Is it possible to think that she was the one that altered my way of seeing, thinking and constructing reality? That it was she who changed my genetics in an irreversible manner? I recall it was a place with no borders, no limits, without any regulations, a mere 360 degrees, in the vertical and horizontal. it was a place of elevated sharpness, and despite the passing of time I still remember it well. I was there for 12 years of my life in the middle of nowhere, at the foot of the Andes, 2150 meters above sea level. To be more precise, it was the first 12 years of my life. I close my eyes, and I have the same feeling, over and over again, I do it without thinking once or twice a day, maybe even more. The word I’m looking for is not solitude, but I can not find a word to describe the feeling or the experience of being there, maybe it doesn’t exist or maybe it just has to be invented. The house was large, but it wasn’t a palace, my room, I remember it gigantic, enough to go from one corner to the other on a skateboard in between of doing the homework, I now think that perhaps the dimensions are distorted because I was a child at that time.

A Metal Croos
at The Top of a Hill
Above a Mining Town

Emilio Marin

Between one house and another there was a 50 meters distance, and there was only desert. Behind them was an alley, about fifty meters wide that ran throughout the camp, it was there where the garbage truck went, every time it appeared, my dog followed the truck around camp all day. The  entire camp knew the name of my dog, " Max" . In the house right in front of mine, two sisters lived there for some time, and they probably were around my age. They said they were in love with me (or so I remember ). I must have been 11 years or less, they insistently wanted to kiss me, I remember we were in the alley behind my house and I told them I would agree only if they first undressed and went running naked through the houses across the alley, they agreed to this demand, took off their clothes and underwear, and I saw them running hurriedly over the dusty sand pavement, back and forth.

Was this a titillating hint of the secret of feeling in power?.

There, in the village, one could find everything, but only one thing of every kind; they had a cinema, a "grocery store", a pharmacy, a bank, a library, a plaza, a soccer field, a Catholic church, an evangelical church, a police station, a swimming pool, a golf course, a tennis club, a hairdresser, but also, two public schools that either way were numbered, one was for the children of professionals with leading positions within the company and the other was for the rest of the laborers. I remember how my mom used to take us walking to " the hill of the cross ", a hill about 200 meters higher up than the camp. The pathway to climb was only rocks, dust and more rocks. While up on the top, there was nothing more than an aluminum cross about 7 meters high. Facing south you could see the camp in the middle of the desert with the big mine hill in the background, and looking north one could see into infinity, a landscape without end, without limits nor borders, a delightful sight of giant hills of different colors. It was freedom and solitude at the same time, it was the wind sounding after getting between the metal sections of the structure of the cross. The distances to all the different places was possible to make by walking, even very late at night. I never had hours to follow, I was never afraid, and never did anyone lay on me any limits. The only green area in the camp was what they called " The Forest ", it was about 1,500 meters to get there from the nearest house facing west, the water used to irrigate it came from something called “the poop plant", " The Forest " was thus watered with sewage and you had to endure the smell in order to get there. At night the stars were so bright, that it shone up to day, one could see the satellites passing by all the time.

Publicado en  TOO MUCH  magazine Nº5  - Romantic Geographic