So Mom takes off to do a little exploring. She’s been dying to see Ciudad Colon [see-ooo-DAHD co-LONE… only she says see-YOU-dahd… makes me nuts]. She drives over there, looks around, loves it (she loves everything) and heads back. You have to drive through Santa Ana*on the way to Ciudad Colon, and back.
On the way back, she’s not exactly sure she’s headed to Santa Ana. She pulls over to a bus stop and asks the old man sitting there, “Santa Ana?” and points vigorously with her finger in the assumed direction.
The old man brightens up and says, “Sí!” Then he gets in the car with her. He thinks she’s offered him a ride to Santa Ana.
Giving rides is a very common courtesy: you see people walking all the time, then a car stops in the middle of the street, the driver and the walker chat for a moment, the walker gets in, off they go. Most of the gringo expats I know who are familiar to the locals offer rides all the time.
Cars are still not “one to a household” here. There are locals who have only been in a car a few times. In fact, still those who have never been in a personal car. I suspect this is why so many people who don’t own and are not familiar with cars are killed running across a highway or walking down the narrow roadway at night wearing dark clothes… they simply have no idea they can’t be seen. No idea how powerful and fast a car really is.
Mom is, of course, delighted to give the man a ride. Thank God they were on the road to Santa Ana… She dropped him off when they got to town. I’m wondering what they talked about.
*san-TAN-ah, by the way. If you say SAN-ta AN-ah, everyone knows you aren’t with it. Like saying LOU-ee-vill instead of the proper LOU-uh-vul. Be cool.