A Quiet, Felt Moment – A Short Story For Old Folks Only! (In English and Spanish)

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A Quiet, Felt Moment – A Short Story For Old Folks Only! (In English and Spanish)

“It is late,” said the old man’s wife.

“Every night is late, at 11 o’clock, midnight, 3 o’clock and half past four,” said the old man.

In the night now, the street outside his window was noisy, and so he read until he got tired, he waited for it to become silent, and when he felt that moment, he lay down in bed, he felt the difference , he sleeps. Neighbors, new neighbors, the owner of the store that sells beer – without a license to do so – strangers, all sitting at the little corner store, outside on chairs at the tables, leaning against the cars, drinking beer, singing songs, making noise, at all hours of the night. But he would wake up, still awake, from the drunks, the car horns, and the loud music from the car radios. I would wake up several times throughout the night, in addition to having to put it back; and then there was the little fat lady with five dogs next to her, which she had to take out three times a night and they would run in the park across the road, in her garden.

“Last week the old man tried to commit suicide,” said one of the two drunks who sat on the edge of the bend across the street from the old man’s house.

“Why?” asked his companion.

“I couldn’t sleep.”

“Why not?”

“No reason.”

“How do you know there wasn’t a reason? How do you know he even tried?”

The two drunks sat on the edge of the sidewalk, on the bend drinking two bottles of beer, looking at the old man’s house across the street, at the window of the second floor, where he slept. There were two other drunks who slept under a tree in the park, near the corner, near the bicycle shop, the lady next to the old man’s house, he brought five dogs out of his apartment to do one’s duty, to refresh. And they went right through the old man’s garden, where the light of the dim arch illuminated them.

“His wife takes care of him,” said one of the drunks.

“What does it matter, if he complains about all the noise on this block, he can go back to America,” said the second drunk.

“We’d better move before he looks out his window, thinks we’re thieves and shoots us with his revolver.”

The old man is now looking through a hole he made in his curtains.

“What is dear?” asked his wife.

“You drunks again, from the tent.”

“You’ll be tired in the morning if you stay up all night.”

“I never sleep anyway until you get up, it seems today.”

The old man made a gesture with his fingers in the shape of a gun, to the drunks, they didn’t see him, “a little more and I’ll go back to bed”, he said to his wife.

“Now what are you doing?” asked his wife.

“More drunk and the mad lady next door is allowing her dogs to use our garden as a toilet again.”

“Come to bed please.”

“They think he wanted to kill me, Angel, the security guard of the day told me so, how stupid, can you believe that, he wanted to kill them, not me!”

“How did they know?”

“The lady with the dogs, church, makes things up, to get attention, I guess.”

“Oh… ool,” said his wife, in a faded voice.

“No fear for his soul, no respect, no blood on his face.”

“I’m tired dear, come to bed, you’re doing all the work for nothing.”

“They say I got a lot of money, and they want to go back to America, and they think I’m staying up all night for no reason.”

“I guess so, but they don’t have wives, do you.”

“A wife would not be good for drunkards.”

“You can’t tell them.

“I know. I’m glad to be old. An old man is a scarce thing.”

“Not always, it can be a bad thing too.”

“I wish it was quiet again.”

The old man was looking at the park and the church across the street from his window, he had pulled back the curtains, then he looked to the left, down towards the store, where there were four drunks, all drinking beer, leaning on the cars.

“When are they going to finish?” remarked the old man, waiting for his wife to say something, answer him, and looked at the bed, she had fallen asleep. Then he looked at the clock, it was 3:00 a.m. He would lie down in bed in another hour, and it would be quiet for a moment, and he would drift off and fall asleep, he knew this: “I think,” he said in a whisper, as s He was talking to his second self: “It’s all about old age.”

4-17-2009 /dedicated to my neighbors in San Juan Miraflores, Lima Peru

Spanish version

Feel a Quiet Moment

“It’s late,” said the old man’s wife.

