Wednesday, October 06, 2004

Nery & Edward

My family has a friend named Nery who is Deaf and lives in Vienna, Virginia. She was born and raised in Havana, Cuba. Nery is passionate, wild and full of life woman, despite the fact that she cannot write nor read in English but at 68, that does not stop her from trying to learn. She is very fluent in ASL, though.

However, she was in Havana when she first met Edward, who was on a vacation in Havana and fell in love with her. This happened few months before Fidel Castro took over the island. Edward bagged her and brought her to Virginia while he worked for General Printing Office until his retirement.

One time, I was staying at his home for the weekend as I desperately needed a break from Gallaudet. Edward and Nery baked home-made pizza and accidentally spilled the cayenne peppers excessively. Edward raced to remove the peppers but it was too much for them to clear it up. Nery insisted that Edward go ahead and bake it anyway and see my reaction. I ate while they stared. I nearly died of dehyderation! Nery was convulsed with heavy laughters. While Edward panicked and fed me lots of water to drink.

However, there is a tale that I never forgot about Nery, courtesy of Edward. Edward loves to drink. One day, they went to a deaf event in Maryland, just off from 495 Beltway. Edward was too drunk to drive, Nery insisted that she drives. This happened more than 40 years ago, Edward explained. Edward was concerned that she cannot read English on the signs but Nery insisted that she knew the familiar words to get to Vienna. He decided to let her drive while he slept in the car, he checked the gas to make sure that it's available. It was nearly 3/4. Leading her to the beltway, he dozed off.

Later, the car hits a common bump on the beltway which jolted Edward to wake up and saw a sign, "College Park". He thought it was odd because the car is supposed to go south, not north. As soon as Edward realized that the car is on the correct path -- but there is something wrong with the picture. Edward noticed that the gas is almost empty. He was baffled and looked at time, it was nearly 5 AM in the morning -- suddenly, he realized that Nery has been driving on the beltway in circles! For hours!

I watched Edward in amazement as Edward said, "Yes, true biz! Yes, true! Her did it!" He pointed at her.

Nery blew up at Edward in Cuban-style, "Must you tell everyone about that? MUST MUST MUST????"

You cannot deny but love them for who they are.


No comments: