A little silk, green bag

Fortunate is that person that can find a treasure in the passing of each day in life


Los patos del lago Lago Titicaca, Puno, Perú
The lake’s ducks
Lake Titicaca, Puno, Peru

As it happened and for reasons unknown to her, Felicia’s father always kept this certain bag under his pillow. It was a small bag, made of green silk, which he would tie with a small silk, red ribbon. Inside, the bag contained quite a few small coins. The coins were all the same size and design. Each coin was worth a quarter of a gold cent.

Ocaso Lago Titicaca, Puno, Perú
Dusk
Lake Titicaca, Puno, Peru

But, as everything in this life has an explanation, the little green bag, with its shiny small coins equally had its own story.

It was a short time after that, Felicia’s parents married. The event was most lavish, for both were heirs to fortunes that even the most audacious of accountants of someone else’s money had to admit were effectively uncountable, or rather, should be considered invaluable.

Descanso acuático Lago Titicaca, Puno, Perú
Water time
Lake Titicaca, Puno, Peru

Both were descendants of shipping tycoon families. Their ships sailed the seven seas, and if not, at least did frequent the known oceans of that long-ago time. It could be said that they had no worries and everything in their life was taken care of. There were a few years to go until Felicia was born into the family.

They lived comfortably in the Chapinero neighborhood, in a small, but cozy mansion. Sometime after they returned from their honeymoon, a world economic crisis occurred. It worried Felicia’s father severely, for their fortune was at a risk of diminishing from decidedly opulent to merely ridiculously rich. For that reason, one night during dinner, he found himself dejectedly considering the tortuous ups and downs of life.

Anclado en puerto Lago titicaca, Puno, Perú
Anchored in port
Lake Titicaca, Puno, Peru

 

Stories                In Spanish                How to buy          Facebook

 

   ©  All photos by edudelcorral

Read More

Felicia’s story

How many loads we carry on our back, not letting go, until death does us the kind favour of taking them away


La escuela de música Puno, Perú
The music school
Puno, Peru

The only person that knew the story and the reasons, behind Felicia’s unquenchable search and persecution of those souls that departed to never come back, was precisely her husband who was, of course, Felipe’s father.

In those happy and carefree times, when they were still young and deeply immersed in that timeless process of courting, Felipe’s father was finding it extremely difficult to understand how Felicia could involve herself so profoundly in matters that had anything to do with spirits and ghosts. He just couldn’t imagine anybody else their age being so attached to these issues…

En el muelle Lago Titicaca, Puno, Perú
At the dock
Lake Titicaca, Puno, Peru

“Possibly in a much older woman, who also has nothing else to do,” he thought, “but she’s only eighteen; I am barely eighteen, and all this seems just too odd…”

It was to Felipe’s great comfort and spiritual peace that one Sunday afternoon this unfathomable mystery was resolved. This took place many years ago and shortly before they were married. At the time, they were firmly engaged. that Felicia broke up crying disconsolately. From one moment to the next, Felicia went from laughing gaily to despondently crying. This happened that Sunday afternoon while they were comfortably sitting in the parlour, in Felicia’s parent’s house and drinking coffee and enjoying some cinnamon cookies, her mother had just baked in the morning.

La estación del ferrocarril Puno, Perú
The railroad station
Puno, Peru

He had asked her, for he was certainly a bit concerned, about that mania she had for establishing contact with the world of spirits (of course he mentioned it rather tactfully as: this deep interest of hers).

Unexpectedly, Felicia overwhelmed, burst into tears. Once she had recovered herself, she proceeded to quietly tell him about these certain sad events that went all the way back to her early childhood.

The afternoon dragged on slowly and gradually turned into the evening, as it began to get dark. Meanwhile, and for the first time, Felicia narrated those events that she had kept hidden and buried deep in her heart for so many years.

