On long weekends we made excursions to the Green Coast, where Juanita had the free use of a beachfront cottage from a friend. It was in a secluded harbour with such calm, deep green-blue waters. At night we used to sit on the jetty, holding hands and letting some of our dreams surface.
‘I feel so comfortable having you by my side.’ Juanita told me many times on those occasions.
‘It is nice to know I can lean my head on your shoulder, and again feel the warmth of a man’s body close to mine. I know, you are not mine, and I know that you never will be. I know this it is only an illusion and that soon you will return to your country, to your normal life. You have a wife there, waiting for you, and I don’t want her to suffer those infernal torments which I have been through.’
‘I wish to come back to Rio soon and create a new life with you, Juanita.’
‘Yes Bill, till that day you when you’ll be back. I’ll be contented to have you in this way, on borrowed time. Contented with the good moments we are lovers and we are lost in our dreams. I enjoy with you the physical contact of our bare skins, and the way you breathe heavily at the moment you are reaching that moment of glory and you are warmly throbbing inside me…I can’t deny, I love you for all the moments of ecstasy you infuse in me and I don’t want to lose you. Just for now I don’t want to look to the future. I’m happy to sit with you on the jetty and have the moon look at us, an accomplice in our union.’
‘I know how difficult this is for you, my love, but at the moment I can offer you so little.’
“I have come to love you, Bill, and I want you to be mine now and to give me what I need. I like the smell of you, I like the way you hold me at night, the way our bodies are twined in the knot of love, the sensation of having you deep inside me and, in those moments, I feel free, loved, and possessed by you. I am yours and I want to be yours for the rest of the time you are in Brazil. Then, after that, let it be a good dream, let the good memories be an evanescent shadow in us. Those shadowed memories in the future, will keep our love alive forever. It would never be spoiled, because we have put into it the best of our beings, because it has just matured. Mostly, our love will be kept alive because we have stopped in time, before any decay could contaminate it.’
Yes, Juanita was right with what she said.
After I left Rio, I thought of her with more passion and desire. I often craved her, the sensual body and the salty taste of it when I was kissing her curvaceous figure. Yes, she was a great lover. In her was the brio and the warmth of that tropical paradise where she was born. In her existed some mixed beliefs and credos. In her was the well educated western English teacher as well as the primordial woman perpetrating the magic of the Voodoo to exalt her womanly capacities of powers, her eroticism and exoticism. She was capable of creating the sensation and the desire that a man wants. Juanita knew well those secrets inbuilt by the magic of the voodoos. I have to admit that she had always been generous with me. She never wanted to possess me. She only took me on a temporary basis, not forever, because she never wanted to spoil the beauty of our time together. She wanted to preserve it pure and fresh, to be kept as a memory for the future.
* * *
My two years contract in Brazil would soon be finished. I would have to return to Australia, back home to Clare, my wife, sometime in February.
Clare was quite a beautiful woman, but I had to admit that I’d not missed her very much. She was such a contrast to the Brazilians. She was blond, tall, calculated, and cold blooded in nature. In her life she planned everything well in advance.
I’d never seen her once making an on-the-spot decision. She wouldn’t ever grab an opportunity, even if it was served on a silver platter, for the simple reason that she hadn’t analyzed and programmed it in advance. In our marital life she even timetabled the day to make love and the most suitable time for it. That was the reason why she got on my nerves so often. How many times had she refused the marital joy of making love? Too many I suppose. She never responded to my sexual desires saying dramatically and with a hint of irony in her voice, ’I haven’t got time for that now. I must be at the beauty salon within half an hour…’
Our marriage took second place in her life. She always had an excuse ready to disassociate herself from such obligation.
I found that she also had an aversion for mixed blood people. She believes that the ‘half cast’, as she calls them, were quite inferiors to the ‘real blues’, her expression to qualify people belonging to the Celtic culture, tall, blonde with blue eyes.
That has always been my problem with her. She had never wanted to follow me to ‘exotic countries’, as she called the rest of the world that wasn’t directly connected with those northern colonies.
She had most likely been influenced by her mother’s strict upbringing, which gave her the old puritanical fashion in vogue in the Victorian times.
This is what I was facing by returning home.
I made several phone calls to her mentioning my imminent return to Australia. She didn’t comment one way or the other, and I wasn’t sure if she was happy to see me back home. Knowing her, I believed she preferred to indefinitely carry on our life the way it was, separated by thousand of miles.
In her unspoken message she told me, “yes, I like to be married to you. You are a wonderful provider of my needs. I have plenty of money to spend, and a magnificent home facing the Pacific Ocean to live in. That is what I want from you. Oh, I’m forgetting my dear, I also love the fact that you are always so far away, so I don’t need to worry about a family and some impossible kids in my way. I don’t have to pretend and I can enjoy my life at the golf club, and be entertained by the many friends I have. With you, thousands of miles away, our relationship runs wonderfully.”
I believe that was her idea of the perfect marriage, without hassles and free of quarrels. Many times, I suspected that she manipulated her father, an executive of the corporation where I’m employed, to offer me the well remunerated distant contracts, so that I wouldn’t disturb her beautiful independent life.
With these doubts in mind, I admit I had cold feet in returning home. Apart from this I was enjoying my life in Brazil, which gave me a more contrasting easier life with the friendliness of these people.