La Nani

It’s amazing that nothing broke in La Nani’s house.  Many things fell over, fell off tables, and after that ninety second eternity several ceramic pieces came to a halt perched perilously at the edges of her kitchen shelves.  But nothing broke.

Above is a portrait of La Nani as a young woman.  I still think of her as quite young – she has a lively sense of humor, is a great storyteller, and during the time I have known her she has been constantly up to something, knitting a blanket for her great-grandson who is on his way, cooking an amazing meal, or hosting friends and family for dinner or tea.  She still works full time, provides lodging for international students in her home where she prepares at least two meals a day and sometimes three, and keeps a well-ordered house – a place for everything, and everything in its place.  But, she is 78 years old, and as a close relative of hers has said, in moments of illness her body remembers her age.  She had to have surgery yesterday and it was quite serious.  She has already been in the hospital for some time and will have to remain there through her recovery.  I have been staying in her home with her daughter in law, and couldn’t imagine a safer and more tranquil place to be right now than this neighborhood, Las Condes.  I am extremely grateful to La Nani for opening her home to me during this month, I only wish I could thank her in person.  Truthfully, I learned as much Spanish during conversations with her as I did in my classes.  I hope she has a quick and full recovery and can return to her home soon.