El velero Lago Titicaca, Puno, Perú
The sailboat
Lake Titicaca, Puno, Peru

 

Stories                In Spanish                How to buy          Facebook

 

   ©  All photos by edudelcorral

Read More

Maracuya and arequipe candies

Life and persons may be sweet, but never too much, for they risk becoming boring


El Cristo Lago, Titicaca, Puno, Perú
The Christ
Titicaca Lake, Puno, Peru

Precisely for those reasons, Felipe had discovered in Angelica, this refreshing vision of a woman of the world, the presence of a person who advanced with firm, confident steps, a mind that was highly intelligent with her feet stolidly planted on the ground and adamantly not given to mystical speculations. Therefore, in those quiet moments, he found himself terribly confused and without knowing what to think.

Entrada a Puno Lago Titicaca, Puno, Perú
Entering Puno
Titicaca Lake, Puno, Peru

Felipe and his wife interchanged glances, full of significance. Brief glimpses, almost instantaneous, but they discretely transmitted their mutual preoccupation concerning grandmother’s mental stability.

Pilar was trying to imagine the thoughts that went through Felipe’s mind. Childhood friends, Pilar met Doña Felicia since she was yet a child and knew her quite closely. In the beginning, she was overtaken by the staggering physical beauty of her future mother in law, which was truly breathtaking. For sure, the same thing happened to Felipe’s father at some time. Yet, as she got to know her better, her perception with respect to Felipe’s mother changed drastically.

Vista desde el norte de Puno Lago Titicaca, Puno, Perú
North view from Puno
Titicaca Lake, Puno, Peru

It’s not that Felicia was a bad person. Quite the contrary, she was that kind of a person in which there is no room for evil. Too innocent and naïve, Pilar would think in this matter. Something like the arequipe sweets from Uraba, the kind they made down by the Atlantic coast. O rather the passion fruit candies from the Santander region that Felipe found so delicious. Those that that you barely enjoy… because they are just too overly sweet! Too sugary and, at the same time, much too bland… she concluded.

Zona del malecón Lago Titicaca, Puno, Perú
The docks
Titicaca Lake, Puno, Peru

 

Stories                In Spanish                How to buy          Facebook

 

   ©  All photos by edudelcorral

Read More

An elegant ending

‘Till the end, he cultivated the art of dressing finely


La llamita Carretera arequipa a Puno, Perú
The baby llama
Highway from Arequipa to Puno, Peru

So, it was not a surprise that when he was detained on his way to the beautiful river port of Honda, this illuminated master of the occult sciences had discarded his British accent and adopted a most convincing German one. The blonde hair had transformed itself into a reddish kind and he wore an eyepiece, while he had never worn one, during all his stay in Bogota..

El altiplano Carretera de Arequipa a Puno, Perú
The highland
Highway from Arequipa to Puno, Peru

Happily, the port authorities did not fall for his tricks, and he was duly arrested. Next morning, he was taken to Bogota, with his eyepiece and his accent that was as false as the colour of his hair. There, he resided for many years as a guest of the State Penitentiary System and he wrote his memoirs, splattered with lies as long as the years that he spent in prison.

La ribera Carretera de Arequipa a Puno, Perú
The shores
Highway from  Arequipa to Puno, Peru

In the end, they found him one morning, as he was hanging from a rope in someone else’s cell. There are those that affirm that it was the spirits who grew tired of his using them for his own personal motives and took their revenge. Others do not agree. They propose that this ambassador from the other side, had a very mundane encounter with one of his fellow prisoners. The opinions may vary, but the truth of the matter is that the rope contained thirty and one perfectly well tied knots, and if that were not enough, on the occasion, he was wearing his favorite tie.

This was but one of the many spiritual experiences with which Felipe grew up during his childhood and later youth.

En el camino Carretera de Arequipa a Puno, Perú
The road
Highway from Arequipa to Puno, Peru

 

Stories                In Spanish                How to buy          Facebook

 

   ©  All photos by edudelcorral

Read More

Ties, and the proper ways to tie them

The art of tying a knot, requires the corresponding skill to undo it.


Vista al lago Carretera de Arequipa a Puno, Perú
View of the lake
Highway from Arequipa to Puno, Peru

The alleged, so-called professor, knew the twenty-two forms to make tie a knot, as so carefully described by Honoré de Balzac, in his book: The art of wearing a tie. In his untiring passion for these elements of elegant manners, he had actually invented nine more of his own design. Consequently, this aforesaid minister of the beings from other spheres of existence could boast that even in the long month of thirty-one days, he would never repeat the same knot in his ties in the same month.

