ASTURIAS is a province in Spain, the place where I accidently fell in love with my husband.
Here are two excerpts:
I had known for a long time that I wanted a life alone. That was everything. There was a magic about existence, an undervoice, and I had sacrificed love for that magic. I did not want a boyfriend. I did not want sex. I did not want friends. I was meant to become the first female Catholic priest (dismissing the fact that I was not Christian). My calling was one of silent reflection. Then I saw this sweet boy and thought, my God, he’s beautiful.
La Playa Otur is a valley of rocks where the river reaches the sea. The river flows through the rocks, underneath, and one can cross the rocks without getting wet, at least until the tide is high and fierce. There are men fishing and children collecting stones. An old woman is watching me. I am a stranger. That is not a good thing. I hide away. It’s a comfortable spot, this hiding place: I lie across the face of a large rock and listen to the ocean click-click-click as it carries the stones back and forth. Sleep takes over. I am awoken by Angelin, who’d arranged to meet me here. He is two hours late.
“Wait here,” he says, and disappears again. I climb down from my hiding space and watch him. Angelin is busy running left and right amidst the shrubbery. His head pops up at odd intervals to grin in my direction, only to disappear and appear again twenty feet away. I am afraid he is up to something distasteful.
“What are you doing?”
“Estropeando la naturaleza,” he says. “Ruining nature.”
Finally he is finished. He leads me to a patch of open field. There he has collected a thousand flower petals and – meticulously – placed them across the ground to read two words: TE AMO. I love you. His eyes shine brightly, and I chuckle.