It Happened in Madrid
It began the way all great fairy tales end, with the kiss of true love.
A fairy lured me into the majestic Madrid nightlife with a thousand drops of potion.
“It’s called Long Island,” she twinkled, “Drink and it will change your life forever. Or at least for tonight.”
I drank the magical mix and within moments was gazing into the eyes of true love. Very tall, fair skin, blue eyes, kind of German looking. True love, you get it.
When he asked me to dance I responded without words. We broke into Tango, letting the dance speak the sparks between us. So sparky!
Eventually we took repose in a quaint, dark and deserted, very isolated corner of Dubliner’s Pub.
“Where are you from?” he asked, “There are few in these parts that tango so well.”
“I’m from San Francisco,” I swaggered. “You’re a native here, I can tell from your native accent. Tell me, what do you do?”
“I’m a liar”.
“At least you’re an honest liar,”
“No, no. Law-yer.” he corrected.
“You’re as good with synonyms as I am with accents.”
He laughed and then whispered the sweetest words by a lawyer I’d ever heard, “We could kiss,” and my response was lost in his lips.
The kiss of true love led to a series of marvelous dates. We took to the city, our own Verona, like Romeo and Juliet. Our passion was the envy of every couple, the joy of every voyeur in Madrid. One afternoon we sat on a bench in a secret garden to read the most famous love scenes we could think of, at least three or four. We were so clever that we managed to see ourselves in every story. We continued this way for days, painting the city with the euphoria of our passion, being generally very incredible.
Montague and Capulet
Like all love stories ours was destined to encounter its own breed of villain. In our case it had nothing to do with a Capulet or Montague. Our villain would be worse yet, that most potent, evil enemy of the modern world: Globalization!
We came from two very different villages: he from enchanting Madrid and I from the shores of San Francisco. The very demon that taunted and tried us was the same demon that brought us together.
We had become pawns amidst the forces of the universe and would be tested like no casual hookups before us. Globalization, ever cunning, would creep into our psyches at…uh…critical moments, in its effort to destroy us.
We had declared absolutely nothing to each other and according to his Catholic tradition (not mine), consummated our union at once. It was then that globalization reared its ugly head. There was thunder and lightning and suddenly he pulled away, “I must go,” he said.
“Whatever do you mean? We just-”
“My family’s waiting for me,” he said.
I was shocked. He was going to abandon me, post-Catholic-consummation, right after he…just like that? How Catholic, indeed!
“What?!” I asked him.
“P-paella night. Mom is…making paella,” he said.
I examined him closely for a sign of jest or joke. No lover would leave right after he…damned the Spanish and their delicious paella!
“Seriously? It’s a rice dish. Made of rice! Do you even-”
Oh no. I’d gone too far.
“You’ve gone too far!”
“Oh my…I…I really do like paella. I take it back. I’m so culturally sensitive.”
We stared at each other, tears welling up behind my eyes. He pulled me into his arms, “Oh God, what have I done!?” he muttered. He began to kiss me, “Darling, I don’t know what came over me. I love paella and I love-”
“My dearest,” I began, “It’s not your fault. It’s that evil, infamous, dare I name it?” We looked at each other wide-eyed, y juntos we said:
His eyes shot around the room with vengeance.
“I shall find him!” and in one swift movement he put on his glasses and looked about the room very, very thoughtfully.
“Darling, you can’t just kill Globalization. It’s not that easy. Why, we can only conquer it with our own love!”
“Ah, yes, yes of course, with our own love,” he repeated wistfully. “From this day forward,” he began with vigor, “We shall conquer la globalización, and make love as much as humanly possible, even twice a week!”
Right. That sounds so…good. From that day forth we carried on, making love. Even twice a week.
We were happy for a couple of weeks, twice a week. Safe from the forces of our villain, but when the shadow of…la globalización…came upon us again it would not be so easy to escape. It was late afternoon. We were impassioned, simply enraptured in one another. I was in the heights of ecstasy, ever close to absolute delight, ultimate climax (get it?) when rays of lightning shot through the window detaining, paralyzing my dearest. He stopped, white as a ghost.
“What time is it?” he demanded.
I didn’t know what to say, I was stunned. He scrambled for his watch, regarded it and quickly made haste. Gone like the wind!
I looked after him from the bed, colder now in his absence, and wondered what catastrophe had called him away from me at such a…uh….critical moment. So stunned and heart broken I was that I lay for hours on end, paralyzed and confused until I found it within myself to…well.
Then it came, a message from my sweet Javier Juan de Leon-Orosco IV.
“Sorry I had to run, metro was about to close. See you soon.”
Soon came none too soon for I was raging with fury that he had left me hanging at such a…uh…critical moment. I supposed it was this ever-important family and resolved to be rid of it at once.
We met as the morning dawn broke over hill and dale.
“Where is it?” I demanded. “Where is this family? Away with it. I shall do away with it at once!”
I was angry but he approached me calmly.
