Thursday, January 3, 2008

As the surf churns...

We woke around 2a.m., to sounds of something pounding on wood. A recent break-in to one of the cabinas had us on alert (the burglar cut a mosquito screen and climbed in to steal a camera as the tourists slept). Relief it’s not our door. Strange that it’s our neighbor’s door, bashed in at the bottom. Brave Nic can’t find the manager and when someone turns on a light in the neighbor’s room with no objections—we figure it must be ok.

We wake again around 8am, to sounds of a man yelling and cursing profusely at the manager, Roger. While families and friends endure a subdued breakfast, two men [one stocky short guy and the other stringy tattooed tall, both in wet boardshorts, fresh outta the ocean] stalk the manager’s cabina. Both guys are locals, known dealers and troublemakers. Tattoo guy holds up a white surfboard with a series of dents down its stringer-spine. See what that **** did?

Apparently there was a surf altercation, a pretty intense one. Tattoo guy allegedly dropped in on good-surf Afro kid. Their egos collided out on the water. Choice words exchanged. Intensity intensified. And it all translated into a tussle (pummeling?) on the sand. Surf Afro kid, Josie, then seeks out a knife. (Yeah, a knife.) He attacks Tattoo guy’s board. Inflicts massive dents to the sensitive board underbelly, breaking the stringer in multiple places, rendering the board useless. It’s pretty bad. But so are the things the guys say as they pace in circles, demanding that Roger, the manager, deliver Josie (who now hides in Roger’s house). While locals look on with uninvolved curiosity that borders indifference, Nic steps into the sharky ring outside Roger’s house. Taking no side he offers reason to the men. What good will violence do at this point. What’s done is done. Tattoo guy holds up his board and fumes and stomps over the $400 board destroyed. Like a child, crying over some perceived unfairness, tough tattoo guy yells then pleads his case to someone his own size, his menace diffuses in waves by Nic’s equal but honest strength that compels him to stand firm—an unafraid witness to their threats—with coffee mug in hand.

A friend of Roger’s negotiates a solution, Josie’s board for his board if Tattoo guy will leave it at that. It’s not clear what will happen.

The policia show up. In English, they ask who speaks Spanish. Short guy explains the situation. They listen with what looks like bored tolerance. But their presence seems to encourage the guys to take the board as compensation. The friend appears with the board and jokes with them as Tattoo guy walks off two boards in hand, and we sit down to banana pancakes and gallo pinto, preparing ourselves for a much more mellow day ahead, en el campo.

I couldn’t be more proud of Nic (even if his humbleness makes him hate the fact that I’m sharing this mini-drama-adventure with our readers).


Ted Diamond said...

Wow. I've held Nic on a pedestal since I met him. Damn. I'm getting him a taller pedestal. I think Nic did, in this few minutes' episode, more good than I've done in my entire life.

Nic Pottier said...

Ted, stop your lies, you know you only like me for my Chris King hubs and are trying to get on my good side so I will leave them for you when I drown!

Ted Diamond said...

I can offer you estate planning services, so you don't have to worry about that kind of thing anymore, and can get on with your life. Basically, you let me write your will, and you sign it. No charge.

Natascha said...

Go Nic! Developer by day, action hero..well, also by day. You must be solving the global warming crisis in the evenings. ;-)