i'm not going to tell you all that the gossipy-gossips around these parts don't get annoying - they do. if you where a pink shirt and a yellow hair tie, people are talking about it. oh, what? she ate a carrot for snack? she is so obviously trying to get skinny to find a man. duh.
it gets old.
but man, this witch thing kills me. i'm not sure i'll ever get tired of it. you'll recall my first encounter with the local witch - where the neighbors assured me that she danced on their roofs at night. and then when we saw her day-dreaming, and she was definitely lejos, flying around in some sort of out-of-body experience.
just the other day, i was in the playground, probably avoiding any kind of real work, and a little girl came up to the gate and asked for our empty bottles. she and her mother troll the neighborhood, collecting plastics which they then sell forward to some of the recycling plants near the landfill. the pair stop by school at least once a week, and we usually have something to help them out with - especially since we've been getting juice in gallon-jugs lately. sometimes we have something, sometimes we don't.
that day, we didn't.
the girl walked away, kind of pouting. the mother then came to the gate and asked for the jugs. i informed her that we didn't have any - we are saving them for a gardening project with the students.
"but i see them over there! give them to me."
"lady, i just told you that are saving them for a project."
"but, there are a ton, you can give me half. i need them."
"yes, i understand, but we need them as well. if i give you these jugs, i'll have to buy something for our project and we prefer to recycle."
"this is how i make money."
"yeah, i get that. i just explained...."
and the conversation went on for a few minutes. me getting more and more exasperated and she looking for more reasons why i should just give her what i had. i think she thought that she was getting somewhere, but she wasn't. i was frustrated and ready to tell her that she wouldn't ever be able to get our plastics again if she didn't leave. as i turned to walk away, she "shhhhhhhh"ed me.
i turned to look, and she asked me if i knew luisa. luisa who lives in la bendicion, the neighborhood next to ours. i just looked at her. really? was this woman really invoking the witch?
"yes. i do. i know her well."
she looks at me, completely serious.
"you know that she eats babies, right?"
i'm not even going to lie. i laughed in her face. i did really well when i was first confronted with the witch - i think because i wasn't being told about her as a threat, but as like, a friendly aviso, notice, about the goings on in the community. but, i'm not really sure what plastic-jugs woman was trying to do - insinuate that she'd have her eat my babies, or just the babies in the community? or accepting her loss in the battle for the jugs, deciding to throw something so non-"christian" in my face? a last word of sorts?
i'm not sure.
but believe me, i got a good laugh out of it.