Only the beginning.
Dreaming to the compass of the crashing waves.
With his feet in the sand and his cigarette in his hand.
Taking in the view of the red tide.
Listening to the radio and watching the waves.
A passing view from under our palapa.
Between the water and where we were sitting, the fishermen and their wives dished up our oysters and chopped up our octopus, not long after they took them out of the sea itself.
We requested a little salt. It arrived in a most practical dish.
Five seconds later, it was inside Patricio.
With lime juice, sea salt and buffalo salsa, it went down dangerously good.
Patricio sucked down a half dozen in a matter of minutes.
Who knows if the character I chose really means, "gentle," but as the days wear on, the tattoo is gently wearing off. It's been fun to have, though I mostly forget it's down there.
She expertly bargained for four tattoos; one for her, her friend Esperanza, her daughter Gaby, and me. The two boys pulled worn books of designs out of their backpacks, waited while we decided on what we liked, and quickly went to work with their henna pens on our bare skin.
After a few gusts of wind, Patricio gathered my wavy afro into baby palm puffs, sans the coconuts.
This is what the end of a beach day looks like.