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A Story of Miguel’s Life (Part 11)

FeaturesA Story of Miguel’s Life (Part 11)

Miguel lived with his grandmother for at least 2 months after the terrible death of his parents. During that time, there were exams at his college in which he excelled, allowing him to graduate. However, due to all the heartache, he wasn’t feeling festive; he wasn’t excited to go shopping for graduation clothes; he wasn’t in the mood to go to the graduation ceremony to receive his certificate as is commonly done, so he waited until offices were open to pick up the document that specified that he had completed high school—in other words, his diploma. Miguel’s life had drastically changed. He wasn’t that joyous young man anymore; the heartbreak made him numb to life. He had to continue living; he had to find a job as his grandmother had told him. What she didn’t know was that he had money saved. He didn’t tell her anything, he kept it a secret.

Instead, Miguel set out to find a job. After some searching, he acquired a position at a very exquisite restaurant with Mr. Galaz. The restaurant was a beauty, but as you may know, beauty comes with many faces. This upscale restaurant was also a cabaret during the weekends. Surrounding the cabaret and restaurant was a fence with ornamental plants and flowers, and it also had its own private parking area. There were two entrances, one that led to the restaurant and the other that led either to the cabaret or the restaurant. During weekdays, the restaurant was open until 10:00 p.m. However, on weekends, that is, on Friday nights, Saturday and Sunday nights, it was open until 3:00 a.m., along with the cabaret. Now, the cabaret had its own dining area, and so did the restaurant, but they shared the same kitchen. So, if a client wanted to have a tranquil dinner, they could dine at the restaurant, but if they preferred, they could dine at the cabaret, which had a large dance floor, always occupied by guests from the restaurant and the cabaret, moving their bodies to the rhythm of the music.

Now, for those who wanted to have a little alone time with their partners, away from prying eyes, there were small semi-enclosed cabañas on the left side of the dance floor which allowed space for one or two couples only. These cabañas had dim lights, bright enough for the client to see, but dull enough for others to not see, which permitted them to have privacy. Each cabaña had an available electric button which could be pressed for any service that was needed. Every time that button was touched, a light bulb would power up at the cashier desk where Mr. Galaz sat. Each bulb had a light of a different color and under them had the number of their respective cabaña, so he would tell a waiter: “Waiter, Cabaña 7 needs service.” The waiter would then go to that cabaña to see what service the clientele needed, and as I said, sometimes it was a couple, sometimes it was two couples. Apart from the cabañas, if a client wanted a more private setting, rooms were available for rent; however, they weren’t rented all day. A maid service was in charge of tidying up the room once it was unoccupied. Obviously, the service of the cabaña and the rooms was an extra payment apart from the food and beverage services.

This was the kind of establishment that existed; that is, it was something new at that time, and very frequently visited by national tourists, the local people from the same city and also by international tourists, for it was an exotic place; it was something new, something different. This was the invention of Mr. Galaz himself, who was in charge; however, he was not the investor. In other words, he gave the ideas for this type of business and had the support from private investors. Yes, it was a good business. So, that was where Miguel got a job as janitor, which consisted of cleaning the establishment, setting tables, etc. during the day. At night another shift would come in, and during the weekends when the cabaret was functioning, there were more staff members. This establishment was called La Milpa. So, that was the schedule of La Milpa—restaurant during weekdays, restaurant and cabaret at night over the weekends. A very nice place with plenty of fun for adults, no children allowed. Anyway, on one of those days working at La Milpa, one of the waiters told Miguel, “Miguel, don’t go home early today. Wait for us. We are going to close early and we will take you to a very nice place which I know you will like, for it is time for you to be baptized. You are already a youngster; it is time for your baptism.”

Obviously, these people were unaware of Miguel’s personal life, and for them the culture was that at a certain age, these youngsters were baptized, meaning that they would have intimate relations with a woman. Anyway, Miguel stayed, and was taken to a place known as The Red Zone.

(To Be Continued)

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March 5, 2023
Finca Solana
Corozal Town

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