The New M.E. Generation











“When are you coming back?” asked the woman.

“I don’t know. This is my first time in Cuba,” replied I.

“Do you like it?”, asked she.

“For being the first one, it has been a unique experience, very interesting,” replied I.

“Cuba is not what it used to be,” said she.

“That I knew,” said I.

“This is, well, a system different from that of the past,” continued she. “Those who didn’t live it can’t adapt to it. If it is someone like you, you don’t know what it used to be. Cuba was a golden cup, a jewel. Those who know it, like me, who were born and raised here, and are now facing old age, have seen the changes.

When the afternoon ends, everyone goes home, and there’s this huge sadness. The youth by instinct is always searching for something; they go out walking, dancing, make noise. But it’s not like before; at 10pm, the ‘it’ people would go out to enjoy the nightlife. The cabarets would open, the tycoons would appear; they came from abroad,” said she.

She looked away, probably reminiscing a long time past. She even placed her index finger to her mouth as a sign of silence. This I have heard before; it signifies that ‘I shouldn’t be saying much further about this topic, as I might get into trouble.’

All I could do is look at her, smile sadly, and make a gesture of ‘I understand.’ But deep inside of me it was heartbreaking.

Sitting in that apartment was like a place almost frozen in time. This must have been a gorgeous home in its glory days, but unfortunately is not that any more.

After my meeting with the woman, I took a walk around the area and sat down in a bench in a shaded area. I looked at the people walking by, the surroundings, buildings.

It was my fourth day on this island and still feeling surreal that I was there. It was one of being on a strange place, mixed with that you’ve been here before. Maybe the similarities to my home country made me feel that way. Maybe I’ve been here in another life.

And then I asked myself, what would have happened if my marriage had been lived in this place, since my ‘x’ and family are from here?

Honestly, I think it would have been more miserable. Being in someone else’s turf would have made my existence even worse. The rules of engagement, the expectations; everything would have been at a much higher level to attain, probably unachievable.

Some of my ‘x’ in-laws would have taken advantage that I was on my own, with no friends and family to rely upon, to tear me apart, just like they did.

And my x’s infidelities would have been the talk of the town. I would have felt helpless, numb, and not knowing what to do, other than suck it up and hope that it would all go away without much damage.

All the issues and situations that lead to the divorce would have been the same, but in a different scale. It would have been a more painful and difficult experience.

Would have I stayed when I became single? Probably I would have debated it like I did before. Would have taken my time, traveled, did things the way I wanted, like discovering a new world within the only one that I knew.

I would have opted to not running away from my reality, but instead proving to myself that I had the capacity to bounce back and overcome anything that I faced. That it was time to live life the way it should be, on my own terms. Just like I did.

Just like sitting on this bench and making this trip. I was told ‘no’ so many times by my ‘x’ (and now ex-friend) that I couldn’t do certain things, to which it only fueled my desire to prove them wrong. They’re not here to see it, but they will know it about one day. It will be a message of ‘how did she do that?’ They will see a side of me they didn’t care to see.

Who knows, maybe I would have made the decision of staying at that bench. After you become single again, you have to regain your place within yourself and the earth, and I believe I have accomplished that.

Maybe one of the reasons for making this trip (without me realizing it until now), was that I needed this question to be answered.

Perhaps it was meant for me to have come to this island because there’s still some sides of me that I yet have to recover, or uncover, and this place will be the vehicle for that.

I will definitely be back. The universe is telling me that I have to.

Maybe I was indeed here in another existence. Maybe I need to make more history of my own in this lifetime. And it’s looking pretty good right from where I’m sitting now.

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“I think your friend will be fine,” said I. “It’s good that you care about him. What he needs, and pretty much everyone who serves, is our support. My opinion is that they give way too much for this country, but we don’t pay them back the way they deserve.

And in regards to them coming back ‘changed’, I’ve pretty much met every type of guy on the book. They all have some sort of lingering issue, so dealing with one from the military shouldn’t be that much different. I’ll give it a try if the situation presents itself.”

“It takes a lot of courage to do that,” said he.

“You can’t give up on the hope of finding a partner. What I’ve learned throughout the years is that you’ve got to look at people for what they really are from the beginning. We tend to judge them based on our reality and when they don’t turn out as expected, we reject them.

That’s the problem with us women. We’re expecting to hit it right from the start and then we’re breaking our heads questioning ourselves where did we go wrong, when we should have looked at what was standing in front of us and accept their way of being for what it is.

You can pretty much figure out someone quickly and determine of they’re worth any of your time and energy. If your gut feeling tells you no, it means it’s time to move on.

The secret is to know when to apply your intelligence and emotions accordingly in your favor.”

“So what do you think about me so far tonight?”

“I think you’ve been very transparent.”

“So nothing to be concerned about just yet?”

“No, nothing that raises a red flag. You’re also still young. You haven’t gone through some experience like I have that make you change your outlook on life. I’ve pretty much seen everything already. Nothing surprises me any more.”

“Well, I hope I don’t disappoint you,” said he.

I kept looking at him and everything seemed to start falling into place. At least he was trying to be polite.

“Hey, you want to eat something? How about a pizza? They have some on the menu.”

“Sounds good to me. Love pizza.”

He seemed glad to see that I had tastes like those of a guy. I may be older than him and may have changed on some things, but I’ll never give up on a good plate of food. Top that with remembering my college days, even a better taste to go for.



et cetera