Death has never really been close to me. I have been fortunate for not having to suffer that excruciating pain only known by those who’ve lost a loved one. Two days ago, I got a grasp of that pain.
In most of Colombia, except maybe for estrato (social level) 6, neighbors are close to each other. Sometimes too much, but that’s another story. One of those close Cali neighbors was killed on Monday. He was a father to two sons and a husband. He was a cool neighbor. He wished my dad, mom and I a merry christmas and a happy new year at the grocery store my parents own. He shook our hands and smiled to us. I had no idea it was going to be the last time I saw him.
I’ve cried for his loss and I was just his neighbor, and not even that since I moved to Bogotá. I’ve felt sorry for his wife and kids and I’ve wished I could be there for them to hug them, to console them, to cry with them. I can’t even imagine what they are going through and I can only pray to god to give them strength to go on with their lives.
Don Alejandro is no longer with us and once again, life in Cali and Colombia proves to be rough, unfair and bitter at times.