Somewhere between 2 and 2:30AM yesterday (which is actually today), I finished a true, soulful reading of Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter. The book was picked up while I was in a sense of denial (I would choose when my degree ends, and it’s not now) and for some reason, this time (as opposed to the ten times in my first semester) the book did not leave me, not at the first page or the fifth, not even at the one hundred fifth.
It stayed with me as I explored the versatile Alberto De Quinteros, drank copious amounts of verbena-and-mint tea (which in my house translated to lavender tea), and listened to Marito’s various short stories while ever so slightly (wink) getting turned on by his romance with Aunt Julia. I explored Peru and it’s many villages, and marveled, constantly, at the hypocrisy of Pedro Camacho, who ‘hated’ Argentines like I hate men- with a loving passion.
This book made me feel many emotions as I read it- Llosa’s magic? but every time I closed the book (with much difficulty) only one emotion triumphed- regret. I looked at old question papers from my first semester (because I am a pack rat like that) and whined at how much better my answers could (and should) have been answered, and at the amount of sense the questions made now. Perhaps that is why I am whining here too now. I am grieving a huge loss. Not of marks (ew), but of class room discussions that could have been, of inspirations that could have inspired, and of a new, generic way of looking at 50 year old men- “a broad forehead, an aquiline nose, a penetrating gaze, the very soul of rectitude and goodness,” (it really does apply to many 50 year old men, think about it.)
And so, to get over this, I must follow, just this once, what Pedro Camacho did all throughout- ‘Once his scripts had been broadcast, he forgot about them.’ I too must forget.
Hmm, what was our Pedrito feeling guilty about, then? Did he too have writer’s anxiety? How will these tragic thoughts of Anika’s mind end?