Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Lydia brings me a plate of hot empanadas and a beer, then floffs down into the other chair at the little table.

"I think it's time for my break."

"Busy day?"

"Enough. I think the expeditions are coming back through."

We watch a group of people trudge up the street, stopping to point and comment--everything new to them. They look like scientists. Some days in Puerto Williams everyone looks like a scientist.

"I just feel like I need to get out of here--get outside in some air before it's dark."

"Do you want me to stay for a while?"

Lydia pauses. "Could you work for me this weekend? Alex is coming through, and if the weather holds, we can do a little hiking."

What can I say? Besides, it will be good for me to get out of my own little house, see some new faces, fix up something besides a pot of beans.

"Sure. I can cover for you."

Alex--and yet the postcard burns in my hand.

"What have you got there," Lydia asks, eyeing the photograph from Santiago.

"Haven't read it."

"You're impossible!" She makes half a grab at it, and then she wipes her hands on her apron and sashays back behind the counter.

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