“Every night is late, at 11:00 at night, at midnight, at 3:00 in the morning and at 4:30 in the morning” said the old man.

Outside his window, now at night, the street was noisy and for him he would read until he got tired, waiting for it to become quiet and when he felt that moment, he would throw himself into bed; he felt the difference and then fell asleep. The neighbors, the new neighbors, the owner of the shop selling beer – without a license – to strangers, all sitting outside in chairs at the tables in the small corner of the shop, reclining in their cars, drinking beer, singing songs, making noise , all hours of the night. That’s why he would wake up, he would always wake up, because of the drunks, the car horns and the loud music from the car radios. He would wake up many times during the night, for these reasons, apart from having to go to the bathroom; and then he had a small fat lady from the house of the coast with five dogs, she would have to remove outside his house three times in the night and they ran to his garden, which was through the park crossing the street.

“Last week the old man tried to commit suicide,” said one of the two drunkards sitting next to the sardinel that was crossing the street in front of the old man’s house.

“For what?” asked his companion.

“I couldn’t sleep”

“Why not?”

“There is no reason”

“How do you know there’s no reason?” “How do you know he wants it?”

The two drunkards sitting at the edge of the maple tree, on top of the sardine, were drinking two bottles of beer, looking at the old man’s house across the street, looking at the window on the second floor, where he slept. There were two drunkards sleeping under a tree in the park, around the corner, by the bicycle shop; the lady of the house next to the old man sent his five dogs to meet their needs, and they went directly to the old man’s garden, where the lights of the arc were dressed.

“His wife takes care of him,” said one of the drunkards.

“What does it matter if he complains about all that bull in his room, he can go back to North America” ​​said the other drunk.

“We’d better go before he looks out his window, and shoots us with his revolver thinking we’re thieves.”

The old man was now looking through the hole he made in his curtains.

“Que es esto dear?” asked his wife.

“Estos borrachos de nuevo, los de la tienda”.

“You’ll be tired tomorrow if you stay up all night.”

“Never go to sleep of all shapes until you wake up, that seems to be the case these days.”

The old man made signs with his fingers in the shape of a gun to the drunkards, they did not see him, “a little more and he will return to the room” he said to his wife.

“What are you doing now?” asked his wife.

“Más borrachos and the lady, esa loca of the costado’s house, is letting her dogs use our garden as outside the bathroom again.”

“Come to bed, please.”

“They think I wanted to commit suicide, Ángel, the watchman of the day told me, what fools, can you believe it? I want to kill them, not me!”

“How would they know?”

“La señora de los dogs, she gossips, invents things to attract attention, I imagine.”

“Ah…ah…” said his wife in a muffled voice.

“No tienen miedo por sus almas, no respect, no tienen sangre en sus caras”.

“Estoy cansada dear, come to bed, you worry a lot about nothing.”

“They say I have a lot of money and they want me to go back to North America, and they think I’m up all night for no reason.”

“I imagine yes, but they don’t have wives, you do.”

“A wife would not be good for a drunk.”

“You can’t say that to them”

“I know. Estoy feliz de ser un viejo. An old man is a rare thing.”

“Not always, it can be an ugly thing too.”

“Desearía que fora tranquilo again.”

The old man looked from his window at the park and the church in front of his house, he had drawn the curtains, then he looked to the left, down towards the store where the four drunkards were, all drinking beer, reclining in the cars.

“When are you going to finish?” said the old man, waiting for his wife to say something, she answered him and then looked towards the bed, she had fallen asleep. Then he looked at the clock, it was 3:00 in the morning. He would lie down in bed in an hour, outside it would be quiet for a moment and he would be so exhausted that he would fall asleep, he knew this, “I imagine…” he said in a whisper, as if he were talking to himself . same, “…que es todo sobre envejecer”.

April 17, 2009 / dedicated to my neighbors in San Juan Miraflores, Lima Peru

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