“You don’t understand, it’s not my family that took me away from you at such a…uh…critical moment.”
He looked at me nervously.
“Please, if you would try to understand. There are greater forces at work here, forces beyond my control!”
It occurred to me then that he thought most forces were in his control.
“What can it be?”
“This is going to be hard for you to understand,” he began.
“P.F.O. Phobia of Feminine Orgasm. You, being so obviously American with that accent of yours, probably don’t know of it.”
He was right. I was so obviously American.
P.F.O., he explained, dates back to the beginnings of the Spanish Inquisition. Clergymen traveled the land in search of faithless Christians, posers wishing to contaminate the noble and pure Catholic faith. Oh those Catholics, so noble!
The clergymen knew that true Christians make love for the sole purpose of producing God’s children. A very wise clergyman, El Tomaso he was called, wisely used this to his advantage. El Tom began hiding in bedrooms, peeping in windows, listening by whatever means he could for the moans of blasphemous feminine delight.
As he heard the sounds of a woman at such a…you know…moment…he burst through the door, crucifix in hand, “Prepare for the Inquisition!” he shouted.
At a moment like that no one is expecting the Spanish inquisition and the sinners, so full of sin, were never seen again. Tom taught his practice to many an inquisitor until it was standard protocol. Fear spread like wildfire across the Iberian Peninsula. To save their families husbands resolved to never pleasure their wives again. The Spanish inquisition endured a mere 300 years, somehow long enough for the fear of feminine orgasm to infiltrate the national psyche of the people.
“You understand, when you began that glass-shattering moan…the fear, it came over me. To think at any moment a cloaked priest, crucifix in hand would…”
How dreadful! I knew the inquisition was bad but to think that it was ruining my love life gave me a deep, new perspective, “I knew the inquisition was really, really bad! This gives me a deep, new perspective.”
“You are so culturally sensitive,” he swooned.
I repented, sympathetic to his very real fear! The mechanisms by which la globalización would rise between us were as deep and dark as his country’s (not mine) own history.
“What a fool I’ve been! What a selfish, selfish fool, thinking only of my own needs,” I condemned myself, thinking very much of my own needs.
“I forgive you, amor. It’s not your fault…it’s…la globalización!” he said, looking about for a sign of the monster. The skies shook at us with fury and a bright morning turned black and murky. He took me in his arms, “We’ll get through this,” he said, “there must be a way!”
“Yes, yes there is a way!” I was getting excited.
“Darling, please don’t get..too excited I…”
“It’s the perfect solution. Darling, I’ll have my…uh…moment…in silence! I won’t make a peep or a sound. You won’t even know when I-”
“Really, not a sound? Are you sure? I won’t even know when you-?”
“Not a sound!” I assured him.
“Thank goodness! Hey, strange we haven’t had this issue until-”
“And now we’ll never have it again!” I exclaimed. Quickly. Cutting him off. Quickly.
We were overcome with joy and that week made love even 3 times in celebration of our own union, our victory over the forces of…yeah, yeah.
The Final Battle
We quieted our enemy for a time until one bright morning I ran gleefully to meet my dearest at the commons and received an unexpected message instead.
“Can’t make it. Conquering the enemy. Kisses until we meet again.”
“What? What can it mean?” I looked about, tears in my eyes. Nothing could possibly detain my dear Javier Juan de Leon-Orosco IV.
Who was this enemy that was powerful enough to withhold him from me when he desired me so much?
I gasped, “La globalización!” I yelled it louder, calling out to the only obvious thing to ever threaten our extremely shallow infatuation. Dark clouds rolled in, thunder sounded, a few sprinkles fell on my nose but I was not to be daunted.
I would not sit idly by like some princess of past times. I would find my dearest, together we would conquer…you know who…once and for all.
“Where are you? You can’t do this alone. You need my help!” I wrote to him.
And then…I waited. After waiting a while I grabbed a sandwich and waited some more. I waited, ready to pounce at any moment. I waited with such vengeance. Damn, how I waited so good! Then just as soon as I was in the midst of waiting a message came.
“Oh yeah, you play Final Fantasy? What characters do you have?” he asked.
“WTF? You skipped our date to play video games? Are you f****** serious?”
There was a very long silence. Hours went by. Eventually I found myself at a bar with friends. I told them the tale of our two dates a week. I lamented about that Catholic family, P.F.O…and now this!
“Did you really think that you could date a Catholic?” Ashley asked.
“What’s that supposed to mean?” I said, “I’m very spiritually sensitive.”
“Hey, check out what just walked in,” Ashley pointed toward the door.
He was tall with dark hair and fair skin, a dashing presence if ever! Very Dutch looking.
My phone buzzed again and again. Goodbye Juan de la something. I grabbed a Long Island.
He had the sexiest accent when he said, “Would you care for breakfast in bed?” Now there’s a cultural difference a girl could appreciate. I appreciated it so much. Again and again. So culturally sensitive!