Friday night was the first time this year we all got together to play basketball. We used to do it all the time. My loved ones would all come together at one of the many courts in the Cayo Area and we would play half court games of three on three or full court games with larger teams until the late hours of the nigth. Those who didn't feel like playing were easily entertained. They could jog around the park, sit on the sides and talk, run around with the kids, or even sit in the car and be alone. The Doctor and Jeidy actually met at on of these outings, so long ago.
There were many reasons why we slowly stopped playing this year. Edwin died. Javier and Jenny moved away, Dad's job, Karim and Vany's new baby, The Doctor in Gaute, Jeidy in Flores, me in school, etc...
Friday I say three ghost. At the beginning of the evening I missed Edwin so bad. Everywhere I looked the bright court light chased away his shadow. Edwin loved basketball. We were always on opposite teams because our skills matched. He got tired easy but that didn't stop him from playing. He developed a great outside shot that I had problems defending. I used do lay ups around him, but as his arms grew longer I got "packed" more. Friday night I missed his loud breathing, the twinkle in his happy dark eyes, and his hushed shouts. I almost felt his hand slap me on the back as he used to after a friendly game. I wanted to cry.
Another ghost was the shadow of a ruined marriage. Javier is back in Cayo. He was at the court and we even joked. The absence of his wife and children pinched my heart. How? Why? He is no longer Javy... he is a ghost of a family man. The laughter of a happy family unit belongs to the wind. I stopped crying for Javier. Life has to go on. He a ghost that will haunt the earth and we have to just love and accept him.
That last ghost was a happy ghost. It is the Ghost of comrade that moved a way and was never heard from. Five years ago my brother-friend, a guy who almost lived at my house moved away. He was a brother to me. I was upset my his drinking, laughed at his jokes and made him birthday cakes. He ate my attempts to cook, criticized my clothes, and massaged my feet. He was there: played family games with us, played basketball with us, rode horses, went to the river, whatever we did he was there. Then, he was gone. Moved to Canada, got a job, made a life. He was gone. He surprised us by just showing up. He is visiting for a month. It was lovely to see him.
I am glad that I have all these ghost. I mean, the first two are sad and make we feel like crying, but they give meaning to my life. This ghost show we what I have seen, those I have touched, and remember what I loved. Love is a good thing. I am glad I loved.