Los picos nevados Carretera de Arequipa a Puno, Perú
Snow caps
Highway from Arequipa to Puno, Peru

As was the case with these elements of fine dressing, this erudite on spiritual matters, also maintained a long list of names and pseudonyms with which he travelled through the assorted countries of America and Europe, always moving in the highest spheres of society, and particularly among the gullible ladies of this segment of the social circles.

Paisaje lacustre Carretera de Arequipa a Puno, Perú
Lakeside landscape
Highway from Arequipa to Puno, Peru

When having to flee a country, due to problems with the authorities and the enforcers of the law, he would discard his name, change his haircut and the colour of his hair, and quite amazingly even his personality. As it happened, among his many other peculiarities, he curiously maintained a wealth of foreign accents, which even surpassed in quantity the number of ties he kept carefully folded and tucked away in his travelling trunk, gaily decorated with emblems of many countries, each one, representing a land he could never return to.

Paisajes de la Puna Carretera Arequipa a Puno, Perú
Grazing
Highway from Arequipa to Puno, Peru

 

Stories                In Spanish                How to buy          Facebook

 

   ©  All photos by edudelcorral

Read More

An artist of elegance and deception

Many colours wears the stalker so to attract his prey


La Peluquería Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia
The barber shop
Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia

Years later, Felipe found out how his father had a discreet conversation with the Chief of Police, on the next day. Acting quickly, they detained the alleged professor. He had prematurely left the city, and he was on his way to the Honda river port seeking to buy his passage on a steamboat heading to Barranquilla.

El patio Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia
The railroad yard
Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia

Oddly enough, he was carrying a large quantity of valuable jewels in his personal baggage, apparently “donated” by the spiritual group’s ladies in order to cooperate for the expenses of this distinguished representative of the hereafter.

El puente del ferrocarril Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia
The railway bridge
Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia

This accomplished intermediary between mortals and the inhabitants of the ethereal regions, of those who no longer breathed the air of this world, kept an impressive collection of ties. Unique items made and imported from different countries of the world.

He was able to tie without requiring the aid of servants. This was an incontrovertible fact that he would brag about, whenever there was the chance to do so.

Paisaje de altura Carretera Arequipa a Puno, Perú
High lands landscape
Carretera Arequipa a Puno, Perú

 

Stories                In Spanish                How to buy          Facebook

 

   ©  All photos by edudelcorral

Read More

The spirits and their languages

How many matters could be discussed with those that passed through before us


La Estación Tupiza Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia
The train Station
Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia

“Bosh, Felipe, always joking. I am talking quite seriously. This ghost knows the ancient secret of eternal life! Can you imagine? Of course, in order to get him to share it with us, the professor has asked us to cooperate for the expenses this involves. And we have gladly decided to do this. This matter, being of such a transcendental nature, I believe that it has cost us next to nothing and has been well worth it. Wouldn’t you agree?”

Señales del tren Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia
Train sign posts
Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia

“We shall see how you will most definitely pay serious attention to our conversation next week. By then, we will have a most fabulous session and the spirit will have revealed this priceless secret, and more importantly, I will finally be this close to establishing contact with the dearly departed.”

El vagón de carga Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia
The freight car
Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia

“Interesting, how a spirit that died so many years ago, and so distantly, has learned to speak Spanish, don’t you agree? As for the money, how is it that you will send to the other side? Perhaps you will transmute it, using the philosopher’s stone?”

Caminando las vías Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia
Walking the tracks
Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia

 

Stories                In Spanish                How to buy          Facebook

 

   ©  All photos by edudelcorral

Read More

Childhood specters

How many situations do we carry on our backs and al the way from our childhood… unresolved issues that weigh more each day, as the years pass us by


Camino a casa Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia
On the way home
Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia

That was why, talk about exotic questions like those recently posed by Angelica, amply constituted a familiar background for Felipe, but, at the same time, this kind of talk delved into subjects that had been completely discredited many years before, back in Felipe’s childhood days.

“My dear, I have terribly important news for you, something that will change our existence, as we now know it.” Doña Felicia commented to her husband, one splendid day during lunch. At that time, Felipe was scarcely around nine-years old.

