what he said to me, but he comforted me and took care of me for a while, because later my mom came back for me to go to dinner and found me asleep in his shade. She just told me: “I knew you would be here with your little Juan; say goodbye and come to eat.”