She called herself a spiritual healer.
Chanting in Spanish, she paced
up and down the room, making signs
with her hands, praying, calling down
healing from God-only-knows-who.
Her ritual lasted three hours. My ass
was leaden and my mouth felt like
I had swallowed a wad of cotton,
but I endured her entire charade.
Adrian was her intended prey. He hoped
she’d heal injuries suffered in a motorcycle
wreck. The ritual occurred on her casa’s
top floor, up a circular staircase tower—
wrought iron, white, a cliff’s treacherous
ledge. The airy room felt semi-heavenly,
apt atmosphere for shamanic sorcery.
But when asked three times if he felt healed,
Adrian answered each with a definitive No.
When we departed, we glanced at each other’s
faces and burst into laughter.
I wouldn’t call her a bruja –
though charlatan comes to mind.
His only criticism
was: That’s three hours of my life I’ll never
get back. I agreed. We walked back to town
eagerly anticipating a few cold beers.