Las planicies de Tupiza Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia
Tupiza’s colours
Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia

Felipe continued to eat, as he heard his father answer:

“A nice change would be for the woman who prepared this soup to be kind enough to season it and impart a bit of flavor into it!”

“But, how can that be? I find it terribly delicious. Today we had a most interesting session, my dear sir. And, we managed to talk to a spirit that died more than four thousand years ago, somewhere near Egypt. You cannot even grasp how exciting it turned out to be, truly an indescribable experience…”

En la terminal de buses Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia
At the bus station
Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia

“I feel so sorry for the poor fellow! Just to think that four thousand years later, these Colombian women would be waking him from his most deserved rest… As a judge, I find it so difficult to observe the lack of justice in the world. Assuredly, the administration of Justice is a most complicated job.”

Estación del ferrocarril Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia
The railroad station
Tupiza, Potosí, Bolivia

 

Stories                In Spanish                How to buy          Facebook

 

   ©  All photos by edudelcorral

Read More

Communicating with the great beyond

Their are those that proclaim knowledge of mysterious ways, and those that believe them


Tierras altas Carretera de Arequipa a Puno, Perú
High lands
Highway from Arequipa to Puno, Peru

While for Felipe, these esoteric proposals were extremely difficult to reconcile. In his specific case, his mother had cultivated, shall we say, a rather mystical approach towards life. She was very enthusiastic in attending spiritual sessions, and also participating in all manner of practices related to the occult arts in Bogota.

Trabajando la tierra Carretera de Arequipa a Puno, Perú
Working the land
Highway from Arequipa to Puno, Peru

She, as all her fellow companions, were ladies that belonged to Bogota’s highest social circles and were also a bit bored, without more productive interests to follow.

In spite of having lived through various scams and some outrageous, shameless frauds related to these matters of talking to the dead, the unabashed woman insisted on these abstruse incursions. Felipe, and his father, tolerated in good humor what they had come to consider the eccentric, outlandish side of Felipe’s mother.

Vista de la ciudad Carretera de Arequipa a Puno, Perú
View of the city
Highway from Arequipa to Puno, Peru

Importantly, Felipe’s mother was backed up by the powerful influence of her husband, a highly-respected magistrate of the Court.

Compartiendo labores Carretera de Arequipa a Puno, Perú
Sharing the labours
Highway from Arequipa to Puno, Peru

 

Stories                In Spanish                How to buy          Facebook

 

   ©  All photos by edudelcorral

Read More

Predicting destinies

He who can enjoy the twilight of his life in full awareness of his blessings… is unquestionably fortunate


Entre montañas Carretera de Arequipa a Puno, Perú
In between mountains
Highway from Arequipa to Puno, Peru

“If you find this difficult to accept, then surely you will never accept that since I was a little girl, I understood their language and have sporadically communicated with them. For that particular reason, I can categorically affirm, and with all due certainty…”

Vista a los nevados Carretera de Arequipa a Puno, Perú
View to the snow caps 
Highway from Arequipa to Puno, Peru

“The enigmatic being you have all recently heard has just now pronounced an unambiguous and definite announcement concerning Cipriano, my great grandson, whom you, my dear Pilar, carry at this moment in your womb. He has foretold how Cipriano shall follow the musical tradition of this family; and beyond that, he will eventually grow up to be both a great composer and pianist.”

Paisaje de la puna Carretera de Arequipa a Puno, Perú
Highland landscapes
Highway from Arequipa to Puno, Peru

Naturally, these remarks were followed by a thick, heavy absolute silence: Pilar, sceptic on all concerning supernatural events was terribly disconcerted. Since she was a girl, her grandmother had instilled and reinforced a very practical and down to earth vision with which to interpret the world. For Pilar, her grandmother represented an example to follow. Therefore, she felt that Angelica was now betraying those same guiding principles that she fostered in her since early childhood.

Atardecer en las alturas Carretera de Arequipa a Puno, Perú
Dusk in the highlands
Highway from Arequipa to Puno, Peru

 

Stories                In Spanish                How to buy          Facebook

 

   ©  All photos by edudelcorral

Read More