The night before last, at the end of a long afternoon, just before twilight, there was An Incident in our town.
Our little rancho, El Pedernal, has two streets lined with houses. We live on the main street. A couple of decades ago the streets were paved, so we no longer have a rocky street, but we do have two topes. These are humps the cross the road to slow down traffic.
In the evenings people tend to come out into the street to visit, and on the weekends maybe to buy a taco, tamal, or a snack.
I had gone out to the street just to gaze about, and I noticed right away that Something Was Happening; there were many people who had come quietly out to the street from their houses, and they were all looking up toward the carretera, the main road. I could see a pickup’s rear lights. Neighbors were murmuring “He backed up all the way down here, very fast, right across the topes! And then he went back up there, very, very fast!” I recognized the black pickup as belonging to a man who lives apart from his family, in the little community on the other side of the carretera. I asked “Is he mad?” The answer came, “He’s loco!!”
Someone had gone for his wife, and she and a grown son walked up to where the truck was parked. It was a rather busy time for local traffic, it seems, and every time a car or delivery truck would try to get around the black pickup, the driver would move it so that no one could pass.
The streets were lined with more people, as if for a parade., but I noticed that nobody wanted to approach the truck.
Soon his wife reached the truck, and she stood there for a long time. The word filtered back to me “He’s asleep in the truck, with his arms on the steering wheel”. And “Even his strong son can’t get him out.” There were quiet discussions about what should be done – call the police? tell the local delegado?
In the end, not surprisingly, nothing was done. I never heard the outcome.